Domaine de Marcoux and SC Pannell; Superstars of Grenache

by Simon Evans | Sep 22, 2017
Domaine de Marcoux and SC Pannell
Superstars of Grenache

I don’t know that Grenache is maligned but it certainly doesn’t get the love that it deserves! Such a misunderstood variety it’s something we love here at MW be it classic Rhone, old school Spanish or modern Australian. Grenache has power and length but at its height a lightness and prettiness that you never see in Shiraz and certainly not in Mourvedre.
Without mentioning the elephant in the global room (climate change, okay sorry) Grenache is well placed going forward as it’s a grape that thrives in the sun and doesn’t need a great amount of water. In the future this will become more and more important as we see the landscape of the wine world shift to varieties that don’t need a cool climate.
This week we offer the wines of two star producers of Grenache, Domaine de Marcoux from the Southern Rhone and SC Pannell from McLaren Vale. See below for details including some brilliant reviews for the 2015s.
The following wines are available now at our special offer prices for the next 7 days only. To place your order return the attached form, by email, by fax on 03 9419 6970 or by or calling us on 03 9419 6990.
Domaine de Marcoux
“Over the last 12 years, the biodynamically farmed vineyard has risen to the top of Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s quality hierarchy. The two red wines produced have been stunning, with the regular cuvée of Châteauneuf-du-Pape one of the finest in the appellation, and the limited production Cuvée Vieilles Vignes one of the world’s truly magnificent wines.” 
Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
“Fans of their wines will be thrilled to know that after a brief hiatus the Vieilles Vignes bottling will return with the 2015 vintage. Unsurprisingly, the VV is a knockout, in fact, it’s one of the best wines of the vintage.” 
Josh Raynolds,
2015 Marcoux Châteauneuf-du-Pape
The blend is roughly 85% Grenache, 7% Mourvèdre, 5% Syrah 3% Cinsault.
Naturally fermented and raised without any new oak. For those new to this wine, Marcoux's Châteauneuf is drawn from 13 parcels of vines, biodynamically farmed and dotted across the appellation. These parcels encompass a wide range of soil types, from the sandy soils of Charbonnières, to the red clay and galets in L'Arnesque and Les Bousquets, to the limestone and white clay in Les Esqueirons and Beau Renard, and finally the red clay and gravels of Les Galimardes, Les Serres and Les Plagnes in the south. This means Marcoux are able to produce a wine that truly reflects the Châteauneuf terroir as a whole. It also allows the Domaine to craft balanced wines year in, year out, as each parcel is vinified separately prior to the blending (and any parcels that do not fit the bill are usually sold to the négoce). The 2015 was raised in a blend of 80% concrete vat and 20% tronconique cuves for 18 months and bottled unfiltered. 
Domaine de Marcoux
“Ruby-red. Energetic, mineral-accented aromas of ripe red and dark berries, complicated by suggestions of incense and pungent flowers. Broad and fleshy on entry, then more taut in the midpalate, offering pliant black raspberry and bitter cherry flavors and a suggestion of five-spice powder. Finishes very long and sweet, featuring slow-building tannins, a touch of smokiness and repeating red fruit character. This wine is shaping up to be an outstanding "basic" Châteauneuf.” 
92-94 points, Josh Raynolds,
2015 Marcoux Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes    
Each plot is vinified separately and all of the fruit is treated in the same minimalistic fashion as the classique above. Thus, what you taste, over and above the classique, simply reflects the fruit of these ancient vines and their terroirs. There was no oak used throughout the élevage; the wines are naturally fermented and raised – for 18 months – in concrete alone before being bottled unfiltered.
VERY LIMITED. 97% old vine Grenache and 3% old vine Mourvèdre. Simply, one of the most limited and sought-after wines of Châteauneuf. There was no Vieilles Vignes cuvée made in 2013 or 2014. This is a Grenache masterpiece. The fruit comes from three 'crown-jewel' parcels of exceptionally old vines in Charbonnières and les Esqueirons. Charbonnières - on the northern side of the Crau plateau – lays on mostly on sandy soils with Molassic sandstone, and was planted in 1900. The vines are nearly all Grenache with a few vines of Mourvèdre. The plot in Esqueirons lies behind the ruins of the famous château on the western side of the hill; here the Grenache vines (and some Roussanne) are rooted in limestone and white clay, with some planted in 1900 and the rest in 1949.
Bibendum (importer)
S.C. Pannell
Australia has the oldest Grenache vines in the world and makes some of the best examples of it but because Grenache isn’t held in the same esteem as Shiraz, Pinot or ever (gulp) Cabernet the price is particularly affordable. Steve Pannell is one of the true champions of new world Grenache and his style is unmistakable.
2015 S.C. Pannell Grenache
“In my opinion, this is the finest and most restrained Grenache I've ever made. It's a 'drink and think' kind of wine.”
Steve Pannell
Red fruits of every description lead the wine out of the glass. Plenty of black cherry too. The colour a bright ruby. The wine is mid-weighted with growing sweetness as bright acidity and fine, sandy tannins propel the wine across the gums and down the throat. Long! The core of this seductive elixir is liquid kirsch, pomegranate and a tang of whole-cluster spice. Plush and hedonistic on one hand; finely tuned, savoury and restrained on the other. 96 points.
Ned Goodwin MW, Halliday Wine Companion 2018
The above wines are available now at our special offer prices for the next 7 days only. To place your order return the attached form, by email, by fax on 03 9419 6970 or by or calling us on 03 9419 6990.
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