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Eye : Deep ruby red with dark tints.
Nose : Small red fruit, blackberry, morello cherry Intensely aromatic, powerful and elegant.
Palate : Supple attack with a balanced supple structure, concentration and elegant tannins. Fully expressive of the terroir.
Overall : With all the virility of the Côte Brune, La Turque also has all the subtlety and femininity of the Côte Blonde.
Taking longer to develop in the glass than the exuberant and sexy la Mouline, the 2012 Cote Rotie la Turque (93% Syrah and 7% Viognier that will see four years in new oak) offers Bordeaux-like notes of lead pencil and graphite to go with olive, smoked herbs, pepper and ripe dark fruits. Possessing a touch less raw material than both the 2009 and 2010, it nevertheless has full-bodied richness, serious mid-palate depth, lots of sweet tannin and a fabulous finish. It will need 4-6 years of cellaring and drink well over the following two to three decades.
One of the highlight tastings during my two weeks spent working in the northern Rhône was with Philippe and Marcel Guigal, who in this critic’s opinion, consistently fashion some of the greatest wines in the world. Looking at the 2011 Côte Rôties, which were bottled earlier this year, these are gorgeous wines that show the perfumed, sexy nature of the vintage; yet, they have more density, concentration and depth than just about every other wine from the vintage. Marcel characterized the vintage as charming and elegant, and while they’re insanely good even today, they’ll evolve gracefully and have broad drink windows. The 2012s should be bottled next year and this is another terrific vintage at this estate, which shouldn’t be a shock to anyone who follows the estate. The wines are already expressive, yet have more fat and texture than the 2011s, although maybe not the same level of focus or length. I suspect this is another vintage that will show nicely on release next year and age gracefully, with broad drink windows. The 2013s, in contrast, are inky, masculine, structured and not very much fun to taste at the moment. The extended elevage will help, but these will certainly be longer term prospects that will demand cellaring.
Features warm fig bread and ganache notes out front, followed by densely layered blackberry, plum and black currant reduction flavors. Ganache details echo through the finish, along with Turkish coffee and smoldering alder hints. A large-scale wine that should cruise in the cellar. Best from 2020 through 2040.