Jeb Dunnuck 94
Cut from the same cloth, the 2015 Gigondas Racines offers darker fruits, as well as more minerality, yet is slightly closed and needs 2-3 years of bottle age. Garrigue, black cherries, currants, scorched earth, and licorice all flow to a full-bodied Gigondas that has ripe tannin and terrific length. It’s a classic beauty well worth your time and money.
Wine Spectator 92
Still youthfully tight, with singed alder and dried lavender notes framing a coiled core of cassis, damson plum and bitter cherry fruit. The long sanguine- and mineral-edged finish will need some time to unwind fully. Best from 2019 through 2027. 2,800 cases made.
Wine Advocate 91
I preferred the Domaine Les Pallieres 2015 Gigondas Les Racines, which comes from 75-year-old vines (80% Grenache) at lower elevation. There's a sassafras-like spice note to this wine, along with ripe cherries and hints of clove and allspice. Like the Terrasse de Diable, it's full-bodied and silky in texture, but the Racines seems to carry its alcohol better. Both of these Gigondas are matured exclusively in 60-hectoliter foudres, so there's no obvious oak influence.
Domaine Les PallieresView all from Domaine Les Pallieres
Domaine Les Pallières is undeniably one of the greatest, longest-running properties of the Southern Rhône--outside the village of Gigondas, woven into the foothills of the beautiful and brooding Dentelles de Montmirail. The domaine had been a continuously running farm within the same family since the fifteenth century! Les Pallières was once a famous domaine with wines of impeccable character, yet the property had slowly fallen into disrepair. Two great frosts of the twentieth century had killed off many of the olive and fruit trees, and both the winery and the vineyards were badly in need of repairs. By 1998, the Roux brothers wanted to make a change. With no future successors to take their place, they decided to sell.
The Brunier brothers, Daniel and Frédéric, of the famed Vieux Télégraphe in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, were rising stars in the Southern Rhône at the time, having distinguished themselves time and time again with world class wines. A casual discussion over lunch at Chez Panisse between Daniel and Kermit Lynch, the Brunier's longtime American importer, spontaneously turned into a game plan to revive the faded jewel--Les Pallières. Though the competition to buy the domaine was fierce with very reputable names in the mix, the Roux brothers finally decided to sell to the Bruniers and Kermit. After decades of neglect, Pallières' renaissance had begun.