Château d'Or et de Gueules

robert parker notes Nove 2011

Robert Parker Nov 2011, Issue n°

Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2008 La Bolida Costieres de Nimes 91
Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2009 La Bolida Costieres de Nimes 91-93

Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2009 Castelnou Costieres de Nimes 90
Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2010 Castelnou Costieres de Nimes 90-92

Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2009 Trassegum Costieres de Nimes 90
Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2010 Trassegum Costieres de Nimes 90-92

Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2009 Qu’Es Aquo Costieres de Nimes 89+
Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2010 Qu’Es Aquo Costieres de Nimes 90-92

Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2010 Costieres de Nimes les Cimels Rosé 89
Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2008 Les Cimels Costieres de Nimes Red 87
Chateau d’Or et de Gueules 2009 Les Cimels Costieres de Nimes Red 88

Proprietor Diane de Puymorin turns out these distinctive wines from Costieres de Nimes, which are all different blends that carry Provencal names nearly impossible for Americans to pronounce. But don’t let that stop you from trying these wines, as they all have loads of character. This is a relatively large estate of nearly 200 acres in the Costieres de Nimes.

The 2009 La Bolida (100% Mourvedre from 100+ year old vines that were cropped at a ridiculously low 10-15 hectoliters per hectare) exhibits a dense purple color along with abundant notes of blueberries, fresh mushrooms, tree bark, bouquet garni, meat juices and earth. This full-bodied dense 2009 tastes more like a Bandol than a Costieres de Nimes. Consume it over the next decade. (1 star)

Also outstanding, the more evolved 2008 La Bolida offers up aromas of damp earth, truffles, fresh mushrooms, blue and black fruits and a meaty character. Complex aromatically, with full-bodied power as well as good structure and intensity, it should drink nicely for 7-8 years. (1 star)

The 2009 Castelnou (80% Grenache and 20% Mourvedre) reveals a slightly rustic edge, but once past the jagged tannins and its burly style, the wine exhibits good cherry and loamy soil notes, medium body and sweet glycerin that provides texture and elegance. I don’t think it will improve in the bottle, so consume it over the next 4-5 years.

Made from an identical blend, the 2010 Castelnou displays seamlessly integrated acidity, tannin and alcohol in its densely colored, rich, full-bodied personality. With copious quantities of kirsch and black currant fruit intermixed with lavender and licorice, this pure, ripe, velvety textured, full-bodied 2010 should drink well for 7-8 years.
A cuvee of Syrah and old-vine Mourvedre (80 to 90 years old) and just as old Carignan, the 2009 Trassegum is an opaque ruby/purple color and displays plenty of blueberry liqueur intermixed with some lavender, porcini mushrooms, forest floor notes and some Provencal herbs. It is dense, rich, concentrated and very Provencal, but also strikingly endearing thanks to its sweet tannins.

The 2010 Trassegum, showed more lead pencil shavings and pen ink, but again had the earthy, peppery, lavender and spice box notes that typify the region. Loads of black cherry and black currants make an appearance in this rich, full-bodied wine, which should prove to be as good as the 2009.

The proprietress’ cuvee of old-vine Carignan is called Qu’es A Quo. The 2009, which I reviewed last year, is still showing very well, although it is starting to close down ever so slightly. Lots of dusty, earthy loamy soil notes intermixed with some jagged tannins this year are nicely balanced out by some sweet black fruits, garrigue and spice box. Given the fact that it’s Carignan, I don’t know whether this wine is just starting to dry out ever so slightly or it is just going through an adolescent period.

The 2010 Qu’es A Quo displays notes of mountain laurel intermixed with lavender, damp earth, truffles, black currants and sweet cherries. The tannins are slightly rustic as well, but the wine possesses a lot of power. Both of these are masculine, ruggedly constructed wines that are authentic and distinctive. I would still opt to drink them in their exuberant youth, over the next 4-5 years

This time she presented a few more vintages, including her 2010 Les Cimels Rose (50% Cinsault, 40% Mourvedre and 10% Syrah), one of the best roses I tasted in a very strong vintage for these wines. Dry, crisp and austere, with notes of strawberries, minerals, pink grapefruit and loads of fruit, this is a delicious, surprisingly full-throttle rose to drink over the next year.

The 2008 Les Cimels Red, a blend of 40% Syrah, 40% Carignan and the rest Grenache, showed very well, with dusty, loamy earthy notes intermixed with licorice, garrigue, black cherry and a bit of spice. It is medium-bodied and best drunk over the next 2-3 years.

Slightly bigger, richer, and more intense, the 2009 Les Cimels is the classic Provencal concoction of tobacco leaf, lavender, licorice, bouquet garni and sweet and sour cherries intermixed with some darker currants. Medium to full-bodied, with delicious purity and lively texture, it should be drunk over the next 2-3 years.