About 60% Grenache, 40% Mourvèdre
Brothers Frédéric and François Alary are the tenth generation of winemakers to tend this estate in the Côtes-du-Rhône over the last 300 years (the family history goes back to 1692). They succeeded their father in 1984, and cultivate 27HA of some of the best plots in Cairanne. The Alarys’ vineyards are located on steep hills of two main lieux-dits, les Douyes and St-Martin.
The estate takes its name from the small chapel (oratoire) that stands in this last plot. The soil is very rocky, with a high proportion of limestone and two types of clay, yellow on the surface and blue deeper down. Les Douyes’ exposure is east, northeast and well-suited to growing white grapes and Syrah, all early maturing varietals. St-Martin is warmer, facing south, south-west and that’s where Grenache and Mourvèdre grow. Most of the vines are over 40 years old and some are reaching their 100s. Organic/traditional.
What The Critics Say
92-94/100 Wine Advocate, Joe Czerwinski
"Still in foudres when I visited, the 2016 Cairanne les Douyes is a lieu-dit planted to 60% Grenache and 40% Mourvèdre that's vinified with a large proportion of stems, "to keep freshness," according to Frédéric Alary. It's floral and sappy, with brilliant cherries and stone fruit. Full-bodied, supple and silky, it's concentrated and long on the finish, a super effort worth chasing down." Drink 2019 - 2030
16.5/20 Jancis Robinson
"Firm, furry tannin, bitter black fruit and a much cleaner finish than their other two cuvées. Savoury and tight-knit. Not a user-friendly style, but one which shows the most serious side of the southern Rhône. (RH)." Drink 2019 - 2028
"This is no ordinary Cotes du Rhone, in fact I'd go so far as to saying it's the best I've ever tasted." -- Bob Cambell.
“This is possibly the best domaine in the entire Côtes du Rhône-Villages area. The wines are full, intense and concentrated, surprisingly sophisticated. At less than half the price of a top Châteauneuf this domaine offers splendid value for money.” -- Clive Coates.
"Domain de l'Oratoire St-Martin is one of the Southern Rhone Valley's most conspicuous overachievers, making wines that are far above their humble appellations. All of their wines go into the bottle with no filtration and only a light fining. This is the type of estate that brings smiles to consumers who happen upon their wines. They are reasonably priced and qualitatively equivalent to wines selling at two or three times the price.” -- Robert Parker.
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