Chêne Bleu

Rhône, France

Abélard, AOC Ventoux – 2012

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  • Introduction

    • Abélard, one of the most distinguished philosophers of medieval times, is most remembered for his tragic romance with the gifted young Héloïse. One of history’s most celebrated couples, Héloïse and Abélard are known for their intellectual brilliance, passionate love affair, eloquent letters and the tragedy that cruelly separated them. Sometimes referred to as “the Romeo and Juliet of France,” they were actually far more complex and accomplished individuals, and their love spanned many decades until the end of their lives, making it a symbol of enduring romantic love. This complex, brooding Grenache blend from older vines seems worthy of Abélard, who combined erudition with deep thinking and a near-fatal attraction.

  • Vineyard Profile

    • Viticulture: Organic and biodynamic practices
    • Vine Age: Grenache - over 40 years old; Syrah - 30 years old
    • Soil: Clay and limestone, very stony
    • Elevation: Syrah: Southwest facing; 540 meters (1,771 feet) Grenache: Northwest facing; 530 meters (1,739 feet)
  • Vinification

    • Fermentation: In wooden tanks, with skin maceration for 5 weeks; 100% malolactic
    • Barrel Aging: 18 months in mix of old and new French oak from various coopers, primarily 228-liter (60-gallon) barrels with medium and medium-plus toast; plus 12 months in concrete tanks
    • Filtration: Unfiltered
    • Fining: Unfined
    • Bottle Aging: 2 years
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 85% Grenache Noir, 15% Syrah
    • Alcohol: 14%
  • Tasting Notes

    • Appearance: Deep, brilliant garnet

      Nose: Rich with notes of cloves, liquorice and pepper, mixed with plum and cherry aromas.

      Palate: Full-bodied and smooth, fresh with velvety tannins and notes of ripe red fruits.

      Finish: Long aromatic finish, with hints of spices and plums.

    • Serving Suggestions: Enjoy with roast beef, venison, duck and roasted vegetables. Decant for 2-3 hours and serve at room temperature.

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Reviews

  • Chêne Bleu Abélard, AOC Ventoux – 2012 – The Tasting Panel – 95 Points

    Thirty- and 40-year-old vines grown on stony clay and limestone soil in the south of France produced this marvelous blend of 85% Grenache Noir and 15% Syrah, which spent 18 months in French oak and two years in bottle. A perfume of lilac and licorice exudes from the glass. The deep and dark palate is beautifully assembled, with velvet-lined tannins, dried heather, black cherry, and winsome notes of peppered plum.

  • Chêne Bleu Abélard, AOC Ventoux – 2012 – VinePair – #17 2020 Top 50 Wines – 94 Points

    This wine is wonderful. It smells like a forest in autumn, and cooking herbs like oregano and rosemary. There is also a hint of bramble fruit (blackberries, raspberries) fresh off the prickly vine. The palate is savory, with a whiff of black pepper, and the tannins are still a bit dusty around the edges, but the wine is drinking well now. This is a great wine for roast pork, turkey, or any lean meat on the holiday table.

  • Chêne Bleu Abélard, AOC Ventoux – 2012 – Wine Spectator – 91 Points

    Rich and broad in feel, with a lightly roasted edge to the mix of crushed plum, blackberry and raspberry fruit. Garrugue, singed alder and warm stone notes emerge steadily through the still-grippy finish. Grenache and Syrah. Drink now through 2024.

  • Chêne Bleu Abélard, Vin de Pays du Vaucluse — 2012 – The Wine Advocate – 93 Points

    A blend of 85% Grenache and 15% Syrah, the 2012 IGP Vaucluse Abelard is nominally the more "masculine" of the two red cuvées. In fact, this vintage, the Abelard is softer and plusher, albeit slightly less complex. Smoky elements frame ripe black cherries on the nose, while the medium to full-bodied palate is ripe and supple, giving way to a velvety feel on the finish.

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