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  • Writer's pictureAllison Sheardy

Tasting Today: 2018 Domaine Tempier Bandol Rosé

Updated: Jul 5, 2021

Tasting Today is a series of WSET-style tasting notes, based on their Systematic Approach to Tasting (SAT). While the SAT can be used to deduce a variety or region during a blind tasting, it is especially useful for determining the style and quality of a wine. I wrote hundreds of SAT tasting notes and assessments while I worked my way through the WSET Level 3 Award in Wine and then the Diploma. It is no secret that I am a big fan of the Wine and Spirits Education Trust and their approach to wine education; click here for more information on their programs. I am always available to answer any questions about the different levels and my experiences as well!

On to the tasting...

Appearance: This wine is pale pink-orange.

Nose: Intensity on the nose is medium+. Aromas include grapefruit, peach skin, pomegranate, strawberry, tart red cherry, herbs de Provence, smoke, almond,

and beeswax. Fruit is ripe.

Palate: This wine is dry with medium+ acidity, medium alcohol (label abv is an unusual 11-14% range), a medium body and medium+ finish. Flavor intensity is medium+, and flavors include grapefruit, peach skin, pomegranate, strawberry, tart red cherry, herbs de Provence, smoke, almond, and beeswax. Fruit is ripe. There is no tannin.

Quality: This wine is very good. The refreshing acidity is balanced by ripe fruit characteristics and a slight smoky note from the Mourvèdre in the blend. Both aromas and flavors have medium+ intensity, and the flavors are concentrated. This wine also displays complexity with aromas and flavors ranging from citrus and red fruits to herbal and waxy. The wine has some texture and weight as well, adding to the complexity. The finish is medium+; a longer finish would push this wine into outstanding territory. As it is, the fine balance, complexity, and medium+ intensity prevent the wine from being anything less than very good.

Suitability for Bottle Aging: Yes, this wine is suitable for bottle aging. The acidity will hold the wine structurally during aging and the medium+ intensity of aromas and flavors can withstand aging as well. The flavors are concentrated and complex; further aging with lead to more tertiary notes developing (dried fruits and herbs), adding to the complexity.

Region of Origin: France, Provence, Bandol

Grape Variety/Varieties: Mourvèdre (~ 50%) with Grenache and Cinsault

Additional notes: This rosé is one often used as an example of age worthy rosé (in an ongoing debate of whether that is even a thing), so I purposefully waited a few years before opening it (only three, but hey, I thought that showed extreme restraint on my part). I thought it held up beautifully and could continue to develop, as noted above. A direct quote from their website (I added the highlighting for emphasis):

"AGING 6 – 8 months before being bottled. Conservation : 1 – 5 years. However it may be kept much longer as it will take on flavors of candied citrus fruit, melon and rose petal."

I may be an aged rosé convert.

Some additional specs from Kermit Lynch's website (the longtime importer of Domaine Tempier)

"Bandol Rosé: • All grapes are harvested by hand • Rosé made 65% direct press, 35% maceration • Partial malolactic fermentation • Wine ferments and ages 50% in stainless steel tank and 50% in concrete tank for 7 months."

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