Domaine: The secret to winemaker Nicolas Haeni’s success comes down to one thing: elevation. The Malmont vineyards are perched high in the hills above Séguret, where cooler air and slower ripening grapes are the key to balance. As the rest of the Southern Rhône struggles to keep their reds below 15% alcohol, the Malmont cuvées boast exquisite and enviable freshness.
Appellation: Today’s wine is classified as a Côtes du Rhône, but the vines are in Séguret. Winemaking here dates back to 611, and the style is typically rich, rugged and well priced. They’re great value alternatives to their famous neighbor Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
Wine: The 2017 Malmont Côtes du Rhône provides all the delicious, dark complexity of a southern Rhône red, with none of the heaviness. The nose shows raspberry, blackberry, and lavender. The mouth is perfectly balanced: rich dark fruit, excellent freshness, a mouthfilling attack and a clean finish.
Pairing: This is a great grilling red — burgers, sausages, even a pulled pork sandwich. But take a bottle out to your front stoop (a bit cool) on a summer afternoon, and you won’t need much else.
Malmont Côtes du Rhône 2017
bottle price: $24
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