2015 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône 1.5L Magnum
There is no more classic entry point into the wines of the Rhône than this bottling from E. Guigal.
The Guigal family owns some of the most hallowed vineyards in the Rhône Valley and the world and makes some of the most sought-after wines in the world. The Guigal Côtes du Rhône Rouge offers tremendous warmth, spice and pleasure, but in a decidedly individual fashion. It is, unlike virtually every other Côtes du Rhône, based on Syrah, a Northern Rhône approach that lends greater aromatic intensity and structure, though is far more difficult and costly to produce in the Southern Rhône. The aging also goes far other wine in the appellation in its category, a minimum of two years in a combination of stainless steel and foudres, with a deliberate blending over the course of that time that results in a wine of remarkable harmony and complexity. It is an extraordinary value and a benchmark for the region from one of the world’s most lauded producers.
91 points, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate. "As usual, the 2015 Cotes du Rhone features a majority of Syrah, largely sourced from the western side of the Rhone. Spicy, peppery, hickory aromas lead off, adding berries up front and then moving into darker fruit and more savory notes of black olive by the finish. This medium to full-bodied wine finishes long and silky, avoiding any of the vintage’s hard tannins, while still boasting the concentration to drink well through at least 2023."
90 points, Jeb Dunnuck. "Brilliant ruby. Vibrant cherry and cassis aromas are complicated by licorice, violet and floral nuances. Sappy, gently sweet dark fruit flavors show very good energy, and a peppery nuance adds lift and spicy bite. Finishes smoky and long, with supple tannins sneaking in late to add shape. Leading off the reds, the 2015 Cotes du Rhone is mostly Syrah yet has a big dose of 40% Grenache and 5% Mourvedre. It’s another terrific vintage from this wine which rarely misses. Ripe black fruits, peppery herbs, and lavender notes all emerge from this medium to full-bodied, concentrated yet silky wine. Drink it any time over the coming decade."
90 points, Antonio Galloni's Vinous. "Deep, brilliant ruby color. Expansive dark berry, cherry, floral and spice aromas show very good clarity and pick up darker olive and licorice notes as the wine opens up. Sweet and energetic on the palate, offering juicy cherry, blackberry flavors and a spicy jolt of cracked pepper. Finishes with impressive length, sneaky tannins and a lingering suggestion of candied flowers. As usual, this bottling, which is made in massive volume and available seemingly everywhere, delivers outstanding value. It’ll age well, too, if one is so inclined.”