Silky, glossy red with obvious aromas of plum pie, smoky bacon and crushed violets. Smooth and elegant yet concentrated and complex - ripe, round tannins, soft acidity and mouth-coating flavours of hedgerow fruits, vanilla and tapenade - a real velvet fist!
Drink with soft cheeses, slow roasted lamb shank or venison casserole.
Lavau grows its grapes (even split of Shiraz and Grenache) near the village of Rasteau itself, on east-facing, stony hillsides. The vines are planted on deep, dry, pebbly terrain, resulting in low yields and dependable ripening. No new oak is used for the maturation, with the young wine going into 450-litre barrels previously used for one or two vintages.
Rasteau is a Rhône appellation, 25km NE of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Traditionally the region has been known for its Port-style 'vin doux naturels', but the DOP's producers have moved with the times and now there is more focus on dry wines in all 3 main colours. Until 2010 the parish's non-sweet bottlings appeared under the Cotes-du-Rhone-Villages-Rasteau name, but these highly regarded wines were promoted to full, independent appellation status in July of that year and now trade as, simply, 'Rasteau'.