At least I thought they were. It’s been two and a half years since I committed infanticide on a bottle of Clape’s 2014 Côtes du Rhône. Back then on a balmy summer evening in the company of all new Bordelaise ex-Quebecoise and born in Reims Sophie Suraniti it screamed two things: Put me back in the bottle, you oaf! And Violets.
Heady, perfumed violets.
So last night, with Elodie’s standard Lentilles et Saucisses comfort food, it was time for a re-visit. I am somewhat Beaujolais-ed out at the moment, so time to slip down the Rhône the other side of Lyon to Cornas. Clape’s 2014 Côtes du Rhône was just right; much more consistent than Guigal, and boy, do I get bored by that wine, and more sturdy and solid than Charvin’s elegant grenache laden version from Chateauneuf du Pape.
In the new-found, and irritatingly grating lingo of wine geeks, this was “pnp” – pop and pour, so no decanter. Possibly a mistake as I could not find a violet at all, not a petal. A deep ruby, with soft but firm tannin and Syrah’s tell-tale meaty aromas, but no violets.
Suddenly half an hour in, a burst of floral uproar, “born glorious summer“. An amazing and sudden transformation that took my discipline to the limit – leaving half the bottle for tomorrow was a feat of self-denial.
But then I had had a couple of Palo Cortados before dinner.