2018 Domaine de Beaurenard Cotes du Rhone Villages 'Rasteau'
by JJ Buckley Fine Wines
On Sale: $24.94 (was: $29.94)*
Rasteau is fast becoming a secret weapon for fans of the Southern Rhone, as this tiny AOC (once just Cotes du Rhone) offers unbelievable value, and is a major step above basic Cotes du Rhone. The simple fact is, despite the lower pricing, in Rasteau the “top wines are a match for anything coming out of the Southern Rhône” (Dunnuck).
Beaurenard is definitely making one of the top wines in Rasteau right now, and despite their very respectable Châteauneuf du Pape, this Cotes du Rhone Villages is “a solid alternative for much less money” (Wine Advocate). This is such a major step up from your typical Cotes du Rhone, and considering this biodynamically grown Grenache blend comes from one of the Rhone’s most historic producers, you really can’t go wrong at just $24.94!
The Coulon family have been producing estate-bottled wine for about a century now, and are “one of the great families of Chateauneuf du Pape” (Parker). Their two Rasteau cuvees have long been an insider’s secret however, particularly given the pricing. While generic ‘Cotes du Rhone’ can often be found for less, we think a Cote du Rhone villages like this one from Rasteau is the real sweet spot between quality and value, especially in 2018. This “undeniably delicious” year (Dunnuck) seems much more suited to these more charming, approachable reds than the serious cuvees. Honestly, it feels like you have to spend $40-$50 to get a 90-92pt Chateauneuf du Pape these days, so why not grab two bottles of Rasteau instead? Cheers!
90-92 points, Jeb Dunnuck: "In addition to their brilliant Chateauneuf du Papes, this estate makes two terrific Rasteau. Their 2018 Rasteau offers a medium to full-bodied, fruit-forward, balanced style as well as the more blue fruit character that’s common in the vintage. With classic pepper, earth, and spice notes, it should easily be an outstanding wine."
90 points, Wine Advocate: "While based in Châteaneuf du Pape, this biodynamically run estate's 2018 Rasteau is a solid alternative for much less money. A blend of 80% Grenache, 17% Syrah and 3% Mourvèdre, it offers scents of sun-warmed stones, hints of garrigue and bold flavors of black cherries and blackberries. It's medium to full-bodied and supple, with a round, silky feel on the palate. Hints of dark chocolate and a cocoa powder-like texture mark the lengthy finish."
*Offer publication date November 18, 2021. Pricing and availability subject to change.