Profile: Domaine Saint Gayan

[ Southern Rhone – France ]

Reviews & Tasting Notes

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When it comes to the wines of France’s southern Rhone, Domaine Saint Gayan has nailed it: incredible natural beauty; a friendly and unpretentious family of hands-on vignerons; generous wines, gentle on the attack, but with surprising depth, concentration and complexity behind; all at eminently reasonable prices!

Between the amazing palette of vineyards across 5 southern Rhone communes (Gigondas, Sablet, Seguret, Rasteau and Chateauneuf-du-Pape), Domaine Saint Gayan farms some of the most celebrated and privileged terroirs anywhere in France’s southern Rhone. Methods employed here at Domaine Saint Gayan are amongst the most traditional and classic you can find anywhere, resulting in what might be best described as “slow wine”.

New vintages from Domaine Saint Gayan are never rushed to commercial release, enjoying as much as 12-18 months more time to integrate in tank, barrel and bottle vs. neighbouring producers. Combine this extended aging with expensive and quality minded commitments like hand-harvesting, no destemming, fermentation in cement vats (rather than steel tanks), very light crushing and the extremely limited and careful use of new oak barrels and the result is a collection of seriously delicious and structured old-school wines designed to age and evolve gracefully over time.

Here at Domaine Saint Gayan, Grenache is the basis of all the red cuvees across all of the various communes, representing more than 60% of the Cotes-du-Rhone and Rasteau bottlings, and between 80% and 88% of the Gigondas and Chateauneuf-du-Pape production, respectively.

The lone white produced by Domaine Saint Gayan, from vineyards in Sablet, is comprised of 40% Viognier, 30% Bourboulenc, 15% Grenache Blanc and 15% Clairette – a composition mindful of and similar to many of the finest white wines produced in the neighbouring village of Chateauneuf-du-Pape which sell for double (if not triple) the price of this delicious white wine.