Consolation is a range of wines created by Andy Cook and Philippe Gard, a selection of single vineyards and varietals aimed at reflecting the best of each vintage, and the change from year to year on the estates of Coume del Mas and Mas Cristine.
Wild boars that live in the hilly wilderness around Banyuls and Collioure in the extreme South of France, simply loved to munch on the crop of this Syrah vineyard surrounded by cypress trees and cork oaks. Owners have now built an electric fence to protect the tasty grapes, and pick more of a healthier Syrah.
After fermentation in tank at 30C with gentle and aerated pumpovers, the wine was aged in 400-litre oak casks (1-year-old ones) for about one year.
This Southern France Syrah comes in an intense dark red color, nearly black to the core, bright red to the rim. Not your utter inky Syrah, like some Australian Shiraz can be, but still looking mysterious and deep.
The nose on the other hand, is pretty lively and talkative, extrovert it seems.
Yes, you first get a burst of the typical Syrah-like black pepper aromas, somewhat more like white pepper here as it’s so spicy. Still, it’s somewhat light and lively. Cherry jam and fresh raspberry provide a vibrant fruity side to the aromatic profile too.
Some leather, a little tar at opening the bottle, which dissipates fairly quickly, and salivating vanilla and caramel notes complement what can be described as an extrovert and tempting, charming, ‘sexy’ perhaps is the word I’m looking for here, of a nose.
The palate confirms this impression. This wine is VERY SEXY!
It is soft and well rounded, with a suave oily texture and delicate super-silky tannins. It’s like a beautiful woman in a red silk dress if I dared the comparison. But a sophisticated one at that, one you enjoy talking to and learning from…
The wine delivers plenty of rich blackberry liqueur notes, combined with the tasting sensation that would give a fresh blueberry juice. It’s ripe and almost jammy, but with a definite element of freshness in there too. Add some floral notes of violet, keeping the whole zesty and pungent.
It is dry but the wealth of ripe fruity characters, combined with such well-integrated and dark-toasted oak notes of toffee, honeyed hazelnut, and chocolate, that it feels opulent and delicious like a sweet red berry fruit, without really feeling sweet.
Long and warming finish, layered too. ‘Comforting’ is the best way to describe it, mixing toasted nuts and dark chocolate, coffee and blackberry liqueur, with vanilla and caramel.
A Syrah wine that is full of charms and tasty temptations. It offers the typicity we expect from the grape variety, richness of fruity flavors, liqueur-like blackberry and cherry notes, combined with a lifted liveness from elegant peppery notes.
It adds the smoothest texture you’re probably ever going to get out of a Syrah. A silky-smooth palate sensation as well as plenty of depth and yumminess from dark-roasted oaky notes. The latter though never feel intrusive, but complement and layer the wine wit more complexity.
An utterly charming wine, sweet and savory with a good acidity, concentrated, long and complex, and a fascinating personality I enjoyed discovering more and more at every sip. Always a good sign, especially within such a young wine.