Alain Voge Cornas Les Chailles – Syrah; Cornas, Rhone, France; 2019 

 January 9, 2024

By  rackhouse

Since its inception, several generations ago, Domaine Alain Voge has always been a family domain located in Cornas. In 1958, Alain Voge joined his father to work on the small typical farm. He decided to specialize in wine.

At the time, it was an audacious decision: despite their history, the Cornas and Saint Peray appellations were forgotten sleeping beauties. Very quickly, he extended the vineyards in places that had remained uncultivated over the last 30 years.

Thanks to their quality and to Alain Voge’s creative approach, the domain’s reputation has rapidly increased. Their philosophy is to practice hand-made viticulture on the slopes of the Rhône right bank, dedicated to Syrah and Marsanne.

Cornas Rhone, France is distinguished as a fine Syrah-producing zone since the 18th century, Cornas, like Cote Rotie, is made up of vineyards covering steep and hard-to-work, granite terraces. As a result, the region’s wines fell out of favor during the mid-20th century when the global market was more focused on bulk wines and vineyards that yielded high quantities. It wasn’t until the 1980s when a group of energetic young winemakers reestablished the integrity of these precipitous terraces and also began making an ultra-modern style of Syrah. The new style didn’t need a decade before it was drinkable and could reach the consumer faster than the region’s traditional wines. Given the new quality coming out of the zone, its popularity once again soared and today a good Cornas can easily challenge many of those from Hermitage. Characteristics of Syrah from Cornas include teeth-staining flavors of blackberry jam, plum, pepper, violets, smoked game, charcoal, chalk dust, and smoke.

Not only did Jeb Dunnuck give this wine 93 points but also said, “Medium to full-bodied, textured, and nicely structured, it can be enjoyed today but will benefit from just a handful of years in the cellar and have 15 to 20 years of overall longevity.”

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