Wines to Seek Out
A prime postal code without a premium on the posh factor, Château de Montfaucon offers some of the best values in all of southern France. They boast some of the best holdings and their mindful farming combined with inspired winemaking culminates as excellence in the glass.
Château de Montfaucon Viognier
Rudi once explained that just as achieving exquisite flavor and tenderness of a simple roast chicken is the mark of an excellent chef, so too is the challenge of finding balance in Viognier. As such, even though his Viognier is among his least expensive wines, it gets much of his attention every year as he challenges himself to capture its compelling floral perfume without sacrificing acidity and overall freshness. This is a Viognier for those who don't think they love Viognier, as it is never boozy, it chirps with just-ripe stone fruits, and the perfume is kept to a quiet hum. It is not your grandma's Sunday spritz.
Château de Montfaucon Clairette "Vin de Mme la Comtesse" Lirac Blanc
There are few other vineyards in the world that can rival the magnificence of this 140+ year old ungrafted Clairette vineyard. It's no wonder Rudi kept a close eye on it for decades before he was able to seize it. Most would rip up the vines for the pragmatic reason that it is simply not economical — these gnarly old bush vines simply do not produce much fruit. But for Rudi, this has been a love affair. His whole heart on one patch of land. As the rain came down and the wind was pushing us sideways, he enthusiastically introduced my partner and I to each individual vine as though they were his children. Marzipan and orange blossoms are accented with anise and honey in this unforgettable wine.
Château de Montfaucon Côtes-du-Rhône
Go ahead and prove me wrong. Find another Côtes-du-Rhône at this price point that even comes close to the quality this wine delivers. This wine never ceases to blow people away for the pound of joy it packs on the palate for the price of admission. All estate-grown and handpicked (a rarity for “basic” Côtes-du-Rhône wines, no?), this red reflects a blend of five varieties led by Grenache (50%). A panoply of red and black fruit is tempered with savory dried herbs, lavender and black tea. It is the mid-week, no-brainer, steal that we wine lovers are constantly seeking.
Château de Montfaucon Baron Louis Lirac
A compilation of the finest parcels within the Lirac cru, this flagship red is named for Baron Louis who restored this Château in the 1800s and set it on the path that Rudi and his family have continued to this day. It is the epitome of all this appellation has to offer — the opulence and elegance so many of Château de Montfaucon's wines seem to straddle. Here, kirsch meets cassis and in the background there buzzes a melody of the Southern Rhone's greatest hits: a heady mixture of warm rocks, herbs de Provence, sunflowers, and garrigue.
Château de Montfaucon Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Rudi never intended to cross that river. But curiosity is what makes great winemakers. Where some CdPs are loud and boisterous — a beefcake at a gun show— this one is all grace and beauty. This small one-hectare patch of old Grenache vines gives birth to a style that is soft and silky on the palate, especially when its maker has a gentle touch in the cellar. Raspberry and ripe cherry fruit, red tea and violets. This is a refreshing alternative to some of the heavier hitters in this category.