In 1941, Lulu and Lucien Peyraud put Bandol on the AOC map by petitioning for official recognition. Today, Domaine Tempier is perhaps more synonymous with its appellation than any domaine in France. While there's a push each year to get the new vintage of their rosé on the market to quench the ever-increasing thirst of summer's appetite, the best of Tempier's rosé is always yet to come through bottle development.

Domaine Tempier's rosé blend is 55% Mourvèdre, 25% Grenache, and 20% Cinsault, planted on limestone and clay soils above the Mediterranean Coast. The secret to this highly coveted pink is its ability to transform over time while holding onto that critical freshness. Visiting the domaine in July 2016 proved these back-vintage rosés and reds deserve their place among France's most cherished estates.

The red wines are all Mourvèdre-based blended with Grenache, Cinsault, and Syrah. La Tourtine sits above Cabassaou and receives the most cooling influences from the famous Mistral wind that barrels down from the north. Among French wines that transform with age, I'd put Tempier among the top names. In their youth, the single-vineyard cuvées are very tannic and structured; though, they soften with time, with their ripe fruit remaining perfectly intact. Bottles going back to the early '80s remain immensely concentrated in their primary red and black fruit qualities.

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