Collines Rhodaniennes: Domaine Georges Vernay 'Fleurs de Mai' Syrah 2019
This IGP Collines Rhodaniennes 'Syrah' is the red equivalent of the Vernay's excellent value Viognier 'Pied de Samson'. Both are grown on the upper plateau above the slopes of Condrieu. This is archetypal Northern Rhône Syrah - pepper, crushed rocks and spice.
The 'Fleurs de Mai' cuvée derives its name from the May flower peach trees that were once planted on the spot. The now 50 year old vines produce only 500 cases of a juicy, textured wine that is something akin to a junior Côte Rôtie.
|Style||Red Wine, Sec, Full-bodied, Non Sparkling|
|Wine Region||Rhône, Ardèche|
|Grape Variety (Cépage)||Syrah|
|Food & Wine Matching||Beef, Casserole|
|Cellarage||Drink 2020 to 2028.|
|Vinification||Hand-harvest grapes are vinified and the wine is matured in old oak vats for 8 months, botled in the spring following harvest.|
|Alcohol By Volume (%)||13.5|
Domaine Georges Vernay
The Vernay name is synonymous with quality Viognier. Christine Vernay's father Georges (1926-2017) was instrumental in keeping the Condrieu appellation from extinction in the 1960s when there were only 8 hectares left under vine! The Vernays have worked tirelessly to promote Viognier and are largely responsible for its current renaissance and newfound global popularity. Christine Vernay took over winemaking responsibilities here in 1997 and is assisted in the management of the estate by her husband Paul Amsellem. Today the Vernays farm 7.5 hecatres of vines at Condrieu, which puts them in the top 3 growers in volume terms (alongside Cuilleron & Guigal). Domaine Georges Vernay is widely regarded as being among the very best sources of Condrieu, they also produce an excellent Vin de Pays Viognier, from higher altitude vines called 'Le Pied de Samson' as well as an impressive range of red wines comprising a fruity Vin de Pays Syrah, Saint Joseph and Côte Rôtie.
"Domaine Georges Vernay is the flagship of Condrieu. Its vines were planted in the AOC in 1936, and it remained the only domaine in Condrieu for many years, until others finally started believing in Viognier. Today, third-generation vintner Christine Vernay runs the estate, crafting whites that are both opulent and pure. Her Côte-Rôties are equally impressive."
James Molesworth - Wine Spectator.
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