Chatons de Garde, Andrea Calek (Rhone, France)

Andrea is one of the wandering hippies from out of town, that we eluded to earlier. He came to Ardeche in the late 80s after defecting from the Czech Army during the Velvet Revolution and found himself in the excellent hands of the Oustric family, some of the forward thinking locals also mentioned. This is 100% Syrah from a single vineyard with 30-70 year old vines, partial carbonic fermentation in fiberglass vat, then pressed off and aged for a year in old Burgundy barrels, then bottled unfiltered with no sulfur added. Wildly aromatic with smokey, meaty dark fruit and plenty of earthy funk. Decant this one for an hour or so and you will be handsomely rewarded. This is drinking so beautifully right now.