Critics can get rather esoteric with their reviews at times. Sometimes when you’re done dissecting a review, it’s still hard to tell if the reviewer enjoyed the wine or not. Not so with Jeb Dunnuck’s review of the 2019 Domaine Notre Dame des Pallieres Gigondas Les Mourres Rhône. He comes right out and says “I love it.” That doesn’t happen often in a review.
We love this wine, too.2019 was an impressive vintage for the Southern Rhone, producing some “truly legendary wines,” according to Dunnuck who rated thisGSM blend a 93. This just goes to show that wines that aren’t 100-pointers can still be fantastic wines that critics love.
What’s to love about this wine? We’re a bit infatuated with the backstory of its name. There is, according to the Roux family—who owns the winery—a “miraculous water source” on the edge of the Domaine's estate that is believed to have protected people from a plague in the Middle Ages, a water source where the Virgin Mary appeared.
We know that doesn’t necessarily mean that the vines near that water source will produce grapes that create a wine to fall in love with. But who knows, maybe it does have a little something to do with how good this wine is. After all, the wine’s name is taken from the Gigondas church, a chapel built where the Virgin appeared.
But, Gigondas is also the name of the appellation where the wine is produced, and it’s more likely thefavorable grape growing conditions of the region have something to do with how excellent the wine is. Many of Rhône’s top producers choose to make their wines in Gigondas.
The grapes for the Gigondas wine are grown in the Les Mourres cru of the appellation, in the shadows of the famed Dentelles mountains in Provence. Thevines are old, struggling to gain nourishment from the subsoil of limestone gravel. Struggling for grapevines is beneficial, and the result is a classic Rhône blend of 80% Grenache, 10% Mourvèdre, and 10% Syrah that’splummy, leathery, peppery, and downright sexy.
It’s also astunning value. This fresh—partly due to the cool winds and the nearby forests that help keep the temps down in the region— red that Dunnuck loves and we love isunder $28with the discount we’re able to offer you of 20%. As fall creeps up on us all who aren’t ready for a steady stream of heavy reds yet, the Gigondas isthe perfect wine to reach for to ease us through the transitional season.