I participated in a blind tasting for the Guide Hachette des Vins. I was placed at the Grignan-les-Adhémar appellation table. There were 17 samples (reds and whites) from 2015 vintage. I was with a friend of mine who is also a Sommelier-Conseil, a student from a wine college and a retired appellation quality control inspector. We exchanged knowledge and discussed tasting notes. It was interesting and instructive.
To be honest, I am not quite familiar with the appellation. I have tasted some in the class and never bought a bottle. The production zone covers 21 villages with charming landscapes. It is one of the prettiest, most untouched region of the south of France, sharing lavender fields and oak trees. Red and rosés wines are made from syrah, grenache, carignan, mourvedre and cinsault blends. Whites are made from vines that traditionally found in the Rhône Valley i.e. marsanne, roussanne, bourboulenc, clairette, viognier and grenache blanc.
From the tasting:
The white wines are promising. They have lovely aromatic noses. Some of them lack in acidity and complexity. The 100% viognier wines reminded me of Condrieu (The king of viognier) in less concentrated and refined way.
The reds are fresh and light with silky tannins. Red fruits, liquorice noses with a touch of spice and garigue. We tasted some of well-made oaked wines. There was one with an incredible truffle nose.
We eliminated 3 samples; 2 whites and 1 corked. Overall, they are basic and good quality wines. If you are looking for a good value and attractive bottle, you will not be disappointed with the Grignan-les-Adhémar. You can also find some very good bottles that distinguish from others. Our favourite red from the tasting is an impressive and well-balanced wine.