Les Halos de Jupiter Costières de Nîmes

2013 Les Halos de Jupiter Costières de Nîmes, Rhône Valley, France (Alcohol 14.5%) LCBO Vintages $17.95

I often feel that the Costières de Nîmes AOP is one of the more underrated regions in all of France. Often mistakenly thought of as being part of the Languedoc, these 4,000 hectares of vineyards between the city of Nîmes and the Rhône Valley delta produce decidedly Rhône wines. This delightful bottling, courtesy of larger-than-life consultant Winemaker Philippe Cambie, is a thrilling example of just what this area is capable of.

For $17.95 you are getting quite a lot of extremely well-crafted juice. Served just a little chilled, this 70 Grenache/30% Syrah wine gives you surprisingly lively aromatics of anise, fresh just-crushed black hedgerow fruits, cracked black pepper, and that elusive and seductive garrigue scrubland. On the palate the wine is amazingly fresh and forward with some great acidity supporting all that ripe dark fruit (probably something to do with the regions cooling sea breezes during the hot summer months).

Medium-bodied and much more elegantly textured than one would expect at this particular price point, this is a great red wine for the summer months. There’s quite a bit in the LCBO system, so hopefully stocks will last while our warmer weather does.

Four apples (out of a potential five)

Jamie Drummond

Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food Revolution… And this one is most enjoyable.