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Bob Ross

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WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Ross » Tue Aug 01, 2006 2:34 pm

Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. $12 12% alcohol. Imported by V.O.S. Selections, New York, N.Y. Andrea Immer Wine Club.

Andrea Immer sent me a wine last week which fits our Gamay theme -- but a wine that couldn't be more different from Beaujolais.

Deep red color, deep hue, intense fruit aroma with earth, mushroom and spice, very intense plum fruit taste with just the hint of earth, mushrooms and earth; good tannins, medium mouth feel, long finish dominated by that single note, intense plum impression -- hints from time to time of earth and mushrooms and chocolate. Rustic impression. Very long lived in the glass -- two hours or more. Worked well with simple salad with roast chicken slices. Much better with food; the fruit is so intense -- harsh even -- that I could understand why someone might not like this wine. I found it more interesting than pleasurable on its own, but quite good with food. 3*.

Immer's Take: So far the only person I have ever run into who has heard of this wine is the famous French chef Daniel Boulud, from Restaurant Daniel in New York, because he grew up near the region of Cote Roannaise [in the upper Loire Valley]. It used to be a bustling area supplying wines to the French royal court, but other classical zones have eclipsed its popularity and now it produces very tiny quantities [250 acres producing 55,000 cases]. That said, the locals love it (it is served by-the-glass at Roanneâ's famous 3-star Michelin Restaurant Troigros) and so will you.

Although the granite-based soils here are similar to Beaujolais, the wine couldn't be more different. It is rich and plummy on the palate, with a great expression of terroir "truffles, damp earth and cocoa powder. All in a $12 wine that you've gotta love. I pair it with this simple roast chicken, inspired by Jacques Pepin's recipe, because it reminds me of a simple and delicious French country bistro meal.


V.O.S. adds: The Gamay grape flourishes on these steep, granite slopes. Many of the vineyards are terraced and the best sites have a southeastern exposure, with all harvesting done by hand. Beaujolais is just under 50 miles away, but a more different expression of the Gamay grape could not be found. Part of this difference is surely due to the fact that a different clone is used, the Gamay Romain, as well as the fact that the vinification is more traditional and less manipulated than at its famous neighbor. The wines of Maurice Lutz are rich and flavorful with that hint of damp earth and truffles that the best French country wines exhibit. These hand-crafted wines are created from just 12 acres of vineyards. His wines sell out quickly in France so he has never exported before. To drink this wine in America is a rare opportunity (and a pleasure!)


Rosemary Roast Chicken Serves 4

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped rosemary
Kosher salt
Ground black pepper
One 3 11/2 pound chicken, rinsed and patted dry with paper towels
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup water

Preheat the oven to 425°F. In a bowl combine olive oil, rosemary, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper and stir to combine. Gently loosen the skin covering the chicken breast. Rub some of the herb mixture under the skin so that it covers the breast meat. Rub the remaining mixture under the skin of the legs and thighs. Salt and pepper the chicken inside and out. Place the butter in a roasting pan and put the pan in the oven for about 30 seconds to melt the butter. Set the chicken in the roasting pan on its side and roast for 15 minutes. Turn it on its other side and roast 15 minutes longer. Turn the chicken on its back and roast until the skin is brown and crisp and the cavity juices run clear, 25 to 30 minutes. (The chicken will be cooked through when an instant-read thermometer inserted into the breast registers 160° and the thigh registers between 165° and 170° F). Transfer to a platter, loosely cover with foil, and let rest 10 minutes before serving with the pan juices.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Tue Aug 01, 2006 3:44 pm

Thanks Bob, learn something new every day!! I was thinking the Rhone area when I first read this posting?!! Lucky guy being on such friendly terms with Andrea..she did send me an email once though.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Ross » Tue Aug 01, 2006 4:02 pm

I like her a great deal, but have only met her once -- she led a great tasting of Australian wine, and we spent 15 minutes shooting the breeze afterwards.

You too can be friends -- just sign up for her Wine Club, Bob. :-)
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Ross » Wed Aug 02, 2006 1:10 am

This wine lasted beautifully overnight in the original bottle in a cold refrigerator. It smoothed out and the plummy tastes melded beautifully with mild tannins and firm acidity. Went great with a Hungarian stuffed cabbage and was quite nice on its own later.

I would seriously consider decanting this wine in future -- something I rarely do. 4*.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Jenise » Thu Aug 03, 2006 3:05 pm

Interesting and educational. I had no idea there was such a place as the Cote Roannaise or that any red grape besides pinot noir and cab franc were grown in the Loire Valley.

I'm surprised you mention that you rarely decant wines. Is that because you usually drink mature wines that don't need decanting, or do you open the bottles 24 hours in advance, say, so that the need for aggressive aeration is avoided?
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Ross » Thu Aug 03, 2006 6:10 pm

Same here on the education side. Andrea Robinson has taught me something with each of the wines she sent me, Jenise.

I never decant if I'm the major consumer -- if others are part of the group, I'll follow standard decanting rules.

But by personal preference, I enjoy spending time with wines, even two hours or more, to see how they change over time. It's amazing to me how different they can be at different periods -- closed and tight with glimpses of pleasure for an hour, then slowly opening to show wonderful complexity.

I've been with a couple of people who decanted almost everything -- one Bordeaux with a great deal of age on it was absolutely dead a couple of minutes after it was poured into the decanter and then sipped in a glass. But the aroma before it died was wonderful. I'ld rather wait and have all that happen in my glass.

One real problem -- restaurants often have wines that are too young, and in order to enjoy them, they really have to be decanted. I tend to order something that doesn't require that sort of decanting, but from time to time my hand is forced. :-)

And, I have no problem with anything that's thrown off -- I sort of enjoy seeing the residue in the glass.

All very much personal preference, Jenise, no messages here for anyone else.

Regards, Bob
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bruce K » Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:17 am

I had no idea there was such a place as the Cote Roannaise or that any red grape besides pinot noir and cab franc were grown in the Loire Valley.


My understanding is that Cote Roannaise, along with other small appellations such as Cotes du Forez and Cotes d'Auvergne, are located in the upper reaches of the Loire Valley, well to the southeast of Sancerre and even farther from the other Loire appellations. I don't have a map in front of me but I'm pretty sure that geographically, they're closer to Beaujolais, which might explain their use of gamay.

Actually, a lot of gamay is grown in the Touraine and produces some wonderful wine, IMHO, by a number of producers including Clos Roche Blanche, Thierry Puzelat, Henry Marrionette and Domaine Gibault. I find Touraine gamays to be less overtly fruity and much more minerally than most Beaujolais, which is actually to my liking. In addition, red wines from the appellation of Cheverny, which is in the Touraine, are a blend of pinot noir and gamay.

Other red grapes grown in the Loire include Cot (Malbec), Pineau d'Aunis, Grolleau, Abouriou and even a little Cabernet Sauvignon. The Loire's diversity is one of the reasons why the region is so fascinating for me, though admittedly many of the reds produced there are hard to find in the U.S.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bill Buitenhuys » Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:22 am

Good points, Bruce. CRB Touraine Cuvee Gamay is next on my gamay list for tonight.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Ross » Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:27 am

Very interesting, Bruce, thanks.

I thought Dressner/Louis was the king of the Loire knowledge, but you are opening up new possibilities.

I see that Domaine du Pavillon claims they use a different clone of Gamay than is used in Beaujolais.

Regards, Bob
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Jenise » Fri Aug 04, 2006 12:39 pm

Bruce, Bill, Bob: This discussion prompted me to look up the Cotes Roannaise in the Larousse Wine Encyclopaedia, and there's a map. Sancerre is in the upper middle of the area on this map called the Upper Loire. The three areas Buce mentioned, plus St. Pourcain, are about 200-250 klicks to the south and south east in a mountainous region. Of the four, Roannaises (yes, with a final 's') and Forez are AOC's while St. Pourcain and Cotes d'Auvergne are VDQS's. All four produce gamay for reds and whites are chardonnay, aligote and sauv blanc. Pinot noir is also grown in St. Pourcain. Beaujolais is just across the mountains to the east.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bruce K » Fri Aug 04, 2006 2:04 pm

I thought Dressner/Louis was the king of the Loire knowledge, but you are opening up new possibilities.


Thanks for the compliment, Bob, but while I may have a greater Loire obsession than the average wine drinker and, hence, a bit more knowledge, it pales not only next to the likes of Dressner but also to many people who post in this forum, such as Rahsaan.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay wine]

by Bob Ross » Fri Aug 04, 2006 5:49 pm

Jenise, Robinson has two interesting entries; note the variation between "Roannaise" and "Roannaises". My French is too weak to figure out which is "correct". When she uses "Roannaise" she uses "Côte"; when she uses "Roannaises", she uses "Côtes".

Roannaise, Côte

Hand-crafted, lightish reds and some rosés made chiefly from locally adapted Gamay grapes, called St-Romain à Jus Blanc here, using Beaujolais cellar techniques, usually semi-carbonic maceration. The south east-facing slopes of the upper Loire, on which vines are grown on a granitic base, are only one range of hills west of the Beaujolais region. Direct river (see rivers) and canal links with Paris gave the region's wines relative fame and popularity in the 19th century so that annual production was almost 800,000 hl/21.1 million gal at the beginning of the 20th century. Production was down to 4,000 hl by 1994 when appellation contrôlée status was won but in 1996 about 9,000 hl was produced. Wine quality is in the hands of more than a score of individual wine-makers (unlike Côtes du Forez to the south), egged on by the Troisgros family at their famous restaurant in the town of Roanne.


***

Forez, Côtes du

A range of hills between the upper reaches of the Loire and Lyons in eastern France give their name to light, vigorous red and rosé wines made, like Beaujolais, from the Gamay grape. The wines, designed for early drinking, may taste reminiscent of those of the Côtes Roannaises to the north. Both regions, part-granitic, have known greater glory. Both were awarded VDQS status in the mid 1950s. The more southerly of the pair is higher, has a slightly less dependable climate, and has taken an almost exclusively co-operative (see co-operatives) route. The Vignerons Foréziens co-operative is based in Boën-sur-Lignon and has won acclaim for its policy of developing quality through a series of different cuvées. About 200 ha/500 acres were cultivated in the late 1990s.


Isn't "St-Romain à Jus Blanc" a pretty name? There's a fun game of trying to find a Google search that will return only one hit; that name is a winning example if you ever decide to play the game:

http://www.wine-searcher.com/regions/cote+roannaise/1

Thanks for the additional research -- Andrea, Jancis, Jenise -- all educating an OF. :-)

Regards, Bob
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay w

by Otto » Fri Aug 04, 2006 6:59 pm

Bob Ross wrote:Jenise, Robinson has two interesting entries; note the variation between "Roannaise" and "Roannaises". My French is too weak to figure out which is "correct". When she uses "Roannaise" she uses "Côte"; when she uses "Roannaises", she uses "Côtes".


My French is very far from perfect (I've only studied one year of it), but I think Côtes is the plural form so it will have RoanniaiseS as that is the plural form of Roannaise. Côtes is also, if I understood anything, also a plural form.

-O-
I don't drink wine because of religious reasons ... only for other reasons.
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Re: WTN: Domaine du Pavillon Cote Roannaise 2004. [A Gamay w

by Jenise » Fri Aug 04, 2006 7:08 pm

Otto, my understanding too. I guess the next question is, what's the def of 'cotes' such that the plural form roannaises applies?

Hey, I've got an idea: FIELD TRIP!!!!
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov

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