Domaine de L’Hortus, Grande Cuvee Rouge, AOC Pic Saint Loup, Herault, Occitanie, France, 2014
This wine: lot No. L16102 (below front label), bottle No. 56269, a syrah dominated blend, with mourvedre and grenache noir, coated natural cork closure, 14% abv, ex-producer, €21.85 (03/17)
Consumer tasting note: a syrah dominated blend with strong aromas of black then red cherry, spicy warm black liquorice, a touch of creamed coconut, black currant and dried herbs; medium-full bodied with fine tannins and fresh(ish) acidity, with a rich palate of over-ripe black cherry, liquorice, red currant jelly and that creamed coconut again. Finishes soundly long.
Drink now – RTD, but will improve – Wait. Decant for an hour.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, deep intensity ruby, showing tears [no sediment].
Nose: clean, pronounced intensity, developing, with aromas as they come, of red cherry, a low-key lactic edge, hint of creamy in a lactic sense coconut, touch of aged steak fat, red currant, a touch spicy, waxy, glace cherry, squashed ripe blackberry, hints of black cherry, dried herbs, a touch of oak, a touch savoury, a hint of blackcurrant, warm black liquorice, leaf humus.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, ripe fine-grained medium tannins, medium (+) alcohol, medium body, medium (+) intensity, a velvety texture, with flavours of stewed red cherry, an edge of lactic-creamy coconut, red currant jelly, fragrant black berry, richer over-ripe black cherry, warm black liquorice, a touch savoury. A long (>30s) length with a clean finish of black berries, savoury and black liquorice edged.
Quality: very good, well-balanced acidity and fine-grained ripe tannins with well-integrated high(ish) alcohol; suiting the strong intensity, and lesser concentration; showing a developing profile of moderate to high complexity, with evidence of exposure to well-integrated oak (eg coconut, lactic, oak, spice), and time in bottle (eg leaf humus, meaty, savoury, waxy). Follows into a sound long length.
Drinking readiness/ageing potential: can drink now, but has potential for further ageing over say 2-4 years – a sound structure and balance, developing nicely, with a profile that should broaden and deepen with time.