Domaine Grand Nicolet Vielles Vignes Rasteau 2006
Cote du Rhone can really kill it, or it can be decidedly boring pepper stew. Rateau, however, a single village within the Cote du Rhone offers better quality wines, and when you can get them from a good vintage, a good producer, and at a price such as this wine they really shine through as some of the best value reds in the world.
The nose on this old vines grenache based cuvée has dusty, chocolate-infused blueberry driving the wine over a tiny edge of manure, which dissipated with air. The palate has superb fruit up front with tons of blueberry and strawberry. The mid-palate has a considerable tannic grip, but the finish is soft and smooth. The wine also maintains considerable freshness from the acidity. Heat and chalk fill out the mouth of this big-boned incredibly food friendly wine. An awesome value for the price.
$20 at Marquis