SAOUMA RHONE By Jeb Dunnuck
This domaine is owned by Burgundy-based Mounir and Rotem Saouma, and you can certainly find more than passing resemblances to high-class Burgundies in these wines. They prefer long elevages, with the wines spending plenty of time on skins in amphoras and casks.
These are expensive, yet beautiful wines.
- 2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Blanc Magis White 95
- 2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Côtes Du Rhône Inopia Red 89
- 2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Châteauneuf-du-Pape Omnia Red 94
- 2013 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Arioso Red 95
- 2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Côtes du Rhône Blanc Inopia White 91
2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Côtes du Rhône Blanc Inopia
Made from a mix of white varieties (I wasn’t able to find the blend) that was aged 18 months in foudre and concrete eggs, the 2014 Côtes du Rhône Inopia from this terrific estate is a classy, high-quality white that offers lots of buttered citrus, sautéed apple, honeycomb, and crushed rocks. It has plenty of richness and depth, yet offers a bright, clean and crisp finish. It needed plenty of air to show at its best and it’s an age-worthy effort to enjoy anytime over the coming 4-6+ years.
2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Côtes du Rhône Rouge Inopia
The 2014 Côtes du Rhône Nopia shows the house elegance and freshness, with lots of black cherries, black raspberry, peppery herbs and earth aromas and flavors. Made from a mix of varieties (again, I’m not sure on the blend here) and bottled unfined and unfiltered, this medium-bodied, silky, elegant red is another one that needs a decadent if drinking anytime soon. Drink it through 2022.
2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Blanc Magis
The 2014 Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Blanc Magis is primarily Grenache Blanc mixed with 10% each of Clairette and Roussanne, and 5% Bourboulenc. Fermented and aged two years in French oak, it was never racked, pumped, fined or filtered. It offers a gorgeous bouquet of white peach, honeysuckle, brioche and wet stone-like nuances. Deep, rich and layered, with beautiful purity and length, it’s another sensational white that’s going to evolve for at least a decade, and I suspect quite a bit longer.
2014 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Châteauneuf-du-Pape Omnia
The Chambolle-Musigny of the southern Rhône, the 2014 Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Omnia is 80% Grenache and 10% each of Syrah and Mourvèdre which was fermented with no destemming and aged two years in French oak. It light ruby color is followed by a gorgeous perfume of raspberries, dried rose petals, strawberries, white pepper and just hints of garrigue. Elegant and ethereal, yet with terrific length and depth, it’s a Burgundy lovers Châteauneuf du Pape that’s going to keep for 10-15 years, and that’s saying something for a 2014. Bravo!
2013 Rotem & Mounir Saouma Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Arioso
Tasting like a Grand Cru from Chambertin, the 2013 Châteauneuf-Du-Pape Arioso is 100% Grenache from the Pignan plateau that spent three years in barrel, on lees, before being bottled unfined and unfiltered. Black cherry, forest floor, spring flowers, damp earth, and spice all flow to a medium-bodied, ethereally textured, seamless 2013 that opens up beautifully with time in the glass. Again, this is unquestionably a Burgundy lover’s Châteauneuf, and it shines more for its nuance, elegance, and complex more so than outright power and richness. With bright, yet integrated acidity and ample, sweet tannin, it’s a sensational 2013 and one of the best from the vintage.