Piaugier Sablet Rouge 2019

One of the Southern Rhone's Top Values: 2020 Domaine de Piaugier Sablet Rouge

Hello old friend! I have been anxiously awaiting the release of the 2020 Piaugier Sablet. After tasting it last week, I bought a bunch, and I've got it back on deal at a way-too-low price. This is a wine that drinks a lot like Gigondas, but it costs half the price.

I said it last year, and I’ll say it again, this is one of top Southern Rhone values I’ve tasted in my 20+ year wine career. Plus, the 2020 vintage was one that was deemed great throughout the Rhone Valley. A bit more like the 2018 vintage than the 2019, this is concentrated yet fresh and ready to drink.

Domaine de Piaugier Sablet Rouge

2020 Domaine de Piaugier Sablet Rouge

One of the great red wine values of the Southern Rhone! 

ORDER NOW in our online store. 

The village of Sablet, just north of Gigondas, is know for its sandy soils. In fact, “sable” translates to “sand” in French. It is these sandy soils that make Piaugier’s Sablet Rouge so uniquely delicious. Dirt isn’t the most exciting thing to talk about, but it plays a huge role in wine, from the vineyard to the bottle. It’s a known fact amongst “cork dorks” like myself that well-drained, sandy soils are notorious for producing vibrant, elegant, and highly aromatic Grenache-based wines.

In the words of Robert Parker, “This small estate, managed with intelligence and talent by Jean-Marc Autran, deserves praise for its Côtes du Rhônes.” Yes they do and thanks for noticing Bob! Jean-Marc and his wife Sophie farm their 12.5 hectares in Sablet without the use of chemical fertilizers or sprays. In addition, all of their grapes are hand harvested and sorted. They ferment in cement tanks with indigenous yeasts and they aged this one in used barriques for 18-24 months. They then bottle with minimal filtration and sulfur addition.

This traditional, meticulous and “slow” way of crafting their wines is counter to the many highly processed wines that line the shelves at grocery stores. And that’s why this tastes better! But surprisingly, it doesn’t cost that much more. Nope, this blend of 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah, all from 30-50+ year old vines, is soulful and full of character, much like your favorite wine monger.

Just 2,500 cases were produced in the hot, dry, and sunny 2020 vintage. Offering up a perfect mix of concentrated raspberry, blackberry, black cherry, violet, cracked black pepper, and smoky herb, this one smells as good as it tastes. Like the 2018, the palate is full-bodied yet fine-grained, with ripe tannin and zesty acidity. There is a ton to like here folks!

Delicious now, I suspect this will offer pleasurable drinking through at least 2027. Heck, it might even improve, but I don’t see how it could taste much better than it does right now. A perfect red for rich and hearty stews and grilled meats, it's also great with nothing more than a glass and a good friend or two.

ORDER NOW in our online store. 

Josh Spurling
Owner, Operator, Wine Monger
Table Wine Asheville