Fairly dense ruby, quite staining, with wide fluorescent pink edges. Initial barnyard presses the funk-O-meter to 11–no vegetal, just cra-cra animal, animal lodging, animal playground, animal everything. It’s omnipresent and I considered it a permanent feature of the nose. I was wrong. 30 minutes of air and the nose morphs into a green streak of latex and cold rocks, a crisp minerality and tart pie cherry pushing Kalamata ahead of it but never getting bogged down in saline. A tiny tomato-plant vegetal leads the imagination into Cru-bojo or even Chinon territory, exemplifying how fresh and bright this thing is.

Le Plan! Le Plan! Sorry, but I can’t help but go half-Fantasy Island and half-A-TEAM. And every time I walk by it in the cellar I think German, because VERMEERSH. But this little suze-la-rousse is all Rhone, baby.

In the mouth, a fruit-FWD tart little child, yummy plum and gooseberry bow almost instantly to the tannin-gods. Black walnut tincture and a touch of petrol creep in early and escalates to shrill acid and bitter vocalizations quickly, but everywhere all around, sweet calm fruit basks brightly. This wine may come off as simple and easy-drinking at first, but a monster lurks in there, and collective re-visits proclaim a FAR more serious wine than initially considered. An absolutely brilliant wine.

2017 DIRK VERMEERSCH ‘Le Plan’ SY/MV 50/50 Suze-La-Rousse Cotes du Rhone Villages AOP 13.5


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