2019 Le Galouchey, Vin de Jardins Rouge "MMXIX"
2019 Le Galouchey, Vin de Jardins Rouge "MMXIX"

2019 Le Galouchey, Vin de Jardins Rouge "MMXIX"

Bordeaux, France 2019 (750mL)
Regular price$47.00

2019 Le Galouchey, Vin de Jardins Rouge "MMXIX"

Sumptuous yet elegant, rich yet refined, soulful and silky…the superlatives were flowing freely as this incredibly unique red made its way around the table. Le Galouchey is a “cult” wine in every way except one: It is not expensive. In fact, it is shockingly affordable given that it hails from a tiny, one-hectare “estate” helmed by a famous Parisian sommelier, Marco Pelletier. It’s found in star-studded spots like Le Bernadin in New York, République in Los Angeles, and of course at Pelletier’s own spot, the acclaimed Vantre in Paris (winner of “Best Wine List” from the Revue du Vin de France in 2021). The pedigree and quality is obvious from the first sip, but Pelletier and his partner prefer to think of it as a “garden wine,” produced on the “wrong side” of the Dordogne River, on Bordeaux’s Right Bank. Bottom line? It’s a sumptuous, velvety Bordeaux (if not in name) that ranks as one of the most amazing Bordeaux values we’ve ever encountered. Much as we shouldn’t hype it up so much (we’d like to be able to get more in the future, and there’s very little to go around), we can’t help ourselves. This wine is the ultimate rarity: minuscule production, soaring quality, and affordable, too? Don’t delay!

The tiny Domaine de Galouchey is headquartered in the town of Beychac-et-Caillau, just west of Libourne on the south bank of the Dordogne River. There’s just a single hectare of vines, planted by hand in 2002 on a “virgin” piece of land, and in addition to usual suspects like Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon, there’s also Carmenère, Petit Verdot, and an assortment of whites—all of which (nine varieties in total) are used in the “Le Galouchey” cuvée.

Marco Pelletier is a Master Sommelier and restaurateur whose past gigs included stints at major wine meccas like Taillevent and Epicure at Le Bristol. He has a long history with Bordeaux wines, but for this wine, he and his partners (old friends Jean Terrade, and Gérard Pantanacce) aim to produce what they call a “garden wine”—a hand-farmed, handmade wine of deliberately modest, “drink everyday” ambitions. They’ve accomplished a lot more than that with this wine, but you’d never know it from the price.

Each of the nine varieties is separately harvested by hand, manually de-stemmed (berry by berry), no crushing, the must is principally free-run. Each is separately fermented in stainless steel over indigenous yeasts. No extraction, with limited pumping-over only to keep the cap moist. After the alcoholic fermentation is complete, the young wine is racked into stainless vats where malolactic fermentation begins; then racked again into three- and 4-year-old Bordeaux and Burgundy barrels to age for 30 months. 

When you bottle a French wine as “table wine,” as Le Galouchey has done here, you’re not technically supposed to include a vintage date, but most producers do so anyway (here they’ve gone the roman numeral route with “MMXIX.” This wine definitely exhibits the concentration and complexity of the highly regarded ’19 vintage, displaying that magical combination of power and finesse. In the glass, it’s a deep, nearly opaque ruby-black in color, but in no way monolithic or over-extracted on the palate—this is balanced, brooding, exceedingly elegant Bordeaux. It delivers saturated aromas and flavors of violets, black plum, and blueberry mixed with cocoa powder, leather, crushed gravel, and tobacco. It is plush, silky, and opulent but with a mineral, wet-clay imprint that roots it in the Right Bank. Decant it about 30 minutes before enjoying at about 60 degrees in large Bordeaux stems; over the next 3-5 years, this wine is going to be singing, ready to impress anew each time. Take our advice and don’t stop at one. Cheers!

2019 Le Galouchey, Vin de Jardins Rouge "MMXIX"

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