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Old World, Old Vine Mourvèdre

It's a virtual red wine hug ...

Here at TWH, we are so happy and proud to have been working together with Diane de Puymorin and Mathieu Chatain of d'Or et de Gueules for over 20 years! Diane makes several cuvées that outdrink their respective price points, though none are as collectible and prestigious as her La Bolida. Made from 10% Syrah and the rest Mourvèdre sourced from vines over 90 years old, the La Bolida is a bold, robust red that drinks well in its youth, yet it also rewards those who stash a few bottles away for posterity.

We love the story. After having purchased La Petite Cassagne and renaming it in 1998, Diane was strongly advised to rip up her 50+ year old Carignan vines. She eschewed this advise claiming that she would make some delicious, complex red wines from those old vines. Apparently, no one said anything about her then 60 year old Mourvèdre vines. It's a late-ripening grape variety that only thrives in locales with long, warm growing seasons - like the southern Rhône Valley's Costières de Nîmes. Her winemaking prowess has not gone unnoticed, as she regularly receives praise from writers and publications. La Bolida has a track record of receiving the most praise, with 90+ point scores from virtually every writer/reviewer who tastes it. One of the big boys even said La Bolida tastes like a "top notch Bandol." The 2017 received 92 points from The Wine Enthusiast.

It's classic Mourvèdre -  it shows intense aromas of plums and blue fruits, black tea, fine leather, bitter chocolate, and smoked meats. The palate is marked by intense, expressive fruit, spice, and smoky meats, which give way to nuances like forest floor and black tea. On the finish, the entire package wraps up brightly and harmoniously with a satin-like kiss. Wines with this kind of story and pedigree usually sell for a much higher price than $32 (case price)! Much higher.

It was upon the advice of a former colleague here that I had the foresight to build a mini-vertical of La Bolida back in my early days at TWH. Sadly, they are no more, the last one I saved was the 2004 and it was opened at a holiday dinner with friends in 2018. I opened several other bottles that night, as it was a rather large party, and though all were enjoyed, the La Bolida was the one almost everyone who tasted it asked about. One friend of mine, who rarely talks to me about wine, even asked after she tasted it, "Pete! How do I get one of these?" There is no short answer to that, but if you want to have a wine that's super cool, a bit off the beaten path, that will deliver big time in 5-15 years, you now have an opportunity to acquire a bottle or twelve. No regrets. - Peter Zavialoff

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