Abélard, Vin de Pays du Vaucluse – 2010
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.
- Viticulture: Organic and biodynamic practices
- Vine Age: Grenache - over 40 years old; Syrah - 30 years old
- Soil: Clay and limestone, very stony
- Elevation: 540 meters (1,771 feet)
- Exposure: Southwest facing
- 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
- Varietal Composition: 85% Grenache, 15% Syrah
- Alcohol: 14.5%
Appearance: Deep, brilliant garnet
Nose: Abélard’s rich brooding character lifts from the glass, displaying ripe, red fruit, black cherry and notes of sweet spice and mocha
Palate: Rich and concentrated; spice and silky tannins bring structure and depth.
Finish: Ample and lengthy
- Serving Suggestions: Enjoy with roast beef, venison, duck and roasted vegetables. Decant for 2-3 hours and serve at room temperature.
Chêne Bleu Abélard, Vin de Pays du Vaucluse – 2010 – The Wine Advocate – 95 Points
When tasting the 2010 Abelard alongside the Heloise, the derivation of the names becomes obvious. Abelard is the bigger, richer wine—the more "masculine," to deploy a somewhat dated/sexist stereotype. This full-bodied Grenache-dominated (85%) wine is packed with black cherries, star anise and other ground spices, and features a wonderfully long silky finish. Despite the size and concentration, the wine is complex and elegant, not an easy feat. It should drink well over the next 10-15 years.
Chêne Bleu Abélard, Vin de Pays du Vaucluse – 2010 – Vinous – 92 Points
Vivid ruby. Assertively perfumed blackberry and cherry liqueur aromas are accented by hints of vanilla and star anise. Broad and rich, but shows very good energy and nerve to the black and blue fruit and spicecake flavors. Finishes supple, sweet and very long, offering fine-grained tannins and a hint of candied lavender.
Chêne Bleu Abélard, AOC Ventoux – 2010 – Jancis Robinson – 17 Points
Even though this has more Grenache, it smells darker than the Héloïse. Thicker texture, a little more chewy and savoury, but satisfying and all in harmony and with good freshness on the finish. Needs longer to come round fully.
Chêne Bleu Vin de Pays de Vaucluse “Abélard” – 2010 – Wine Spectator – 92 Points
Ripe and enticing, offering layers of fig, dark currant and blackberry fruit that are well-steeped but still detailed, woven with notes of anise, warm tobacco and roasted alder. Delivers a broad feel on the finish, with the wood playing a prominent role. Very solid. Grenache and Syrah. Drink now through 2022.