Produced by Domaine du Coulet – Matthieu Barret, the 2009 vintage of Les Terrasses du Serre Cornas is in typically Northern Rhône fashion made entirely of Syrah. This varietal likes the sun so finds itself at its northernmost limit for successful ripening in this French wine region. To boggle the mind further with geography, Domaine du Coulet – Matthieu Barret is located in the Cornas appellation which is at the southernmost tip of the Northern Rhône. The climatic conditions of this north-south aspect result in some of the fullest bodied, most highly acidic reds in the region. Such a combination is irresistible – and all courtesy of nature!
Matthieu takes this collaboration with nature a few steps further in the making of his wines. Admiring biodynamic methods, he goes for the minimalist approach, leaving the granite-rich soil of his vineyards to feed the fruit and allowing the grapes to express their essence in the winery with as little human touch as possible. Matthieu is convinced that nature makes the best wines and proudly describes his winemaking as “flexible”, giving room for the grapes to express the variations in terroir and vintage. He also sends harvested fruit to the tank with gentle gravity flow to limit any damage and later stages of production like pressing and punching are kept to a minimum so as the preserve the finesse of the grapes.
Tasting Notes of Les Terrasses du Serre Cornas 2009
Deep purple hue which borders on opaque with a touch of violet at the rim.
The nose is decisive yet elegant with forward black fruits mingled with violet and hints of animal notes. I also picked up an enticing tarry tone and a bit of tapenade.
The enticing palette of aromas on the nose takes full command in the mouth with a penetrating core of bright black fruit shining steadily from the first sip to the last note of the lingering finish. Glimmers of peppery cassis, powdery violets, and even iron make their presence known against a glow of coffee, cocoa, and savory barnyard while silky, firm tannins frame it all with a gentle grip. Rounded with persistent waves of fruit, medium-bodied with balanced acidity, the finish is long and one to savor.
Les Terrasses du Serre Cornas is a complex wine all the more delectable for its strong rustic character. This effortless blend of finesse and earthiness is unique to Cornas Syrahs and a reflection of the domaine’s winemaking techniques.
Go for dishes with bold yet refined flavor when pairing with Les Terrasses du Serre Cornas. Enhance the spice in the wine with herby beef stew or seasoned grilled lamb. For vegetarians, this Syrah goes like a dream with French onion soup and eggplant dishes.
The blend of tannins, acidity, and body make Les Terrasses du Serre Cornas 2009 gluggable now, but it is reaching the final stages of bottle aging. If you can resist it for another couple of years, its expression will end on a perfect note.