From: Tavel, Southern Rhône, France
Blend: 50% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 15% Cinsault, and a 15% blend of Clairette, Bourboulenc, Mourvèdre, and Old Vine Carignan
Taste: An intense, shiny rosé filled with cherry and wild strawberry flavors. The nose reveals a refreshing depth of fruit with hints of raspberries and herbs. The wine, resplendent in a deep pink hue, presents distinct mineral aromas underlined by undergrowth nuances. On the palate, it's fruit-driven and delicate, featuring a streak of minerality and a gentle, persistent finish.
Pairing: This Tavel rosé from Domaine Chantepierre is a gastronomic delight and can hold its own against a wide variety of dishes. From aperitifs to cooked meats, spicy Provencal dishes to roasted poultry (see our suggested pairing below: David Tanis’ Chicken Paillard With Black Olive Tapenade), and even baked goat's cheese. A particularly delightful pairing is grilled salmon steaks topped with freshly cracked black peppercorns, a match that truly allows this robust, spicy, yet juicy rosé to shine.
Chicken Paillard With Black Olive Tapenade
By David Tanis
About. In the realm of rosé, it is easy to mistake it as a wine limited to warm, sunny porches, and poolside afternoons. Yet nestled along the right bank of the Rhône river in the Gard district, close to Avignon, lies Tavel. It's here, in a geological marvel of soils scattered with galets roulés, fine sand, and fractured limestone that a unique wine emerges. This is not your typical rosé - this is Tavel.
Unlike its Provencal counterparts that speak of spring and summer, Tavel is a wine for all seasons, including the cooler months, when imaginings cultivate images of fireplaces rather than beaches. Domaine Chantepierre, a notable producer from the region, captures the essence of this extraordinary rosé.
Tavel is a singular rosé-only appellation, making the term "Tavel rosé" a redundancy. The color spectrum of Tavel is indeed exceptional, ranging from a deep watermelon shade to the fiery hues of a late sunset. A result of winemaking techniques that incorporate a longer maceration of the grape skins, giving it a liminal space along wine’s spectral continuum.
A quote by Paul Sanchez, director of Les Vignerons de Tavel, encapsulates this sentiment: “There exist four wines: white, rosé, Tavel, and red.”
The 2022 Domaine Chantepierre Tavel reflects this ethos. This wine is not just pink; it's a melody of 50% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 15% Cinsault, and a 15% blend of Clairette, Bourboulenc, Mourvèdre, and Old Vine Carignan. The winemaking process bears more resemblance to red wine production than to typical rosé vinification. It commences with a long maceration of 48-72 hours, followed by a 10-15 day fermentation period at low temperatures. The resulting wine is then aged in stainless steel tanks.
Domaine de Chantepierre is the legacy of the Palyn family who has managed this estate since the late 17th century. Today, the vineyard is co-managed by siblings, Anne Luce Coulomb-Palyn and Christian Paly. It's part of the Cave de Vigneron de Tavel cooperative, representing 85 growers and producing nearly half of Tavel AOC wines. The wine is crafted by Paul Sanches, who uses stainless fermentation and frequent pumping over the must to yield a luscious and rich Côtes du Rhône that punches above its weight considering its modest price.
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