TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

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Robert.A.Jr.
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TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#1 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » March 9th, 2012, 4:50 pm

So I've been sampling a few California syrahs lately. Lagier Meredith. Halcon. Bedrock. Etc. All very nice, especially the LM. Probably the best Cali syrah I have had. The 2007.

And then I pop a 2009 Gonon St. Joseph. Yea, too young. Yea, no reason other than it arrived today and suited my fancy. Plus, I was pissed at my dog for breaking into wet dog food and staining the master bedroom carpet. Wife comes back tomorrow from Vail and is gonna be pissed. House is a mess anyway. I need to get a bit numb tonight. Gonon is on the counter. Popped. Poured. I'm thirsty . . . .

Intensely dark. Gamey aromas. Bête sauvage. Just a nice touch of funky. Black fruits with some olive and pepper. I could sniff this nose all night.

Grilled meat, saline, iodine, iron and some rust. Black fruits, lots of black, some tanginess.

This is a powerful syrah. Large scale on the palate. Still wound up and needs some time to uncoil. Firm, gritty tannins. Crisp acidity.

Starting to develop some creaminess. I look forward to enjoying this wine all night.

This is my definition of textbook, phenomenal Northern Rhone syrah.

If ya got 'em, let 'em rest a bit, unless you are in the mood, like I am tonight, to wrestle with alligators.


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Last edited by Robert.A.Jr. on April 22nd, 2012, 3:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#2 Post by Patrick Friel » March 9th, 2012, 8:12 pm

Damn it, Robert! I've tasted this a couple times and still resisted buying. Yes, it is wonderful juice and an amazing deal for the price. Now I have to restart my "I don't need more syrah." mantra. [head-bang.gif]

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#3 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » March 10th, 2012, 7:09 am

It's worth buying, Patrick! And it's priced below many of the top-tier Cali syrahs that are touted on this Board.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#4 Post by John Morris » March 10th, 2012, 7:38 am

You're making me wish I'd bought more than three bottles.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#5 Post by Nathan L » March 10th, 2012, 7:49 am

John Morris wrote:You're making me wish I'd bought more than three bottles.
+1 and you are destroying my will not to pop one of those 3
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#6 Post by Matt Latuchie » March 10th, 2012, 9:20 am

i've had this a number of times now and i'm a huge fan. the word i immediately think of with this is "exotic". lots of sappy black fruit, but somehow doesn't seem forward or modern. love it's gaminess, and floral notes too.

just picked up a 6 pack of the 2010s!
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#7 Post by craig v » March 10th, 2012, 10:24 am

Robert, thanks for the notes! Now, that Clape Cornas is so expensive, I bought 3 of these from K&L for $35 ea. hoping for a traditional approach to Syrah at a great value. Sounds mostly traditional in style but big like the vintage, no?
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#8 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » March 10th, 2012, 10:33 am

craig vanderah wrote:Robert, thanks for the notes! Now, that Clape Cornas is so expensive, I bought 3 of these from K&L for $35 ea. hoping for a traditional approach to Syrah at a great value. Sounds mostly traditional in style but big like the vintage, no?
Bingo!

I'll likely pick up some Clape, too, but the price point is becoming limiting so my quantity will be small.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#9 Post by Zachary Ross » March 10th, 2012, 12:39 pm

I prefer Gonon to Clape anyway. Allemand on the other hand...
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#10 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » March 10th, 2012, 3:41 pm

Just killed the remainder of the bottle - about 1/4 remained. I'd adjust my rating upward. This is a very serious wine. Will say, though, it destroyed my grilled salmon in a wrestling match. Pair this wine with hearty food.

So, for Northern Rhone fans, any recommendations on other kick butt syrahs for 2009?

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#11 Post by John Morris » March 10th, 2012, 4:52 pm

From a tasting in October, here are five to look for. I've given both my original score and the revised score after retasting the leftovers on day 2 where I rerated them.

Graillot Crozes -- Though this ranked poorly, the remains showed much better the next night. 84?/90++ $31
Dard & Ribo Crozes - Spicy; I guessed Cornas tasting this blindly. Just as good the next night. 91 $42
Chave "Mon Coeur" - Softer, lower acid than some others, but yummy. 92 $21
Dom. de Fauterie (S. Bernard) Cornas - Tannic, but very impressive the second day. 86?/92 $43
Texier - Brezemes- A bit more diffuse on day 1. The second day the structure emerged. 85/90 $22

I think it's always a promising omen when a young Northern Rhone tastes better the day after.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#12 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » April 22nd, 2012, 3:51 am

After having popped a 2010 Bedrock syrah the night before, I was once again in the mood for a young, old world syrah. No time to hit my wine storage, so the only thing handy that fit the bill was the 2009 Gonon that I still have at home.

You could not find more contrast. Where the 2010 Bedrock remains remarkably primary, with very grapey dark fruits and sweet BBQ sauce, the 2009 Gonon is just a beautifully taut, earth-driven wine with nervous tension. Mineral-laden, crushed rocks. Wonderful tangy red fruits. Tannic, but not obtrusively so. Clearly needs time, but if you are in the mood for a youngster to wrestle, damn is this great stuff. As an aside, Lew started a recent thread on terroir. This wine is it.

So we immediately segued to a 2007 Beaucastel that my friend brought. Nearly undrinkable, especially in transition from the Gonon. Soft dark globular fruits. Spicey fruitcake. Heady alcohol. Pruney. A terrible disappointment from a winery I typically love. My friend's wife set it aside. I sipped it as an after-dinner liquor. Are these 2007 CDPs getting worse?

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#13 Post by Robert Panzer » April 22nd, 2012, 6:36 am

Robert, check out JL Chave's 2009 estate St Joseph. Stellar granite driven terroir, like the Gonon; a bit pricier due to both the Chave factor, as well as the 'more sets of hands inbetween' factor, but a fantastically complete wine....
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#14 Post by paul clark » April 22nd, 2012, 12:20 pm

Try Balthazar. Similar style. Great holdings in cornas. Reasonable prices (here in Switzerland...but you buy Gonon wines for a similar price to what I get it for here so I assume Balthazar for around 35 the bottle).

I agree with Dard & Ribo. Text book syrah.

Charvin turns out some nice CdR (and CdP). I have been loving 2009 CdR and it is certainly not pushing the over-ripe / alcoholic envelope.

Hope that helps.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#15 Post by Rick Gregory » April 22nd, 2012, 12:22 pm

Alfert... SHUT UP. MY VISA® CANT TAKE THIS.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#16 Post by Patrick Friel » April 22nd, 2012, 4:05 pm

Patrick Friel wrote:Now I have to restart my "I don't need more syrah." mantra. [head-bang.gif]

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone

#17 Post by Matt Latuchie » April 22nd, 2012, 5:44 pm

Robert Alfert, Jr. wrote:Just killed the remainder of the bottle - about 1/4 remained. I'd adjust my rating upward. This is a very serious wine. Will say, though, it destroyed my grilled salmon in a wrestling match. Pair this wine with hearty food.

So, for Northern Rhone fans, any recommendations on other kick butt syrahs for 2009?
While i've had some stellar 2009s from the Northern Rhone, I'm holding out for the 2010s. Should be a classic vintage.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#18 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » April 22nd, 2012, 6:07 pm

Rick Gregory wrote:Alfert... SHUT UP. MY VISA® CANT TAKE THIS.

That is all [cheers.gif]
LOL, love it! If I'm going down, i'm taking company with me! I ordered more today . . . .

And to Tooch, yea, I'm getting ready for the 2010s as well (Northern Rhone and Chinon). This is gonna hurt.

[wow.gif]

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#19 Post by salilb » April 22nd, 2012, 6:30 pm

Yeah, but it'll be a fun ride. 2010 Grezeaux tonight was absolutely beautiful.

BTW, make sure you own some of the 2010 Texier St. Joseph, and the Clape Cotes du Rhone. Great wines.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#20 Post by Marc Frontario » April 22nd, 2012, 7:15 pm

I'll likely pick up some Clape
Robert, I'm pretty sure you picked up 'the Clape' sometime ago [thankyou.gif]
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#21 Post by Matt Latuchie » April 22nd, 2012, 7:16 pm

Robert Alfert, Jr. wrote:
Rick Gregory wrote:Alfert... SHUT UP. MY VISA® CANT TAKE THIS.

That is all [cheers.gif]
LOL, love it! If I'm going down, i'm taking company with me! I ordered more today . . . .

And to Tooch, yea, I'm getting ready for the 2010s as well (Northern Rhone and Chinon). This is gonna hurt.

[wow.gif]
As Salil mentions, the 2010 Baudry Grezeaux is stellar...i'm looking forward to giving the 2010s from Rougeard a try, too.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#22 Post by Rick Gregory » April 22nd, 2012, 7:38 pm

Hear that??? It's my effing Visa® WHIMPERING. I hope you're all satisfied...
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#23 Post by paul clark » April 23rd, 2012, 1:12 am

I tasted through 20-ish vignerons 2008, 2009 and 2010 in Ampuis in January. Starting with the most frowned upon vintage, 2008 was indeed a year that produced a lot of lithe wines. Some were just undrinkable. Some, however, we're truly great. The difficulty I have with 2008 is some of the undrinkable wines came for domaines I normally like. Picking what to buy in this vintage is too hard. And with 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010 on the market do I really need to search out those 08's that were very good?

I am a supporter of 2009's. I don't champion them over the 2010's but I support them for being different to 2010. Tannins in 2009 are massive. The wines will require a lot more settling down and mellowing out. 2010 is beautifully balanced. Acidity is more noticeable in 2010 but that isn't to say the 09's aren't fresh. They have plenty of lift an vivacity; all that bounce just isn't getting over the wall of tannins at this stage. That said the 09's have a very dark fruit character that juxtaposes nicely against the redder fruit profiles of 2010. In both cases I would say good vigneron managed to make classic wines. 2009 is not another 2003. 2009 is classic like 2005. The wines are better balanced than the 2007s. 2010s are far more expressive and "kaleidoscopic" today. Both great years to follow and continue to compare as the wines evolve.

My point is 2009 is worth buying and storing. I think fans would regret passing up the vintage to stock up on a bunch of 2010. It is a classic year from good domaines and not to be dropped in the same box as 2003.

Incidentally I tasted the Gonon 2010 (aling with 2009 and 2004) with Jean and Pierre 3 weeks ago. No surprises. It performed similarly to my experiences in Ampuis. I am happy to have a case of 2009's in the cellar and happy to have a case of 2010 waiting for me to pick it up this weekend.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#24 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » April 23rd, 2012, 4:57 am

Thanks for the Post, Paul, that was helpful.

I passed on '08s as well.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#25 Post by paul clark » April 23rd, 2012, 5:11 am

Glad to know you find the comments useful. There are a handful of 08's that I would pick up if they were priced better. Currently the average 5CHF less per bottle than the 09's. No thanks. Knock off 30-40% of the 09 /10 pricing and you will get my attention. The good 08's drink nicely now and will continue to do so while providing some measure of cellar raiding control for the 09 / 10. Voge's VV (not the fountains but one step down the hierarchy) is a sublime example of a strong 08. Put it on sale at under 30 and it would be a great buy.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#26 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » April 23rd, 2012, 6:23 pm

salilb wrote:Yeah, but it'll be a fun ride. 2010 Grezeaux tonight was absolutely beautiful.

BTW, make sure you own some of the 2010 Texier St. Joseph, and the Clape Cotes du Rhone. Great wines.
Who carries the Texier, Salil?

I did pick up the 2010 Clape Vin des Amis, but have not taken delivery yet. As Frontario knows, me likely the Clape, baby!

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#27 Post by salilb » April 23rd, 2012, 6:29 pm

LDM brings the Texier St. Joseph in, Chambers in NY has some (last time I looked).

Haven't tried the Clape Vin des Amis... but their 'basic' Cotes du Rhone kicked ass recently.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#28 Post by Robert Panzer » April 23rd, 2012, 6:43 pm

Sippin' the 2010 Gonon tonight, along with the Courcel 2009 Bourgogne rouge. Two whole cluster critters of different ilk.....the balance in the Gonon is beautiful. Let's see how things unfold overnight...
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#29 Post by Claus Jeppesen » April 24th, 2012, 1:15 am

I would like to add Allemand as a producer who made really excellent wines in 2008.

I have opened both Reynard and Chaillot and they are wonderful. Better than 2007. Regarding the 2009 Gonon it is so delicious and tempting its hard to let them stay in the cellar and mature. The 2010 is a bit closed now, but promising.
Greetings, Claus

ps Richard Jennings agrees on the Allemands: http://www.rjonwine.com/northern-rhone/ ... -allemand/
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#30 Post by paul clark » April 24th, 2012, 12:58 pm

Thanks Claus, I haven't had the pleasure to taste a bottle yet.

Allemand...difficult vintages...he eats them for breakfast. Considering he "sorts" while the fruit is still on the vine I think the oïdium problem was more than contained. And then he let the famous 2008 north wind clean up but not for too long (a mistake some others made). Add that to his parcels (Reynard isn't exactly at the bottom of the Cornas wish list for vignerons and drinkers alike) and I like the 2008 chances from his stable.

Obsessive vineyard managers and vigneron not afraid to drop fruit (either in the vineyard or on the sorting table) seemed to do best. Those who approached 2008 with a "recipe" ignoring rot / oïdium clearly had residual signs showing up in the final wines.

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#31 Post by Claus Jeppesen » April 25th, 2012, 5:36 am

Thanks Paul, for even further insight.
I seems to me you are very knowledgeable on Northern Rhones. Your info is very welcome
/Claus
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#32 Post by GregT » April 25th, 2012, 6:08 am

Plus, I was pissed at my dog for breaking into wet dog food and staining the master bedroom carpet
Pissed at the dog, so he opens a Syrah. [cheers.gif]

BTW - what is "wet" dog food?

Did he figure out how to open a can?

And did he use a manual can opener or a power version?

A dog with opposable thumbs?

Might I suggest THAT'S the story rather than the wine?

Sheesh. Wine geeks.
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#33 Post by Russ Williams » April 25th, 2012, 6:20 am

GregT wrote:
Sheesh. Wine geeks.
We are a weird bunch aren't we?? [cheers.gif] [wow.gif]
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#34 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » April 25th, 2012, 12:20 pm

GregT wrote:
Plus, I was pissed at my dog for breaking into wet dog food and staining the master bedroom carpet
Pissed at the dog, so he opens a Syrah. [cheers.gif]

BTW - what is "wet" dog food?

Did he figure out how to open a can?

And did he use a manual can opener or a power version?

A dog with opposable thumbs?

Might I suggest THAT'S the story rather than the wine?

Sheesh. Wine geeks.
Way too much analysis my man!

First, I'll come up with any BS explanation to pop something good!

Second, you must own a wimpy dog. My 115 pound retriever rips through metal cans of wet food like hot knife through butter. Hence, his weight.....

Haha

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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#35 Post by Mark C » April 26th, 2012, 6:25 am

John et al, Wine Library has (3 less) of the 2010 Chave "Mon Coeur” for $19.98...
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Re: TN: 2009 Gonon St. Joseph Syrah - Excellent Northern Rhone [Popped another 4.21.12]

#36 Post by paul clark » April 27th, 2012, 5:51 am

Claus Jeppesen wrote:Thanks Paul, for even further insight.
I seems to me you are very knowledgeable on Northern Rhones. Your info is very welcome
/Claus
Thanks Claus. I should mention Guillaume Gilles as a great reference for Cornas. New name but classic approach. Folks following this discussion would appreciate his style. At half the cost of Clape...but I wouldn't trust his prices stay that way forever once the critics start sniffing around.

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