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Wine Review: Ortas Tradition Rasteau 2006

Wine Review: Ortas Tradition Rasteau 2006 ($16)

This wine journey begins in France. I don’t actually drink a lot of French wine, but I've made a summer resolution to explore more of it. After all, the French have been making wine for at least 2,500 years, so they must have a pretty good idea of what they're doing. And despite the prominence of high-priced premier crus, you can still find some good-value wines from France.

The Côtes du Rhône region, along the Rhone river in the south of the country, produces some beautiful medium-bodied, fruit-driven red wines, and the Rasteau village has a reputation for bottling some of the richest reds in the region, using the same grapes as the famous (and expensive) Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

Ortas Tradition Rasteau combines balance and strength. Cherries and violets jump out of the glass on the nose (I'm talking figuratively, here). On the palette, red berry flavours join complex notes of prunes and tobacco. The wine has a rustic edge to it, but the tannins and acids do a fine job of intermingling, resulting is a smooth, lip-smacking finish.

For $16, it’s a definite bargain.

Quaffability Rating: 88

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“Wine Review: Ortas Tradition Rasteau 2006”