Although famed for its red wines, white wines have a long heritage in the southern Rhône valley, where the locals enjoy an occasional glass at the start of a warm evening. La Fleur Solitaire is therefore a solitaire amongst the rubies of the Boutinot Rhône range; a white Côtes du Rhône made from traditional southern Rhône white grape varieties.
Following an experiment with a micro cuvée crafted from seven barrels back in 2009, they now source grapes from selected vineyards in the southern Rhône. Each parcel is picked separately in the cooler early daylight hours for gentle pressing that same morning, and each is fermented at a low temperature. To a base of Grenache Blanc, they blend Viognier along with co-fermented pairs of Roussanne/Marsanne and Bourboulenc/Clairette. Over the years they have increased the proportion vinified in stainless steel, with just under a third of the wine now vinified and matured for 6 months French oak barrels (mostly 3rd fill but some new) to add complexity and creaminess.
Proper white Côtes du Rhône; fresh, medium-bodied, vinous. The nose is pretty and delicate, with a waft of fennel tops and hints of hedgerow flowers. The flavours are nuanced and refined rather than overt. Careful use of oak adds texture and structure without masking the freshness of this very drinkable white.