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Wine of the Month – May 2012: The Foundry Roussanne 2010 (The Wine Society £10.95)

May 11, 2012 8:10 am / by

This unusual wine from Stellenbosch, South Africa is the maiden vintage of this varietal from The Foundry.  Roussanne is most associated with white wines in the Rhone.  In the northern Rhone, blended with Marsanne, it is found in white Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph.  In the south, without Marsanne, it is one of the four varietals permitted in white Chateauneuf-Du-Pape.  In the New World it is most often found in Australia.  This South African version showcases the complexity of the varietal on its own.  The Stellenbosch climate gives it a tropical twist not found in its Rhone counterpart.

The Foundry Roussanne vineyards, grown on the farm Fijndraai in Stellenbosch, on partially decomposed granite soils with low production per hectare, produces very small berries and quite tight bunches.  On the nose there is a wonderfully intense aroma of stone fruits and herbs with a hint of minerality reminiscent of young Chablis.  On the palate there is a luscious combination of pear, tropical fruit with some citrus notes balanced by a minerality which is now pronounced and appropriate acidity.  The finish is astonishingly long.  This is a well made and well balanced wine which can be drunk perfectly on its own.

I demonstrated this wine for the first time recently (it is new to me too) at a Chez Lloyd event and it was an instant hit with all the guests who unanimously proclaimed it as the best of the whites on offer that day.  I didn’t disagree!  So, spoil yourself and get some of this varietal not often seen on its own.  It is well worth joining the Wine Society for.  Lifetime membership costs £40 but this one-off fee will repay itself many times over as you discover the wines on offer.  The Wine Society has been awarded Wine Merchant of the Year 2011 status by both Decanter and the International Wine Challenge.
 

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