Chateau Saint Esteve Grand Reserve
Cotes du Rhone Villages A/C, Rhone Valley, France
The Saint Esteve wines are the result of two centuries of knowledge and experience. The vineyards are set in the heart of the garrigue of the Rhone Valley, with the herbs and flowers of this beautiful region playing their part in the make-up of the wines. The property is well away from major roads, and this helps the process of organic viticulture practised by Marc Francais.
There are just over a dozen producers in this appellation, which is set amongst hills where pines, oak, wild strawberries and herbs thrive. One of Marc's foremost principles is keeping yields low.This is how he maintains the quality of his production, and is the difference between a producer who wants plenty of wine to bring to market, and a producer who only wants an excellent wine to bring to market.
Marc Francais has this philosophy; it is not a secret,you can't hurry nature, you must let it do its own thing. In the years when the result is not as it should be, the answer is simple-he doesn't make the wine.
"From a small estate where wild oregano, rosemary, thyme and lavender grow on the hillside, this is an organic wine relying mainly on Grenache. Made in very modest amounts, it's all about supple plummy fruit, and ripe and round tannins."
"Fresh tar and white-pepper spice aromas. Intense and delicious. Earthy, meaty, peppery, tarry, full-bodied and a spicy finish. Pan-fry a duck breast and serve sliced and fanned, drizzled with a black-fruit coulis."
"Lashings of brambly fruit with some attractive liquorish notes."
Chateau Saint Esteve d'Uchaux
The Massif d'Uchaux appellation was created in 2005. Since then, it holds the record for the lowest yields of all AOC villages. Altitude of 65 to 120 meters, quartz limestone, sand and sandstone, sandstone and sands of Montmout. Facing south, south south-west.