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Our January Wine of the Month is a crowd-pleasing Rhône blend that offers plenty of up-front fruit flavor in a full-bodied frame with oh-so-silky tannins. This is the kind of wine one can serve with confidence knowing everyone will enjoy it.

The 2020 Grande Reserve is a blend of 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah and 10% Mourvedre that will work wonders in just about any setting this time of year. The nose is loaded with ripe red berries and cherries, a touch of pepper spice, rose petal and bunches of violets. The palate reiterates the nose with plenty of fruits and spice, adding fine tannins and bright acidity to the mix. Flavors of raspberry, pomegranate and cherry easily rest atop layers of dusty earth and delicate spice.

Cellier des Princes is a co-op encompassing 189 winemakers and 580 hectares of vineyards that has operated in Châteauneuf-du-Pape since 1925. The group considers themselves protectors of tradition and make commitments to sustainable environmental development and high standards. In fact, they were involved in the creation of the first appelation (AOC) in France: Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

This wine comes from vineyards planted in clay and limestone with round pebbles on the surface. Total destemming, followed by 3-4 weeks of traditional maceration in concrete tanks. The wine is aged for 12 months in concrete tanks with partial oak treatment. The result is an aromatic, lushly textured and vibrant wine.

There’s something about the GSM blend, the Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre, the Rhône wine in general, that’s very user-friendly as well as food-friendly. Enjoy this delicious drinker solo or pair with hearty soups and stews, après ski burgers and brats, hard cheeses and game.
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