This wine from Morocco proved interesting at multiple levels. First, it is, well, from Morocco and the wine is in Australia. Second, as a syrah, it shows some resemblance to a Rhône style wine. Third, the wine is very good and not just a novelty. The aroma is quite attractive, with plum notes interlaced with chalk. The palate is full bodied, the tannins a robust medium in character and the length on the finish is medium. A classy wine that is ready to drink now. Rating: Good. Website: wine-searcher.com. Reviewed: August 2020.
From Alicante in the south of Spain, this is a full bodied, spicey and edgeless blend. The grape varieties are monastrell (mouvèrdre), syrah, alicante bouschét (a red variety that also unusually has red flesh) and giró (a red variety found in Spain and Sardinia). This pleasant wine is ready to drink now. Rating: Good. Website: NA. Reviewed: August 2020.
Sablet is one of the Côtes du Rhône Villages appellations in the southern Rhône Valley in France. This wine from Domaine de la Roubine is a blend of 70% grenache, 25% syrah and 5% cinsault. It has aromas of stalk, rosemary and a green bouquet garnis character. The palate is full bodied, with medium tannins and rich expression, together with high alcohol (15%) and no edges. Ready to drink now. Rating: Good. Website: http://domainelaroubine.com/en/ledomaine.html. Reviewed: June 2020.
I’ve tasted a couple of vintages now of this entry level syrah from the Cave de Tain and the Collines Rodaniennes IGP in the Rhône Valley, France. The 2016 vintage is reviewed here. The 2018 vintage is also of good quality. It has typical syrah aromas of wet rosemary, spice and bouquet garnis. The Australian equivalent would include cool climate Yarra syrah although this wine has fewer angles. The palate is full bodied, spicy, has soft tannins and a medium length finish. Ready to drink now. Rating: Good. Website: https://www.cavedetain.com/en/. Reviewed: June 2020.
This is an excellent expression of Crozes-Hermitage from Jann Chave in the northern Rhône Valley, one of the region’s stronger producers. It has cedar and spice aromatics. The palate reminds of syrah with its pepper and spice character. Some pastille notes express themselves at intervals. Overall, this is a very good wine that is enjoyable now and can be approached over the next 5 to 8 years. Rating: Very Good. Abv: 12.5. Price: $50s. Website: https://www.yannchave.com/en/our-wine. Reviewed: June 2020.
This is a heady Côtes du Rhône Villages wine. It opens to spicy and peppery aromatics. The palate is full bodied and the length on the finish medium. Spices, rosemary and some raisined, but savoury, fruit emerges with time. Ready to drink now. Rating: Good. Abv: 14.0. Price: $20. Website: http://tardieu-laurent.fr/en/la-maison-2/. Reviewed: May 2020.
From the Languedoc in the south of France, this is a delicious wine that enormously over delivers at $21. It appeals as a crossover style with new world style ripe fruit built on a savoury old world structure. The wine opens to aromas of cracked pepper, rich spicy dark fruit and coconut. The palate is full bodied, has soft tannins and a savoury lilt. Ready to drink now, this is a great value wine. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 14.5. Price: $21. Website: http://www.paulmas.com/en/domains/chateau-paul-mas/. Source: Sample. Reviewed: April 2020.
From Minervois in the south of France, Les Traverses from Domaine de Courbissac is a grenache, syrah and mourvèdre blend. It has sweet smelling aromas of spice and cooked fruit compot. The palate is full bodied with medium acidity and soft tannins. Rating: Good. Abv: 13.0. Price: $35. Website: NA. Reviewed: April 2020.
This is a very good Saint Joseph syrah from Coursodon and the 2017 vintage. In the glass, there are aromas of baked plums and a distinctive, resonant pepper character. Although ripe, the wine remains medium bodied, finishing with medium to long length and peppery overtones. Ready to drink now and over the next 5 to 8 years. Rating: Very Good. Abv: 14.5%. Website: https://www.domaine-coursodon.com/en/. Reviewed: February 2020.
This is a very attractive expression of cool climate syrah from the Yarra Valley and Warramunda Estate. It reminds of red fruits and pepper, supported by soft tannins and is ready to drink now. Rating: Good. Abv: 13.5%. Price: $35. Website: https://warramundaestate.com.au. Source: Sample. Reviewed: February 2020.