Brusset’s Gigondas is a testament to the low-yielding old vines that grow on small, steep terraced plots located below the great Jurassic calcareous ridge of the Dentelles de Montmirail. The terroir here is heavily influenced by the terrain, and by the soil, too, a combination of clay and rock. Owing to the steep aspect of the vineyard, the grapes are all hand-picked. The resulting wine, comprised of 70% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre, and 15% Syrah, is characterized by immense depth and concentration.
“Les Hauts de Montmirail” is Brusset’s top cuvée. The winery itself is a large and important domaine with vineyards spread through the southern Rhône, primarily in Gigondas and its neighbouring villages. It was among the first estates to introduce small barrels (barriques) for aging. After an extravagant use of wood in the early days, they have brought the marriage between wood and fruit to a nearly ideal point. Hand-sorted, crushed, de-stemmed, and cold-soaked, this wine fermented in large vats and matured in French oak barriques, half of which are new. (Those with a phobia of oak should consider seeking out the winery’s Tradition “Le Grand Montmirail”.) This wine will benefit from eight or more years cellaring to reach its peak.
“A blend of 50% Grenache and 25% each Mourvèdre and Syrah, with a portion of the Mourvèdre and Syrah aged in barrel, the 2018 Gigondas les Hauts de Montmirail features hints of dark fruit, leather, cedar and baking spices on the nose. It’s full-bodied, rich, creamy and concentrated, finishing lush and long, with hints of cocoa and garrigue on the finish.”
(93-95) points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, October 2019
“The Grenache is what stands out here aromatically with its bright and open red berry fruits, despite the blend. Then on the palate the Syrah and Mourvèdre really make themselves known – dense, chiselled tannins, powerful tannic undertow and a long, deep, bass-driven finish, it echoes. Fresh, classic Gigondas. It wears the oak with ease, fruit to the fore. Grown on terraces just underneath the Dentelles de Montmirail, all destemmed, half the wine is matured in new oak barrels. Drinking window 2020 – 2028.”
93 points, Decanter, September 2019
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