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jolie laideThis is one of the more unique wines I’ve tasted this year. It’s an unusual blend of Alpine grapes—Trousseau, Poulsard, Gamay plus a bit of Valdiguie, all of which are hard to find in the U.S. The first impression is of that juicy, bright so called “glou-glou” quality that natural wines aspire to, but there is a lot of complexity here once you start nosing around, and the bristly, yet tightly woven texture takes this out of the easy-drinking, party wine category. This is serious juice.

Bright red pomegranate and red apple notes are slathered in cinnamon, then topped with a layer of quarry dust. It pulsates with kinetic energy—a juicy yet diaphanous attack, succumbs to the big squeeze with layers of expansive minerality and taut tannins compressing the fruit while the volume swells before launching several stages of tart on the stone and orange peel-infused finish. It has good length and a body that shows a bit of weight here a bit of weightlessness there—a lively froth of great energies run amok.

Fun and freewheeling in an atmospheric way but also brash and resolute with a sarcastic edge. Pair with the Nigerian dancehall sensation Burna Boy’s “Anybody”.

Score: 93

Price: $34 (Purchase Here)

Alc: 12.3%