Founded 185 years ago in the heart of the northern Côtes du Rhône, Delas Freres today crafts world class wines from both northern and southern Rhône.
Tending the steep sloping vineyards, which total some 30 hectares of vines, the team adapt their growing practices to each plot of vines to let the terroir of the Rhône shine through in the wines.
Crafted by winemaker Jacques Grange (who is originally from Burgundy), the wines from Delas Freres epitomise finesse and elegance. Recent vintages from the vineyards of Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Côte Rôtie, Condrieu, Côtes-du-Rhône and Côtes-du-Ventoux have bee lauded in the press for their intensity of flavour and excellent value.
The Côtes-du-Rhône Saint-Esprit Blanc consists of a blend of grenache blanc, clairette, bourboulenc and viognier varietals from the Right Bank vineyards of the Southern Rhône Valley. The Grenache adds structure to the wine while the Clairette and Bourboulenc contribute to its fine aromatic quality.
The climate is Mediterranean and bears the stamp of the “mistral” wind. This strong wind results from a difference in atmospheric pressures between the northern and southern parts of the Rhône valley. It is beneficial to the vine’s growth. The region is also marked by seasonal rains, and hot, exceptionally sunny weather in the summer months.
Vinified through the traditional method, this Côtes-du-Rhône shows the strength of the terroir. The grapes are harvested at the peak of their maturity and acidity balance. After pressing and cold settling for a period of 24 hours, the musts are racked and fermented in stainless steel tanks at a maximum temperature of 64°F. Malolactic fermentation is avoided to preserve natural balance and freshness in the wine and to enhance its finesse. The blend is then stored in stainless steel tanks until bottling. Prior to the bottling, the wine is lightly fined and filtered to ensure perfect stability.
Good rainfall during the winter helped build up water reserves, which was much needed as temperatures warmed up and there was hardly any rainfall from Spring until mid-June. A devastating hailstorm hit Crozes-Hermitage, and to lesser extent parts of St Joseph, on June 15th – the like of which had not been seen since 1952. July and August continued to be hot, with a little rain which helped to sustain the vines to the end of vintage, with a warm and sunny September. By harvest time, grape health was immaculate and quantities were normal to good (except in Crozes which was impacted by a hailstorm reducing quantities up to 35%). The berries picked were small and concentrated with thick skins but ripe tannins, resulting in glorious wines with aromatic perfume and wonderful fruit and silky texture.
The Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc has a golden straw hue with green tinges. The main aromas are reminiscent of white flowers and yellow fruit, enhanced by touches of exotic and citrus fruit. On the palate, the wine is alert, seductively suave and fresh.
This wine pairs well with grilled fish, waterfowl or enjoyed as an aperitif.
November 19, 2020, Jeb Dunnuck
“Pretty honeysuckle, citrus, and orange blossom notes emerge from the 2019 Côtes Du Rhône Saint-Esprit Blanc, a juicy, medium-bodied, nicely balanced white that represents a good value. It’s going to keep for a year or two.”
Wine & Spirits
88 POINTS, BEST BUY
“Creamy with savory marzipan flavors, this is a textural pleasure, with enough citrusy acidity to perk up a pan-fried fish.”
Rhone Valley, France