French Red Rhone Wine, Domaine François Merlin 2010 Côte-Rôtie
  • French Red Rhone Wine, Domaine François Merlin 2010 Côte-Rôtie
  • French Red Rhone Wine, Domaine François Merlin 2010 Côte-Rôtie

Domaine François Merlin
2010 Côte-Rôtie

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Originating from the Cognet lieux-dit, this Syrah is a robust yet elegant Côte Rôtie. The 2010 vintage is considered one of the best vintages in Côte-Rôtie since the legendary vintage of 1978.

  • It’s old-fashioned to compare wine to women, but this extraordinarily delicious wine reminded me of a beauty I once knew who had done years of aikido—mesmerizing but with an aura of authority stemming from her long training. The 2010 François Merlin Côte-Rôtie is a similarly quiet powerhouse in a beautifully elegant wrapper. Deep purple, redolent of violets and perfumed with wood, peaches, toast, cinnamon buns, and an undercurrent of iodine seemingly wafting in from the ocean. Vibrant, powerful, and youthful yet surprisingly delicate with fine-grained tannins masking a deep core of intense, layered fruit. Seductive and delicious already, but likely to improve for another decade or more.

    Food pairing: Steak with black pepper, olives, or shiitake or porcini mushrooms; venison; duck; other game or fowl—pigeon, perhaps?; terrine; grilled eggplant; lamb; veal chops with morels

  • Decant this juicy, gamey Syrah to enjoy it at its best. Licorice, black cherry pie filling and smoked meat are the dominant flavors on the palate. Still a bit reserved, but likely to become richer and more elegant with a few years of cellar aging (through around 2017).

    Food pairing: Bacon wrapped dates

The Creator of This Wine

Domaine François Merlin

Domaine François Merlin

Heir not to a winemaker but to a chemical engineer, François Merlin studied agriculture and learned the work of the vines in the vineyards of René Rostaing. He planted his first vineyard -- in Condrieu -- in 1987, started making his own wines in 1999, and quickly became one of the “top names” in Condrieu (according to Rhône expert Livingstone-Learmonth). His son Laurent joined him in 2013.

Producer:Domaine François Merlin
Bottle size:750ml
Flavors:Dark fruit, Spice, Earth