Chez Joel Little Italy Chicago Dinner features Croze-Hermitage Syrah
With a colleague in from out of town, we dined at Chez Joel Bistro in Little Italy on Taylor Street in Chicago on the near south side, near the UIC, not far from our office, one of my favorite neighborhood bistros.
From the menu my colleague selected the Duck Confit with red cabbage, one of my favorites and a usual selection. I chose the petit filet of boeuf with the buttered potatoes.
Prior to dinner we had the endive and the beet salads, accompanied by the pate with cornichons, mustard and toast points.
We chose the wine list a perennial favorite that I have had several times, a Crozes-Hermitage Northern Rhône Syrah, an ideal pairing with the pate, our salads and the entrees.
Maison Les Alexandrins Crozes-Hermitage Syrah 2018
We've had several vintages of this label, most recently on our visit to Chez Joel a couple months ago, tonight being the first time tasting this 2018 release.
The right bank of the Rhône River is composed of old volcanic Gneiss and granite rocks with sandy-clay soils that give the wine a powerful and rustic character and minerality.
The opposing left bank of the Rhône also has granite soil with pebbles from the glaciers, rounded and polished by the Rhône that keep the heat of the day and give it back at night resulting in concentration of sugars and aromas.
This vintage release is a blend of 95% Syrah and 5% Viognier.
It was awarded 89 points by Wine Spectator.
The winemaker's notes on this wine: "This 2018 Syrah immediately displays its colour: it is a gourmet wine that comes in a beautiful concentrated red robe. Precise on the nose, it offers an attractive variety of aromas like small red fruit and liquorice. On the palate, it already reveals its roundness, with a nice acidity on the attack and a fruity finish."
This was dark garnet with deep purple colored, medium full bodied of blackberry, black cherry and ripe plum with notes of spice, black pepper, tobacco and black tea with round full approachable tannins on the tangy finish.
RM 90 points.