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The Wines

50% 1989 Syrah, 50% 1950s Syrah from small gravel granite soils above kaolin soils at 220-250 metres on Pé du Loup at Larnage (northern sector, windy), whole bunch fermentation, aged used 600-litre oak cask 12 months, unfined, unfiltered, “the tannins are always quite marked, rustic from the altitude, very frank Syrah here”, made in 2007, 2011, 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019, not every year, 800 b

2019 ()

(used 600-litre cask) dark red; there is a good line of black cherry fruit beyond reduction on the nose, a clear definition, a nice and brambly tone to it. The attack is vigorous, right off the blocks it goes, with menthol, a lot of nerve, black cherries, cocoa. There is iron-blood in it, the close solid, serious, the fruit purity good. “It’s the last plot harvested – we feared it would be cooked, but not so,” François Ribo. 2033-35 Nov 2019

2017 ()

healthy robe, purple, red, black tints. Black fruits, cherry, feature with bacon, pepper, tobacco on a nose that isn’t yet fully out. Black olives also show, with the fruit not in the front rank. The palate has a cool, relatively delicate attack, black fruits with size in the tannins that arrive rather suddenly. It needs to fuse, there’s work to do. There’s a chewy intensity in a rocky finish. Decant it. From 2021. 2033-35 Nov 2018

2015

(used 600-litre oak cask, racked this afternoon) this may be made on its own this year, the first since 2011. very dark mauve and purple robe. The nose is reserved, has good potential, airs of dark berries, violets. The attack here is good and direct; this is muscular wine, comes with hidden strength, and fine, aromatic tannins, black cherry flavouring. It isn’t an evident wine, and will come gradually forward. The finish is neat. This is fine, and interesting. 11 years. Dec 2015

 

2007 ()

dark robe, mix of purple and black. Smoky bacon, blackberry, candy aroma – it is natural, not got up, shows high tone, volatile also. The palate delivers blackberry and cassis, peppered fruit with fine grip and a little reserve. It keeps going, has slightly burnt edges or “dark” zones, and ends on a reserved note. The nerve in this beckons the hill of Hermitage over the other side of the slope – there is steely black fruit with good grain – very typical Northern Rhône Syrah fruit on the palate – the west bank, not the east, ie St Jo, not Crozes in style. Good now, a wine of good style, is w.o.w. wine. To 2014. Nov 2009