B-21 Top Recommendation
I've been showcasing top producers from Languedoc's specialized sub-zones for a few years now, so fans of these killer wines know well the delights of Pic St Loup. The latest sub district within France's Deep South to be elevated to appellation status, this all important zone is home to one of my personal, long-time favorites: Chateau de Lancyre. Historically, the original Chateau dates to the 1500s, built upon the ruins of a 12th century fort – Pic St Loup is loaded with France's vinous history. The Durand and Valentin families bought the estate in 1970. Immediately recognizing the importance of Syrah here, they renovated portions of the old buildings, planted several acres of Syrah and refurbishing the few parcels of very old vines that were still bearing fruit. Interestingly, when the appellation folks drew up plans for Pic St Loup, they decreed Syrah as the driving varietal; guess the Durand and Valentin folks knew what they were doing. Today, many consider this estate tops in the new AOC – including me – with their 2015 Clos des Combes – a 50/50 blend of very old vine Syrah and 25-30 year old vine Grenache – a dead ringer for top flight Hermitage or Cote Rotie. When's the last time you had a 5-star Cote Rotie for THIS price?!