We thoroughly enjoyed our day in the Northern Rhone a few weeks ago. After reading the other TA reviews and my email back-and-forth with Paul, my expectations were high, yet they were still exceeded. We learned a lot, and I have a newfound love for the region. Paul thoughtfully curated a really fun and informative day, and, of course, we tasted some amazing wines.
We thoroughly enjoyed our driving tour/education in between visits, the pre-selected lunch spot, and separate visits to great Crozes-Hermitage and Cote-Rotie vineyards. However, we'll always have a soft spot for Phillipe and his operation at Domaine de Gouye, after our experience at his property in Saint-Joseph (see attached pic). Getting to spend time directly with the owner/farmer/winemaker, try his current vintages and an older vintage pulled from the cellar, and even share some hand-cut saucisson with him on his rustic property, was just the sort of micro-production experience we were aiming for. We'll never forget any of it.
Paul seems to specialize in forming trusted relationships with smaller producers in the regions he serves, and that appealed to us, having been to plenty of industrial-strength producers in Napa/Sonoma and Oregon in the past (some of which make great wine, but, as with any region where there are exceptions, the larger producers rarely offer a very intimate tasting experience).
Until the next time, when we'd love to hit the southern Rhone Valley with you, Paul (and maybe get back to the North for another visit), thanks for all of your help! We deeply appreciated it.
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