Dom Palon Gigondas 20

Article number: 009136
Availability: In stock
Delivery time: Same day Pickup

I love the wine business, and one of the best parts of my job is getting to meet and source wines from amazing farmers and winemakers worldwide. I've forged some fantastic relationships with these folks, and each year, I eagerly await the release of their new vintages.    


This week's Local-Insider Deal is very special to me. It features one of the first wines I personally sourced and made available in North Carolina exclusively for AWM customers. I sourced this wine thanks to the help of a friend who is a wine broker and lives in the South of France. It's her job to match a winemaker with a wine buyer's specific requirements.


My requirements are relatively simple:

-- The winemaker is also the farmer who grows the grapes

-- The farming and winemaking methodology is at minimum sustainable, preferably organic, and a bonus if biodynamic

-- The property is family-owned or is a coop owned by a group of local families

-- The property is quality-oriented, delivering consistent and sustained quality from vintage to vintage


Domaine Palon far exceeds my list of requirements!


For many years, Gigondas was one of the ultimate insider secrets of the Rhône Valley. Travelers to the region instantly fell in love with the quaint, picturesque village and had the pleasure of discovering stunning wines with a lineage of quality dating back to Roman times. However, wine from this previously under-priced and under-rated region has been widely discovered in recent years. Currently, it sports a price tag similar to most bottles of Châteauneuf-du-Pape.


The 1200 hectares of vineyards in Gigondas are situated just east of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, in the shadow of the rugged Dentelles de Montmirail mountains. The wines in Gigondas are remarkably similar to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, featuring the same silky, plummy dark red fruit, peppery notes, and classic Rhône Valley structure that allows for immediate enjoyment and cellaring potential. Grenache is king here, with 80% required in the blend and a minimum of 15% Syrah and/or Mourvèdre.


The Palon family has been growing grapes in Gigondas for more than 100 years. The estate was founded by Valérie and Léopold Palon and was most recently run by their great-grandson, Sébastien Palon. His grandfather, Jean Palon, was the co-founder of the Gigondas Co-operative Wine Cellars and a member of its governing board for two decades, passing the title to Sébastien's father, Jean-Pierre Palon.


Jean Pierre continued to run the Co-op until 2001, and in 2003, his son Sébastien decided he would no longer sell the family's grapes to the Co-op. Sébastien created his own winery, becoming a "Propriétaire Récoltant" — an independent winegrower and producer.


At the start of 2019, my broker friend notified me that the Palon family had put their property up for sale. I always dread receiving this call, which often foreshadows the end of the relationship with the vigneron. Happily, in this case, my broker friend quickly pointed out that the Deltin family, owners of the venerable Château Malijay, were to become the new owners. I was immediately relieved, knowing the property would continue the Palon family's firm focus on quality and integrity.


The 2020 Palon Gigondas is a blend of 80% Grenache, 15% Syrah, and 5% Mourvèdre grown on a mixture of clay and calcaire soils topped with small, polished riverbed stones. The Grenache is vinified and aged in stainless steel, while the Mourvèdre and Syrah were aged in large wooden foudré.


In your glass, you're treated to an intoxicating nose of sappy dark red fruits and spice, leading to a powerful palate of dark berries brimming with loads of spice, hints of olive tapenade, and classic notes of garrigue. While it's ideally suited for immediate enjoyment, if you can resist pulling the cork for a year or two, it will handsomely reward the extra time in bottle.


Pair this delicious Gigondas GSM with your favorite summer grilling adventures — it will sing with grilled beef and lamb.


Vinous Media: 92 Points

"Deep, vivid magenta. Expressive red/dark berry and floral scents are sharpened by suggestions of cracked pepper and smoky minerals. Taut and appealingly sweet on the palate, offering focused black raspberry, cherry liqueur, and allspice flavors that deepen as the wine opens up. Youthful and leaning on primary fruit, finishing with solid punch and supple, harmonious tannins. Raised in oak foudres."

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