Saturday, 24 December 2011

Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage Classic Rouge (2008)

Cave de Tain (the producer behind this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage Rouge) is one of the leading producers in the Northern Rhone. Farming more than 1000 hectares of vineyards and single handily producing around 50% of the entire production of Crozes Hermitage AOC, there are few that would argue that the wines of the Cave de Tain co-operative are benchmarks for the region.

Wrapped around the famous hillock that forms the 140 hectares of the Hermitage AOC, the 1240 hectare Crozes Hermitage AOC is larger and occupies slightly lower and flatter vineyard sites, meaning that the wines of Crozes Hermitage are more accessibly priced than those from other appellations in the Northern Rhone.

100% Syrah, 75% of the Syrah grapes destined for this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage Classic Rouge were harvested by machine, and 25% were harvested by hand from the vineyards cultivated by the different growers who make up the co-operative. After picking, the grapes destined for this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage Classic Rouge  were fermented in steel vats before 30% of this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage Rouge was then matured in large (400 litre) oak barrels.

In the glass, this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage is an intense ruby red, which makes the limited legs of this wine easy to see despite the fact that this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage only contains 12.5% abv. Restrained on the nose, this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage shows a great level of typicity in its black cherry, bonfire smoke and acerbic spice bouquet. Carried through to the palate, these flavours offer an impressive Northern Rhone expression of the Syrah grape. Vibrantly spicy, the fruit flavours of this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage certainly play second fiddle to the anise, pepper and cedar notes that dominate the moderate to long palate.

Moderate to high tannin and acidity suggest a reasonable propensity for aging. Consume this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage up to 5 five years after release.
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Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage Classic Rouge (2008)

Score: 86/100 – An expressive Northern Rhone Syrah. This 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage exudes a powerful spiciness, but never seems too acerbic.

Value for Money: 8/10 –Available at £10 per bottle, this 2008 Cave de Tain Crozes Hermitage is an accessible way into the wines of the Northern Rhône. An impressive wine for the price.
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