Domaine Saint Laurent
2004 Mas Des Amphorelles
Red Blend •Chateauneuf-du-Pape AOC
France: Rhône Valley
What We Say
If you are visiting us for the first time, Welcome! The Wine Spies feature one exceptional wine each day – and we only bring you wines that we ourselves seek out and love. Always, the wines are great. Sometimes greater than great, as is the case with today’s wine from Domaine Saint Laurent.
Rare Wine Alert:
Today’s wine from Domaine Saint Laurent is extremely rare and exclusive and is only available in the United States to retail customers through The Wine Spies. If you are a fan of Chateauneuf-du-Pape you should be sure to pick up a few bottles and if you haven’t tried a Chateauneuf-du-Pape, this is an excellent example of one of France’s most famous wines.
Mission Codename: The Pope’s New Castle… I Mean Wine
Operative: Agent White
Objective: Discover a unique Chateauneuf-du-Pape only available for The Wine Spies
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Domaine Saint Laurent
Wine Subject: 2004 Mas Des Amphorelles Chateauneuf-du-Pape
Winemaker: Robert Henri Sinard
Chateauneuf-du-Pape is one of the most unique and loved wines of the Southern Rhone. Its location is just south of the town of Orange and north of Avignon. The requirements of the AOC are somewhat loose compared to other AOCs and thus, Chateauneuf-du-Pape (CDP) can be made with a wide range of up to 13 grapes including Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, Picpoul, Terret Noir, Cinsault, Roussanne and several other grapes. The process of this unique blend is called encepagement. While most CDP wines use Grenache as the primary grape, newer vintages are leaning more to Syrah and Mourvedre. The 2004 Mas Des Amphorelles Chateauneuf-du-Pape, given its Grenache base, is considered more traditional in its blend.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Dark garnet red with brick edges and a springy surface texture that is luminescent and excellent clarity.
Smell – Intense scents of blackberry, stone-fruit, dark cherry, medium oak and toasted cedar with a hint of earthiness.
Feel – Dry and chewy with a firm structure and full-bodied mouth feel.
Taste – Excellent flavors of dark fruit, blackberries (but the fruit doesn’t dominate) with layers of toasted oak and cedar and a slight hint of exotic spice.
Finish – This wine finishes long, rich and smooth as its layers of flavor are exposed.
Conclusion – This wine is extremely well balanced and lives up to its traditional characteristics. It is full-bodied, rich, with great fruit and spice. Given its structure, this wine is the kind of wine that inspires conversation and lends itself to both a great meal as well as on its own.
Avignon, France… February 15, 2008…
Agent White reporting to HQ…
Arrived in in Chateauneuf-du-Pape late last night after surveillance of Domaine Saint Laurent. Agent Baco’s intel reports proved accurate. Robert Henri Sinard making among the best traditional CDP wines in region.
Local assets report that Robert Henri’s son will be taking over the family business and continue the family tradition of winemaker.
Follow up action required. Have samples in possession. Must make this wine available to United States operatives ASAP. Wine is currently only available in France.
Agent White Out…
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of the Chateauneuf-du-Pape AOC can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
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Ruby red color with purple reflections. Elegant and fruity nose with a touch of blackcurrant, blackberry and leather.
In the mouth it has body, but remains supple however, with tannins dominated by red berries: blackcurrant, raspberry, blackberry, and a touch of spice at the end of the tasting.
Food Pairing: This wine will be appreciated with grilled meat, such as beef.
Harvest is done by hand, followed by rigorous sorting out of the grapes, destalking, three weeks of fermentation on the skins in stainless steel vats and pressing.
About The Winery:
Situated mid-way between Avignon and Orange, the domain stretches on the hills of the Provence area. The strong winds (mistral) and exceptional sunshine characterize the Mediterranean climate of the area.
The Saint Laurent domain has been the property of the Sinard family for five generations. Since 1976 Robert Henri Sinard has taken over and continues the family tradition. With his son, Laurent, they do so by cultivating the vineyards without using weed-killers. They grow Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre for the reds and Clairette, Roussane for the whites.
Domaine Saint-Laurent belongs to the Sinard family, who comes from a very old rural stock settled in Courthézon in Provence. Up to now, five generations of vine growers have followed.
The founder of the vineyard was François Sinard. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he decided to get more involved in the vine and wine activity, although mixed farming was more common at that time.
He planted several acres of vine plants and built tanks. This choice of devoting himself to this only activity made him famous even outside the commune. He provided the archbishopric of Avignon with white Châteauneuf du Pape for Communion wine.
He transmitted a fully dynamic work instrument to the following generations: Marius, Robert-Marius, Robert-Henry and his son Laurent.
They have, in their own way, enlarged and modelled the family estate. Since 1976, Robert-Henry Sinard has taken up the torch and has continued the family task.
Varietals: 90% Grenache and 10 % Syrah
Alcohol By Volume: 13%
Aging: In vats and oak barrels (25%)
Serve: Ideal at 63 degrees F.