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2022 Domaine Gramenon Côtes du Rhône 'Ceps Centenaires La Mémé'

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Original price $180.00 - Original price $180.00
Original price
$180.00 - $180.00
Current price $180.00

Region: Rhône Valley, France

Grape: Grenache

Culinary Suggestions: Wagyu Steak, Roast Duck, Lamb Shanks, Venison, Quail

Vineyard Practice: Biodynamic


South of Montelimar, where the A7 Autoroute passes the aptly named ‘Porte du Soleil’, the wine producing regions of the southern, or ‘Meridionale’ Rhône commence.  This is the gateway to Provence and the Mediterranean. It is in this very northern outpost where you will find one of the very best producers in the entire Rhône valley, Domaine Gramenon.

Gramenon produces some of my absolute favourite wines from the Southern Rhône from their bio dynamic vineyards way out in the North-Eastern part of the Côtes du Rhône, in fact they are in the department of the Drome, not the Vaucluse like nearly all others.

This original part of the domaine is located at 300 meters above sea level on a rare limestone bench.  Over the years the domaine has expanded to 25 hectares by planting more vines, purchasing 4.5 hectares of plots in Vinsobres in 1999, and land in nearby Valreas in 2007.  Today the estate is run by Michele Aubery and one of her children, son Maxime-Francois Laurent. 

The estate is officially certified Biodynamic by Demeter (since 2009) but has been farmed in a bio-organic manner since the mid 1980's. As their vineyards are isolated from others they do not have to worry about any cross-pollution from their neighbours spraying.

The fruit is fermented without sulphur using indigenous yeasts. Everything is moved by gravity, there are no pumps.  Some cuvees are aged in vat and others in old demi-muids and foudres. The wine is bottled without fining or filtration with only some cuvees receiving light amounts of sulphur.

This style of non-interventionist winemaking 'par excellence has forged the estate a legendary reputation and following. The wines age wonderfully when correctly stored, a 1991 Ceps Centenaires tasted recently only just starting to fade but still delicious, it's once sultry youth transformed over time into a gentle and beautiful whisper.

Domaine Gramenon has become famous over the past 20 or so years because of the talent and dedicated work of; firstly Philippe Laurent, then Michelle and now Michele and Maxime. - Importer Note

Tasting Notes

 In December of 1978 Philippe Laurent and Michèle Aubéry-Laurent bought a barn and 12 hectares of old vines in Montbrison.  Their first harvest took place in 1979 with their first cuvee being the Ceps Centenaires; it became a cult wine immediately and has been ever since. The vines that it comes from are about 130 years old these days. This wine is always extraordinarily elegant, fleeting floral aromas and gorgeous, crystal pure fruit flavours fan and dance around the senses. It's a wine that makes me wonder and also ponder - in essence though it's a beautiful wine; graceful and very very sensual. If Grenache were Pinot Noir then this would be Gramenon's Musigny. - Importer Note