Served as part of the Wines of Southern France gourmet evening last night. Simon paired a lovely little date, raisin and mature cheddar "burger" with this as the cheese course. It was following a 2000 Domaine de Trevaillon, so I was slightly dubious as to whether it would have the strength to follow it, but it coped really well and drew a lot of positive comments.
The wine is a blend of mostly grenache (70%) with rest being syrah. The town of Collioure nestles on the cusp of the Spanish border in the heart of the Basque region of France and it seems to have a very Spanish influence to its flavours. The wine exhibits strong bramble fruit flavours with a savoury influence, quite sun baked in character. The alcohol sits at 14.5% and it is quite evident on the nose with a prickly tingling on the old nostril hairs, but on the palate the wine is perfectly balanced, the medium tannins holding the flavours together and seemingly keeping the alcohol in check. The length is quite long with summery black berry flavours giving way to an almost savoury garrigue-y herbal finish of thyme and peppercorns. While it certainly worked quite well with the cheese, this would be a cracker of a wine for something like a roasted leg of lamb with plenty of rosemary and thyme. While as an 05 it was certainly drinkable it would definately benefit from a year or two of slumber in the cellar.