Paul Jaboulet Aine, Domaine de Thalabert, AOC Crozes Hermitage, Drome, Northern Rhone, France, 2010
This wine: varietal syrah, natural cork closure, 13.5% abv, BBR, £22 (06/14)
Consumer tasting note: a strong complex nose of ripe black berries and fruits, spice, vanilla, liquorice and tobacco, sweet tar and a touch of dark chocolate; medium-full bodied, tannins a little strident but fine with rich red meat based dishes, a palate of ripe black fruits, spicy, liquorice and a touch of sweet oak. Decant for 30 minutes to an hour.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, deep intensity ruby, showing tears.
Nose: clean, pronounced intensity, developing, with aromas as they come, of a meaty whiff, dusty black cherry, over-ripe black berry, savoury, spicy, vanilla, toast, a little peppery, warm black liquorice, tobacco edged with sweet oak, stewed red plum, beeswax, little smoky, touch of vanilla, sweet tarry-liquorice, slight funk, dark chocolate, touch of sweet gun powder, jammy red berry nuances.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, ripe medium (+) tannins, medium (+) alcohol, medium (+) body, smooth texture and a sense of sweetness in mid-palate, medium (+) intensity, with flavours of ripe black cherry and over-ripe black berry, vanilla, spicy, savoury, liquorice, hints of sweet oak. A medium (+) length, with a clean black cherried-savoury moderately grippy finish.
Quality: very good, tannins a little strident and a touch drying for technical balance, but fine with the right dish ie red meat based; good intensity and concentration, very complex, showing secondary oak influence and tertiary notes including chocolate and tobacco. A slightly disappointing medium-long length.
Drinking readiness/ageing potential: can drink now, but has ageing potential over say 1-2 years, and will keep longer.