La Pèira in Jeb Dunnuck’s The Rhone Report
While Montpellier may have lost against Olympique de Marseille in the Coupe de la Ligue final last week, we were somewhat consoled by the fact the La Pèira wines put in a good showing for the Herault in the latest issue of Jeb Dunnuck’s The Rhone Report – the quarterly newsletter covering the wines and grapes of the Rhône Valley and elsewhere.
The La Pèira 2007 was judged the top red of the Languedoc-Roussillion – alongside Gauby’s Muntada 2007 – in a field of fine players such as Grange de Peres, Clos Marie, Mas Jullien, Montcalmes, Clos de Truffiers, and L’Oustal Blanc and others.
More about Issue 7 of The Rhone Report and Jeb’s La Pèira notes below.
The Rhone Report: La Pèira notes
“this estate continues to produce world class wines that show not only plenty of distinctive character, but a level of polish and refinement that isn’t often found – from anywhere”
“Easily one of the top wines of the region (and I’ll gladly include all of the southern Rhône in that comparison)”
Located north of the Hérault (which is a good 60km off the Mediterranean), on the southern edge of the Massif Central, and in the town of Saint Saturnin de Lucian, this estate continues to produce world class wines that show not only plenty of distinctive character, but a level of polish and refinement that isn’t often found – from anywhere. While the region as a whole has warmer, longer summers, as well as cooler winters, it also has drastic daily temperature swings due its distance from the Sea. Website: www.la-peira.com Importer: Eric Solomon
La Pèira Terrasses du Larzac La Pèira Red 98
La Pèira Terrasses du Larzac Las Flors de La Pèira Red 93
La Pèira Terrasses du Larzac Obriers de La Pèira Red 91
2007 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac (France, Languedoc Roussillon, Languedoc, Terrasses du Larzac) $125
Utterly captivating and borderline perfection in a glass, the 2007 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac is the estate’s top cuvee and is a blend of 68% Syrah and 32% Grenache, from the Bois de Pauliau vineyard, that’s aged for 18 months in French oak. It displays a vivid purple color to go with intense, decadent aromas of sweet crème de cassis and blackberry styled fruits, smoked meats, exotic spice, violets, and perfectly integrated wood on the nose. While ripe and leaning towards the decadent end of the spectrum, the wine shows unbelievable purity, focus, and freshness as well as not a hint of heat, over-ripeness, or weight. Full bodied and lavishly textured on the palate, with the same lightness and elegance that’s promised by the nose, the wine shows perfect balance, a deep, concentrated mid-palate, perfectly ripe fruit, and a blockbuster finish that’s laced with loads of ultra-fine tannin. Few wines can pull off such a mix of ripeness, polish, and balance, and this one does it with style! I don‟t doubt that this will age gracefully, but given the utter seamlessness and polish displayed, don’t be afraid to drink this young. Easily one of the top wines of the region (and I’ll gladly include all of the southern Rhône in that comparison) and this is not to be missed! (98 pts.)
2007 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac Las Flors (France, Languedoc Roussillon, Languedoc, Terrasses du Larzac)
Richer and heavier than the top cuvee, the 2007 Las Flors, a blend of 37% Syrah, 47% Grenache, and 16% Mourvèdre that’s aged for 18 months in French oak, sports an inky, opaque color to go with full throttle aromatics of baked plums and cassis fruits, licorice, roast coffee, and charred earth. It improves over the evening with touches of garrigue, violets, and spice emerging, lending additional freshness and complexity to what would otherwise be a very dense, impenetrable wine. Full bodied on the palate and beautifully put together, with a palate staining, decadent texture, solid balance, and a bitter chocolate-laced, tannic finish, this is actually less approachable than the Les Terrasses du Larzac and needs cellaring. My guess is that this will benefit from 3-5 years in bottle, and then drink well for a decade afterwards. I may have liked this even more if I had not tasted it right next to the straight ’07 Les Terrasses du Larzac. (93 pts.)
2008 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac Les Obriers de La Pèira (France, Languedoc Roussillon, Languedoc, Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac)
Silky and perfumed, with an understated elegance about it that’s similar to a north Rhône Syrah, the 2008 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac Les Obriers de La Pèira is a barrel aged blend of 59% Cinsualt and 41% Carignan that’s all from the gravel and limestone soils of the Bellefeuille vineyard. It shows captivating aromatics of freshly snipped flowers, damp earth, iron, and mineral like notes that are supported by fresh raspberry and pit fruits. The wine follows suite on the palate and displays a medium bodied, energetic texture, beautiful integration of the acid, tannin, and fruit, and a clean, excellent finish. It’s not a powerhouse and shines for its balance, purity, and energy. While I would drink it over the coming 2-4 years, this could surprise and age well. Time will tell. (91 pts.)
The Rhone Report ISSUE #7
Jeb Dunnuck’s subscription-based The Rhone Report (around $60 year – $5 monthly) newsletter is published quarterly and dedicated to the wines of the Rhone and Rhone wines worldwide.
The latest issue focuses on the Languedoc Roussillon, Southern Rhône & Provence, Northern Rhône, Spain, and 1998 & 2001 Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
Jeb Dunnuck’s (pictured above) The Rhone Report website is here. Reviews and Images above © 2011 — therhonereport.com (unless otherwise credited.)