Ray Jane Bandol Rouge 2016

Josh's Favorite New Red: 2016 Domaine Ray Bandol Rouge

SOLD OUT! I've got a serious crush on the 2016 Domaine Ray Jane Bandol Rouge. This Mourvedre-heavy red is full of character and charm, and it truly showcases why many wine lovers believe the reds from this Provencal appellation are some of the finest produced in all of Southern France.

These powerful reds often need a good 5 to 10 years to show best.....good news, this one already has 6 years of "bottle conditioning." In case you forgot, Vintage 2016 was one of the best of the century throughout Southern France. The quality of the vintage and producer are 100% on display in this wonderful red wine.

Domaine Ray Jane Bandol Rouge

2016 Domaine Ray Jane Bandol Rouge 

Intense, rustic, charming, and thought-provoking. - 95 points - Josh Spurling  


The residents and producers of Bandol say there are two types of wine drinkers in the world: those who know and adore the reds of Bandol, and those that don't know the wines of Bandol. I get it, this is a unique wine that requires a specific set of circumstances to thrive and produce compelling wines. For that reason alone, not much makes it to the US.

Bandol Rouge would be hard to produce in any other region of France besides Provence. The wines must contain at least 50% Mourvedre, a grape that yields powerfully spicy red wines, but the grape requires a hot and sunny climate to ripen fully. The vineyards surrounding the small seaside village of Bandol, in Southern Provence, offer the perfect set of sunny and hot days that allow Mourvedre to gain perfect ripeness.

In the right hands, these grapes are then transformed into a grand red wine that is unlike any other in the world. Domaine Ray Jane is one of the oldest and most respected producers of the region. Located just a half mile south of the famed Domaine Tempier, the Constant family have owned and run this estate since 1288. All of their vineyards are certified organic, and all of their vines are extremely old. We're talking 100+ years old!

These old vines, years of experience, and a nearly perfect vintage combined to create a very memorable wine. Ray Jane's 2016 Bandol Rouge is a blend of 90% Mourvedre, 5% Grenache, and 5% Cinsault that sees 2 years of aging in older French oak. Combining a Cabernet-like elegance with a rustic charm, this explodes out of the glass with intense notes of Provencal herbs, pepper, black fruits, dark chocolate, leather, and tobacco.

Firm and structured, this almost tastes like a hypothetical blend of Left Bank Bordeaux meets Gigondas. Don't be fooled into thinking this stuff is past its peak. Sure, it's drinking great right now with a 2 hour decant, but this is a wine that will continue to evolve, age, and improve for another 10 to 15 years. 

One of the all time great red wines to serve with lamb, it also tastes really good with a simple spread of cured meats, olives, cheese, and baguette. One last bit of advice: buy some before I buy it all :) Cheers to drinking the good stuff in the AVL! 

Josh Spurling
Owner, Operator, Wine Monger
Table Wine Asheville