I was interested to try this. I love the wines of Alain Graillot from Croze-Hermitage, but here he’s working with a much warmer climate in north Africa.
The warmth of the climate shows itself in the ripe, sweet fruit flavours. This is certainly not northern Rhone Syrah. But there’s more here than just sweet fruit: there’s definitely some old world character. In fact, tasted blind I might well have put this in Chateauneuf du Pape.
Initially I liked it, but didn’t love it. Some of the fruit characters teetered towards caramel and raisin. But coming back to it on days 2 and 3 it seemed to gain in interest, which makes me think it’s quite serious.
Domaine des Ouled Thaleb Tandem Syrah du Maroc Alain Graillot/Thalvin 2009 Morocco
13% alcohol. Rich and ripe with a subtly baked, raisiny undertone to the sweet berry and cherry fruits, and some earthy, spicy hints. Nice savoury meatiness and good acidity. Some freshness alongside the rich, warm, spicy flavours. Odd but enjoyable. 88/100 (£11.50 The Wine Society)