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  • Writer's pictureJohn Paul Kaminga

Moonchild: Saladin Fan de Lune 2019

From the winery: “Fan de Lune” means ‘child of the moon’ in local patois and is used to express surprise. The wine was named in remembrance of two surprises experienced by the family in the late 1970’s; the new appellation of the Côtes du Rhône Villages ‘terroirs’ in St Marcel d’ Ardèche and the birth of girls, Marie-Laurence and Elisabeth!

We always carry a wine or two from Domaine Saladin. Their wines speak so clearly of the Rhone valley, yet they also stand apart. Rhone wines often push the boundaries of ripeness and power, featuring lots of jammy and dried fruit notes, and high levels of alcohol. Saladin's wines are among the most lively and elegant Rhones we've ever tasted, but they still pack dense fruits flavors as well as beautiful herbal and savory tones. We recommend them often, and they have found many fans at Craft and Cru.

The Saladin family's vineyards have always been organic, and they can trace their roots on their land back to 1422! Today they are certified organic (Ecocert), and sisters Marie-Laurence and Elisabeth run the show. In the winery, intervention is kept to a minimum, with no additions to the grapes except minimal sulfur at bottling. The wines are aged in cement or large neutral oak foudres, and bottled when fruit flavors and terroir signatures are clear. We think that their wines are brilliant and should be counted among the elite of the region.

Fan de Lune is perhaps the most distinctive wine chez Saladin. It is mostly Mourvedre and the Saladins are quite far north in the region to be making a wine focused on this most southern of grapes. Mourvedre requires sun, heat and a long growing season, lest it make a rough, green and difficult wine. Fan de Lune's Mourvedre base is tempered by fruity Grenache and suave Syrah, and the 2019 vintage of this wine is one of the most interesting Rhone wines I've ever tasted. Elegant and lively, full of fresh fruit and herbal nuance, it should have wide appeal, but I think it might be a huge surprise for those who love Pinot Noir.

Domaine Saladin Cote du Rhone Villages 'Fan de Lune' 2019 - $30

Strawberry, cherry, blood orange, rusty iron, pine forest, resinous herbs, a touch of roses and roasted meat. Poised and lively, this is incredibly elegant for a Mourvedre-dominant wine, only medium in body with easy tannins, just a little grip, and a precise acid line. Gorgeous juiciness through the finish, with pleasantly bitter citrus pith and wild herb nuance lingering long. The purity of fruit is astounding. This is Mourvedre for connoisseurs of Pinot. The soeurs Saladin have done it again. Brilliant stuff that should be worth following at least another 5 years.

We have about 2 cases of 2019 Fan de Lune in stock now, but more will be coming from France, hopefully before the end of the year. We encourage you to try a bottle now, and order more after you discover how delicious it is. Please email to place orders or ask questions. As usual, this wine will mix with other wines for our quantity discounts: 10% off 6 bottles, or 12% off 12+ bottles.


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