2016 Domaine de l'Idylle Savoie Arbin Mondeuse
In 1840, Francois Tiollier bought this property planted with vines and fruit trees. He built the house and named this magnificent place: the Domaine de l'Idylle. Albert Tiollier won his first wine competition in 1920. Henriette and André Tollier, were the first to put their wine in bottles in the valley, and were pioneers of the validation of authentic grape varieties. In 1975, Philippe followed by François Tiollier settled on the estate and decided to specialize in wine and stopped the other fruit production. In 2011, Sylvain Tiollier, the next generation arrived, giving it a new breath, bringing a bit of modernity while preserving the traditions of these centuries-old wines.
This wine brings us to Alpine territory, and it's vibrant cool-climate reds. Hailing from Savoie, a small region in the foothills of the French Alps, it’s made from 100% Mondeuse [say: mawn-DOOZE], a thick-skinned red grape native to the crags and cliffs of this mountainous region. It’s a grape that can show big, burly tannins, but this particular producer chooses to utilize a method known as carbonic maceration to help keep those grippy textures in check. Most famously used in the production of wines from Beaujolais, carbonic maceration eschews the grape press, instead allowing the fruit to crush under its own weight. Tannin tends to live in the skin of the grape, so the gentler juice extraction process releases less tannin into the wine, promoting the expression of fruit notes instead.
The parent of syrah, the mondeuse vine gives spicy wines leading to notes of violets. This red wine variety is emblematic of Savoie.
A beautiful, ruby color in the glass, the nose first shows notes of blue and purple fruits—blueberry, blackberry, plum skin. After a minute or two, a nuanced, herbal complexity begins to show, and sandalwood, anise seed, and floral notes take hold. The tannin is present but integrated. Wet stone minerality creates a backbone for the complex fruit and herbal notes.
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Bottles are in perfect condition.