Chante Cigale is a famous Chateauneuf-du-Pape house that has been earning some incredible reviews from the critics as of late. We’ve been carrying their “CdP” in the store for some time now. I wasn’t aware that they had another line of wines called l’Apostrophe until OZ Wine Company came in with a sample last week. These wines are made in Travaillan, a village between Chateauneuf and Gigondas in the Rhone Valley and all come with the modest IGP Méditérranée appellation. With this comes a much lower price and you’d think less quality. But winemaker Alexandre Favier makes these wines with the same strict quality standards as he does with his blockbuster Chateauneufs. While Favier is young, he does everything “old-school” in the vineyard and cellar. He keeps yields low at 35 hl/ha, harvests the fruit by hand and hand selects grapes on a sorting table. He macerates (lets the juice and skins co-mingle) for a couple of weeks in an open vat, ferments in stainless steel and bottles unfiltered. The wines are made with indigenous yeasts.
The rouge is a blend of Grenache (70%), Cinsault (20%) and Syrah (10%). The wine is meant to be a “fun country wine”, meaning you don’t need to lay it down for a decade to enjoy it. This is a beautiful light ruby in the glass, showing juicy red fruit from the grenache and cinsault and a hint of spice from the Syrah. It has a silky mouth feel and really shows its pedigree despite its low price. This would make a perfect pairing for some the lighter fare that you’re starting to indulge in as the weather turns warmer. It’s also about the most perfect Easter wine I can think of given its color and its affinity for salty ham.
Find it now in the produce section @ $15.99 and come taste it this Friday (4/11) from 5-7pm for free in the store.