An unusual wine for Argentina, this Malbec from Luján de Cuyo spent eight-and-a-half years in old oak before it was bottled in May 2019. Dominated by the aging, it presents a nose of peat, camphor, black olive and dry flowers; fruit is very much an afterthought. Well-developed, conveying a gentle feel, a silky texture and active tannins that lightly brush the gums to augur a long life span. A sunny Burgundy made in the old style to last for a very long time. (Joaquín Hidalgo, Vinous, October 2020) — 7 months ago
I’ve been staring at this vintage in my collection for some time now. Decided it was time even though further benefits would come with more years in bottle. That’s not to say, we are not throughly enjoying this on a lazy sunny evening.
The nose reveals; lemon custard to meringue, green apple, lime zest, pineapple, grapefruit with pith, amazing honeysuckle, fruit blossoms, honey, flinty notes, some dry herbs, nuts, hints of butterscotch & toffee, some very light vanillin, crushed limestone minerals, jasmine and white spring flowers.
The body is round and voluptuous. The mouthfeel is incredible and creamy. Flat out gorgeous and sexy. lemon custard to meringue that falls into lemon sourness, green apple, lime zest, pineapple, grapefruit with pith, stone fruits, amazing honeysuckle, fruit blossoms, honey, steely & flinty notes, some dry herbs, nuts, more butterscotch toffee than the nose, some very light vanillin, more white spice with a little heat than the nose, crushed limestone minerals, powdery chalkiness jasmine and white spring flowers with greens. The acidity is amazing pure and simple. The long, round, voluptuous, gorgeous, elegant, incredibly well balanced and persists several minutes. Such a great producer! Believe the hype.
Excellent with Brie & white crackers with a drizzle of honey. As well, with the dry white Grand Queso which, has some nice nuttiness that plays well into the wine.
Notes on their vinification. Their viticulture is largely natural, with the old vines severely pruned in winter to reduce yields. After hand-harvesting, the fruit is pressed immediately and settled for half a day. Fermentation is largely in cuve, and the malolactic proceeds at its own pace, followed by a year’s aging in small oak barrels called feuillettes.
The feuillettes, about half the size of a barrique, are one of the keys to the expressiveness of Raveneaus wines. Averaging seven to eight years in age, they don’t contribute new oak aromas and flavors, but serve to gently open the wine during the élevage. This enhances the wonderful perfume and creamy texture that are the hallmarks of these wines, particularly when they are mature.
Their Foret Vineyard is only .67 ha. and the vines are roughly 15 years of age.
Photos of; Owner-Son and half of the winemaking team Jean-Marie Raveneau, Isabelle Ravenea in the cellar and the metal work sign that hangs above their facilities. If not for that sign, you would never know they were there on a quiet back street not far from the center of town. — 2 years ago
Loved this so much I had to get more so it’s the equivalent of “girl who was that I need their number” in wine. It is rough in alcohol(14%) but also high in acid and fucking silky in tannins and the fruit is ripe but not jammy. So this is if you met a sassy blackberry on a hot summer day on a sunny street corner but the blackberry had a parasol so it was cool as a cucumber despite the hot circumstances. An elegant balanced blackberry sailing on a wicked oak barque. — 3 years ago
Walks the line of old world and new world. Full of rich and sunny California fruit and balanced by the complex array of secondaries here. Baked pear and ripe yellow peach, canned pineapple, toasted nuts, coffee grounds, yellow flowers, brown spices, honey, cream soda. — 9 months ago
First rose, with fish on a very sunny easter weekend in bath with Amalia — a year ago
It might shock you, but my favorite rosé is not French but instead comes from California! Blasphemy, I know - but Bedrock's Ode to Lulu is just that good. The difficulty is actually finding a bottle. For the last three years, I've only been allocated a case (or less) to sell here in Denver. It's possible you are one of the select few I've actually told about this wine... If not, now is your chance. This is the first year there's an "okay" supply. It won't last, but you should be able to get a bottle.
So yes, it's not French but it's made in the same style and method of Tempier Bandol Rosé- the most sought after, cult rosé out there. The name "Ode to Lulu" is actually an homage to the 4.5 foot tall, 101 year old woman named "Lulu" Peyraud (born Lucie Tempier) whose father gifted the Mourvedre heavy estate to her and her husband Lucien Peyraud. The wines they would go on to produce from the 1940's onward quite literally defined Bandol and put it on the map as some of the best rosés out there. She's still alive and presumably drinking plenty of wine.
This California-born "Ode to Lulu" is modeled after the great Tempier, but has some unique properties compared to it's French namesake. For one, the vines are EXTREMELY old. Tempier defined itself by focusing on old Mourvèdre and Grenache plantings, but even these French vineyards cannot compare to what Bedrock is working with in California. If you don't know, Bedrock is the winery of Morgon Twain Peterson, son of legendary Ravenswood founder Joel Peterson. Morgon grew up making wine and through his father has cultivated relationships with some of the most important heritage vineyards in California. The "Ode to Lulu" is made from Mourvèdre and Grenache planted as far back as 1888! These are some of the oldest plantings of these grapes around and make for unbelievable wines. Tempier's average vine age is around 40 years old today. Bedrock's is over 3x as old. Insane.
Morgon may be young, but he has a life time of winemaking experience. He started making wine with his father when he was 5 years old and hasn't stopped yet. In addition to absorbing his father's knowledge on heritage vineyards, he is a real student in the world of wine, earning a "Masters of Wine" designation (this industry's highest achievement). I've been drinking his wine for several years and I can say that his wine is made extremely thoughtfully and with expert attention to detail. This is true even with a wine as humble as rosé.
Unlike most California pink wine, Bedrock is not produced by "bleeding off" juice from a red wine. Instead, the grapes are picked early and separately at very low potential alcohols, and whole cluster pressed with low extraction. This preserves the freshness and acidity, creating a wine of clarity. In an old blog post I dug up, Morgon explains this idea:
"I pick at potential alcohols lower on the scale where brightness and lift still exist. This is not to say that fruit does not matter—I use Mourvedre from a block planted over 120 years ago for requisite concentration of complexity of flavor—but like fine champagne, the wonders of rosé lie in its unbearable lightness of being."
I agree with this idea of rosé and I think most people instinctively do as well. It's no coincidence that our best selling bottles come from provence. However, I urge you to pick up at least one bottle of this Ode to Lulu. It's a wine that's close in spirit to the best French rosé but made from vineyards that are American and unrivaled in age.
This is the fourth vintage of Ode to Lulu I've tasted, and I would say that's the most elegant yet. The 2015 was maybe my favorite for it's depth and I picked a few up to age, drinking my last bottle recently... This new vintage is great now, but it will reward with a short cellaring time. Honestly, if you can hide 2 bottles and drink them before fall or into next year, you will be blown away. Bandol rosé is a wine that improves dramatically over the course of 6 months to several years (Tempier Rosé is known to go decades). This bedrock is no different.
I can personally attest to past vintages gaining depth with time. How is this possible? Unlike other rosé which should be drank young, Bandol and Ode to Lulu are made of Mourvedre, a grape that is naturally reductive and resistant to oxidation. Further, the acidity is high and alcohol low. As the acidity starts to fall away, a depth and richness of character will emerge. In fruitier/riper rosé with more alcohol, this richness becomes too sweet and cloying... Not the case here. This keep balanced through time, gaining complexity while remaining refreshing.
You should buy this wine. However, I think there is one more important facet to rosé that I should mention before you do... Rosé is not always about what's in the glass itself. Rosé is really an ethereal thing... It's more so an "essence" of terroir and vintage rather than a sturdy, hard representation like red wine is... Sorry if that doesn't make sense but what I'm trying to say is that sometimes rosé is more about the place and the people you enjoy it with than the exact flavors themselves. Of course, we cannot all visit the picturesque village of Bandol to visit Lulu Peyraud; but I think, with this sunny Colorado weather, we can come close. Perhaps Morgon said it better than I can:
"Proper rosé is refreshing, life-nourishing stuff that revives the soul... I drink as much for pure pleasure as for intellectual stimulation. In the warmer months there is something sacred about a late afternoon meal of cold chicken, fresh garden tomatoes, and rosé. It is one body in the sacred trilogy of rustic simplicity." - Morgon Twain Peterson
#rose #oldvine #lulu #tempier #bedrockwineco — 3 years ago
Like an over-ripe peach, without the sloppiness which generally indicates you're eating one, slightly dry on the finish. Found this hiding in the bottom of the refrigerator... Can't believe it was still there! Nice for a sunny, mid-80's afternoon.
Relaxing while listening to the '2000 Year Old Man'; RIP Carl Reiner. — 10 months ago
We finished day one in Napa at Outpost. I had to speed take notes on the True. We were about 10-15 minutes late and I could sense our host was ready to go home. Seven wines do take a little time. Especially, with me taking notes. I wished I had more time to be as detailed as I like. Some of these wines were quite good and deserved some more time & focus.
On the nose; jammy dark cassis, blackberries, dark cherries, plum, creamy black raspberries, strawberries.
Same fruits on the palate. Dark soils, dry crushed rocks, limestone minerals, berry cola, leather, wood plank, black pepper, violets, and purple flowers. Acidity is excellent and the polished, balanced finish goes on and on. Beautiful wine!
Photos of, their Zinfandel vines as viewed from their patio, the soil composition of the True Vineyard, Outpost grounds shot through an old wagon wheel and their tasting patio on beautiful sunny Howell Mountain day. — 2 years ago
I’m opening my last bottle of the 03 Larcis Ducasse after recently reading a couple of professional write ups about the wines fruit fading and to drink up. I did not find that to be the case w/ my last bottle. I found the wine to be around it’s peak form with another 5 years plus ahead. On the nose; menthol, eucalyptus, ripe; dark cherries, cherries, blackberries, plum, poached & candied strawberries, notes of blue fruits, black raspberries, cherry cola, touch herbaceous; sage & bay leaf, limestone & rich, moist, black, turned earth, crushed dry rocks, graphite, dry soil/clay with dry & fresh dark florals. The body is medium full. Tannins are 75-80% resolved. The length, structure, tension & balance are right where I’d expect them to be and are quite enjoyable. The palate is very similar to the nose. Menthol, eucalyptus, ripe; dark cherries, cherries, blackberries, plum, poached & candied strawberries, notes of blue fruits, black raspberries, cherry cola, touch herbaceous; sage & bay leaf, limestone & rich, moist, black, turned earth, crushed dry rocks, dry & very grippy, edgy minerals, Montecristo cigar, graphite, dry soil/clay with dry & fresh dark florals. The acidity is lovely and the long finish is well balanced with an even tug of war between fruit & earth with the dry earth dominate on the long set. Photos of; of their great southern exposed sunny hillside vineyard, the old craved stone entrance and Nicolas Thienpont & Stephane Derenoncourt. Producer notes & history...Chateau Larcis Ducasse began during the days of the ancient Romans, who valued the best hillside vineyards in the area. The early part of the modern era for Larcis Ducasse begins in 1893, when Henri Raba bought the Saint Emilion vineyard. After Henri Raba passed away in 1925, his wife and son Andre Raba continued managing Larcis Ducasse. His niece, Helene Gratiot Alphandery, inherited the property in 1941. She managed Chateau Larcis Ducasse until 1990. Then her son, Jacques-Olivier Gratiot took control of the property after she passed away and he remains in charge today. Chateau Larcis Ducasse remains the property of the Gratiot Alphandery family today. Prior to 2003, it had been years since the wines of Chateau Larcis Ducasse were prized by Bordeaux wine lovers. The wine had fallen out of favor, due to a lack of attention and effort. That changed in 2002 when they hired Saint Emilion consultants, Nicolas Thienpont and Stephane Derenoncourt to turn things around and manage the estate. One of the first improvements at the property suggested by them was to create a new drainage system. The next step was to change harvesting practices. Prior to 2002, the grapes were often picked too early and over a very short duration of 2 to 3 days. Now, the harvest takes place when the fruit is ripe and picking can take as long as 2 to 3 weeks. Starting with the 2005 vintage, all work in the vineyards moved to 100% organic farming methods. The 10.85 hectare St. Emilion vineyard of Larcis Ducasse is planted to 78% Merlot and 22% Cabernet Franc. This shows a slight change in the vineyard, as more Cabernet Franc has been added to the plantings since 2003. The vineyard is located just around the bend in the road from Chateau Pavie. In fact, their vines but up against each other. They are surrounded by more good producers. To the south, is Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere and La Gaffeliere, and as you move north, Chateau Troplong Mondot and Chateau Pavie. The terroir of Chateau Larcis Ducasse is a mixture of soils. The vines on the top of plateau and the slopes have a south facing exposure. At the higher elevations on the plateau, the terroir is limestone, clay and chalk soils. As you travel further down the slopes towards the terraces, the terroir is a blend of chalky limestone, marl, sand, silt and clay soil. At the base of the slopes, you find sand and clay soils. On average the vines are 35 years of age. While the older plantings were done at a vine density of 6,600 vines per hectare, as the vineyard continues to be slowly replanted, the vine density is increasing with each subsequent replanting. The new plantings are being done at 7,500 vines per hectare. They are also using budwood obtained through selection massale. The yields are kept low at Larcis Ducasse. In 2009, the effective yields were only 25 hectoliters per hectare.To produce the wine of Chateau Larcis Ducasse, the grapes are whole berry fermented. The fruit is transported by gravity flow into traditional, cement tanks for fermentation. Cuvaison takes between 25-28 days. There are no pump overs. Pigeages are conducted during fermentation. Malolactic fermentation takes place in barrel. The wine of Chateau Larcis Ducasse is then aged in 67% new, French oak barrels, which are mixed in size, between standard barrels and 500 liter French, oak casks. The wine is then aged for an average of 18 to 20 months in barrel before bottling. The production averages close to 4,000 cases depending on what the vintage gives. — 3 years ago