Roussanne is a difficult grape to grow and a tricky wine to make, but when it is good, it’s very good. Happily, Jerome Quiot and the folks at Château du Trignon know how to work with Roussanne and the Rhône’s other mercurial white grape varieties and they have turned in another superlative effort in the estate’s 2015 Château du Trignon Roussanne Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc. Ripe, juicy flavors, supreme purity, elegance, and balance characterize this outstanding effort which Wine Spectator awarded 90 points. Light, fresh floral flavors beguile the nose, seep almost surreptitiously into the flavor of the wine, and glide gleefully across the tongue before slipping down the throat with a flourish. This is not a wine for Chardonnay drinkers who beg for smoke and butter, but for those who appreciate the pure natural fruit flavors and crisp acidity of an extraordinary grape. In short, Château du Trignon’s 2015 Roussanne Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc is a wine without guile or pretense, and it makes a strong statement and an authentic case for itself. Enjoy this superlative white Rhône wine moderately chilled or simply cool (40°- 50° F), but as you like it.
Château du Trignon’s 2015 Roussanne Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc provides a wonderful accompaniment to seafood, salads, and white meats. This exceptional Roussanne offers charm and elegance in its floral flavors in addition to a crisp, racy finish to complement Coconut Shrimp, Jerk Tuna Tartare Wraps, and Chicken and Muenster Cheese Flatbreads. Vietnamese Spring Rolls with thin slices of shrimp, pork, and fennel pair nicely, too. A hearty salad of mixed organic greens, grilled chicken, cashews, and Mandarin orange slices offers a fine complement as well. And for most of us, a clean glass is all that is needed in the way of accompaniments with this wine. In a clean, thin glass the 2015 Château du Trignon Roussanne Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc will reveal its many charms and prove to be a fine aperitif. Bon appétit.
Château du Trignon has for over a century been one of the Southern Rhône Valley’s most respected wine estates. With considerable holdings in Gigondas, Rasteau, Sablet and other premier Côtes-du-Rhône locales, five successive generations of the Roux family firmly established Château du Trignon as a first rate purveyor of classic red Rhône wines. And, since its purchase in 2007 by the Quiot family of Domaine du Vieux Lazaret and Châteauneuf-du-Pape fame, Château du Trignon has set the bar even higher, moving from strength to strength with its red wines, while becoming equally adept at producing compelling white wines, most notably the estate’s three very limited bottlings of white Côtes-du-Rhône. Each is made from a single white varietal as 100% Marsanne, Roussanne or Viognier. This month’s selection features Château du Trignon’s 2015 Roussanne Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc, one of the Rhône Valley’s finest and rarest white wines.
Roussanne is a unique white grape variety that derives its name from the russet colored skin of its fully ripened clusters. Its home is the mostly red wine producing appellations of Crozes-Hermitage, Hermitage, and St. Joseph in the Northern Rhône Valley of France. In fact, Roussanne is the only white grape varietal other than Marsanne that is permitted in those premier appellations. Small amounts of Roussanne can also be found in white Châteauneuf-du-Pape and in a few special Côtes-du- Rhône vineyards in the Southern Rhône. Presently, small plantings of Roussanne exist in Australia and South Africa. There are approximately 200 acres of Roussanne under cultivation in California, too, making Roussanne one of the continent’s rarest grape varietals.
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