My acquaintance with Domaine de Fondrèche goes back a long time - in 1998 the state monopoly had the Cuvée Carles Nadal (as it was called then) and the Cuvée Persia. The Persia was their best cuvée and I always scored it in the 93-94p range.
I bought cases of each and drank them over the following years. Sadly I have none left - it should have been interesting to compare with these new vintages. More info here.
2011 Fayard, Domaine de Fondrèche
The nose is young, fresh and upfront with notes of blueberries, blood, asphalt, black pepper and a touch of bonfire. Opens up fine. After a while there is more herbal notes and a light meaty aroma. Very, very good.
The taste is young, juicy and peppery with notes of lingon- and blueberry bushes, violets, dried herbs and some gravel. A very good acidity. This is very drinkable! Lovely juice! For 17 Euro is just matter of how many cases one need... Made out of 50% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 20% Mourvédre.
89p (tasted 2013/10)
2011 Nadal, Domaine de Fondrèche
The Nadal is a more serious creature, with more depth and concentration on the nose, with gorgeous notes of sweet blueberries, raspberries, allspice, licorice and some more bonfire than in the Fayard. Veal meat and warm tiles. A great nose!
The taste is tight, focused and just beautiful with a stunning acidity and sweet notes of blueberries, allspice, licorice and a warm gravel road. The finish is long and fresh. This will need 3-5 years in the cellar and will surely become even greater in the years to come. This is, so far, the bargain of the year for 22 Euro. Made out of 50% Grenache, 40% Syrah and 10% Mourvédre.
92p (tasted 2013/10)