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Domaine Alary

Cairanne, Southern Rhône, France


Denis Alary in the cellar

Recently promoted from AC Village to a fully-fledged Cru (to rank alongside Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Tavel, Lirac and Châteauneuf-du-Pape), exciting changes are happening in the hamlet of Cairanne. This is in no small measure due to the patience and knowledge of the Chair of the Appellation for the past 20 years, Denis Alary – a quiet thoughtful man and one of the nicest people you are ever likely to meet. The first Alarys arrived to cultivate the vines here in 1692; ten generations on, Denis, supported by his family, produces exceptional wines.

Jean-Etienne, Denis’ son (the 11th Generation) has just finished working the 2018 vintage at Henschke. Before he went home he flew up to Sydney where we had a great lunch at Bistro Papillon. Like his father, he is smart, humble & hard working with good vision to the future; a credit to the region. We are going to increase the range we take from Domaine Alary as the wines are simply that good!

Jean-Etienne & Jeremy enjoying their lunch.

Denis works the ancient soils, slowly and by hand. The soil is turned with organic input only, leaf removal and low yields. They then hand harvest, apply due diligence on their sorting table and very softly press. Then the varietals are vinified separately – Grenache, Syrah and Carignan (average vine age 40 years) are the ingredients. These wines represent the very heart and soul of the Southern Rhône.

64 year old Grenache Vine – Domaine Alary – Cotes du Rhone