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The Wines

from St-Michel (2 plots at Poncin, La Rouillère, La Cartherie next to Château Grillet, very pure sand, a lot of mica, clay couch at 50cm-3 metres down just before the granite rock), (until late 2000s up to 15% noble rot crop included) fermented, raised 35-40% new, 60-65% 3-5 year 228-litre oak casks 11 months, 8,500-15,000 b

2017

pale yellow; greengage-pear airs along with aniseed, a wee floral note appear in a nicely nuanced nose – it’s an appealing start. The start to the palate is mild, gives soft content with supple gras, continues with some detail, precision, until a more powered close. The flavour involves white fruits including peach, banana. The palate isn’t quite yet all as one, so leave until spring 2019. It has style and promise. 14°. To 2026 or so. GB £395 per 12 b i/bond H2Vin quintessentially@h2vin.co.uk +44(0)203 073 6655 Nov 2018

2015 ()

shiny yellow. Cooked pear is the lead aroma on the nose, with a little honeysuckle, aniseed below, and a hint of oak. The palate is close-knit, compact, has a fat richness, with drive in its late stages from the sheer weight of the wine. The flavour carries some apricot, ripe nectarine. It closes with a sure hand, a sound grip. The length is assured. Decant it. 2021-22 Oct 2016

2014 ()

pale yellow. Apricot, peach airs with notes of lavender on the nose, a slight oiliness – the nose is pretty much airborne, has fair width. The palate suggests a little Condrieu gras richness on the attack, the first and only one of his three 2014 Condrieus to do that. The flavour centres on stewed pear and vanilla. There is quiet grip. 14°. To 2019 GB £335 12b i/b H2Vin www.H2Vin.co.uk orders@H2Vin.co.uk GB £148/6 bots in bond The Wine Society +441438 740 222 www.thewinesociety.com Nov 2015

2013

yellow robe, legs. Roasted almonds, oak, aniseed-mineral aromas combine on the nose, a fragrant air of peach as well. This has a nutty debut, the flavour on spice, oak, stewed fruits. The length is sound – it finishes in compact fashion. Correct+. There is a white raisin, small gras richness sign-off. Has just tucked into itself since last tasted, will show more in time, by 2016. 13.5°. €39.25 at the cellars. 11,500 b. 2019-20 GB £163/6 bots in bond The Wine Society +441438 740 222 www.thewinesociety.com Jan 2015 Previously Nov 2014 **** pale; there is an air of quiet gras, rich substance at the centre of the bouquet – so aromas of flan, slight banana are present, with white tobacco and smoke as well. The palate bears a restrained gras, has juicy edges, is stylish – this is a bonny Viognier from Condrieu. The flavour resembles white stone fruits, while a little grip and a minor note of tannin, with aniseed, come through at the end. Has decent balance, too. 13.5°. To 2019. £320 12b i/b H2Vin www.H2Vin.co.uk orders@H2Vin.co.uk  Nov 2014

2012 ()

pale yellow; low-key, mildly aromatic bouquet – peach, soft white fruits, wild strawberries, is curvy in shape. This is a compact nugget of Condrieu; it plays the more mineral card, ends on a note of iron. The knuckle on the finish is grippy, rather pebbly. Take your time with this. It gives fresh, citrus after-notes. From mid-2014. 13.1°. 2019-20. £290 12 b in bond GB, H2Vin.  Nov 2013

2011

yellow robe, legs visible. The nose isn’t easy to grasp straight away – there is a sense of high fruit, damp matter, a combo of nectarine and white plum, with uncut tobacco. The palate presents a wide scape of nearly chewy richness; it starts on busy white fruits, stone fruits. The aftertaste is smoky, has a peach coulis flavour. It aims for freshness, isn’t really concentrated or all together. There are tangy moments on the palate, and it can live. 13°. To 2018  Nov 2013  Previously Nov 2012 **(*) yellow. Oak-butter, obviously fat aroma with peanut paste and light nut involved; there is wax and apricot jam, and cooked banana rolls prominently across it. This has a fat-textured attack – the grapes were very ripe this year; it lacks close definition as a result. There is a small note of late grain. This is rather obvious, plain, down the line Condrieu. Best suited to food. Pineapple and guava, exotic fruits show on the aftertaste. It fades late on, and is unconvincing. 13°. 2016-17  Nov 2012

2010

level yellow robe; flan, brioche, broad air – a fine bouquet of some style, shows smoky hazelnut. The palate has a locked-in elegance and reserve. A wine for the future – high quality. Its texture is serene, its white fruits discreet for now, leaving room for imagination. Has a tannic touch on its firm handshake end; there are notes of mandarin and bergamot from Sicily in the mid-late palate. Good balance. Decant this. From 2013. 14°. 2020-21 Dec 2011

2009 ()

mild yellow. Vanilla air, light almond, with a spice trim on the bouquet – latent depth and width here. Sympa roundness on the attack which presents conservative gras. It amplifies well, but is a bit hemmed in, then tight at the finish. Decant this, and another nine months would help – from early 2012. Shows tannic late moments and grip. “Very classic,” F. Villard. To 2018. March 2011 Previously July 2010 *** the colour is like a pale rosé. Candy aroma, quince jam with a little floral, peony air, also Viognier pear. The palate has a red wine construction – it is tight knit, the length is steady, broad, and not overdone at the finish. I am not quite sure what I am tasting (tasted blind) – it is out of the Condrieu loop; there are pear touches on the palate, the nearest one gets to Condrieu as it is usually is. The main flavour is quince. 2014-16 July 2010

2008 ()

yellow robe; interesting nose, with good, quietly brooding depth – it shows peach and apricot, dried fruits and honey. The palate is wide and well filled – this has a good “feet on the ground” nature. Of all Frankie`s wines, it possesses the most heart, and has a red wine structure. It is nicely solid, and is a real fine example of a keeping Condrieu. A serious wine with potential complexity to come. It ends calmly, with no excess pushing, its balance is on the mark. 2023-25. “I give it 15 to 20 years – its minerality will mount,” F.Villard. Nov 2009

2006 ()

steady yellow robe; low-key aroma – a little pear. Come on, where are you? Travels across the glass a little. The palate has a mild flavour, some flan and dried apricot. A smattering of honey precedes them. Ends on a rather burnt note, like many Condrieus this year, and serves up a rather sharp, pointed finale, with some content around it. To 2010. Jan 2008

2005 ()

yellow robe; clean-cut, mineral-toned nose which is on its reserve now – maybe has some pear skin, honey and a butter-lime tang. The palate texture is smooth and welcoming, has a delightful smooth-sided run through the palate. Is a bit dumb, expect more expression from mid to autumn 2007. Compact all though, a big wine in character, a real texture wine. Beau Vin. 13.5°. To 2012. Nov 2006

2004

yellow robe. Elegant, pear-toned aroma, with flan, crème patisserie and some spice to lift it - great style. Nicely lithe, elegant texture, round and appealing. Crème patisserie comes through again, this drinks smoothly. Very well knit, lovely early drinking, can do the business as an aperitif. Delivers here and now, Beau Vin. April 2006

2003

full robe; overtly fat, unctuous bouquet. Likeable, broad wine, full and enveloped by its richness. Good melted butter, butterscotch flavour with a kick from apricot, orange fruits. Can vary with age. 2009-10

2002 ()

gold-tinted robe; the nose is well rounded – it is elegant, prolonged, has a classic Viognier air of pear skin. The palate is also refined, lengthens very well, the acidity good. No frills, sideshows Condrieu. The fruit is quite ripe in style. This is still in good form. 2010-11  Oct 2007, Copenhagen  Previously **(*) (cask) elegant, live, pear nose; three-quarter weight, elegant, stops a little. Can charm, from 2005-06.

2001 ()

sappy, open, generous broad pear aroma; fleshy pear/apricot attack. Nutty/oak and pineapple end. Tightens up, needs time. From mid-2004. Can run on.

1996