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The Wines

Syrah 50% from sandy granite on Pitrou at St-Jean-de-Muzols (1940s-1950s Syrah) and 50% from hard granite, quartz, red clay, alluvial stones on Les Champs at Tournon (1960s Syrah), sandy granite at Vion, whole bunch fermentation, pumping overs, aged used 600-litre oak 10-12 months, unfined, unfiltered

2018 ()

dark red colour. The nose is rather closed, but bears promise, is savoury, with cherry fruit, a ripe gleam to it. The palate leads off on bold fruit with Southern notions, comes with fat even, close packing, is definitely a high sunshine wine. It develops firm tannins, and ends in compact fashion. It holds the vintage packing and strength of the sun. There are munchy late moments, density - it's a knife and fork style of wine. Decant it. From late-2021. 2036-38 Nov 2019

2017

attractive robe, a shiny quite full red it is. The nose is just starting to express fruit, raspberry, with iodine, rocks, wax, a hint of red meat. It’s enclosed for now. There is a hint of acetate on the palate; raspberry fruit streams along with fresh purpose, washes well into a fluid close, on the up. The length is good – this has pep, energy on the second half. The juice is really good, even delightful here. I can ignore the acetate. This is wine for the informed drinkers. “It’s very full, fresh, a belle surprise. A few small rains just before the harvest cut the impact of the heat,” François Ribo. Bottled end Aug 2018. 2034-36 Nov 2018

2014

dark red robe. Flowers and cloves, Pez sweets give their display on the nose, with low-key pepper, raspberry and a little red meat. This swings along well, delivers direct red fruit with crunch in the tannins, and good length based on overt freshness. Tar and prune come forward on the close. This is peppy, direct, a bit demanding now, and needs to ease its finish. From late 2016. 12.5°. 2021-22 Dec 2015

2010 ()

clear, beau red robe. Has a spice-forward nose, with racy, perhaps a bit of volatile acidity fruit in here – has a free air overall. This has a get on and drink palate – excellent Syrah in its really natural state. It kicks on after half way, runs freely with some firmness that leans towards acetate at the end. I would eat foods that are clear, not sauced, with this. Vegetarian pasta good, sausages. 12.5°. To 2025-27 March 2012

2009 ()

cask 1 (used 600-litre oak cask, 1940s-1950s Syrah from Pitrou, St-Jean-de-Muzols) ***(*) bright, purple-dark red robe; the nose offers red berry fruit with a curve of restraint around it, a snap, a cooked bacon effect. The palate black berry fruit is clear, and has a juicy, appealing run, with well-ordered late tannins, a fresh sign-off. 12 years. From 2011. cask 2 (used 600-litre oak cask, 1960s Syrah from Les Champs, Tournon) *** purple robe; glinting, smoky, crisp nose; wrapped up black fruit, with a gradual gain in tannic poise on the palate. Good structure in this – it means a fine black fruit with grain in it. 14 years. OVERALL ***(*) 2022-24 Nov 2009

2008

(tank, to be bottled in four days) mauve tints in quite a dark red robe; coherent black fruits, blackberry aroma – there is a nice soft roundness about it, and a breeze of licorice. There is good cut in the palate blackberry fruit, which expands quietly across the glass, and persists well. It is a tiny bit dry at the finish – granite effect, or vintage? The primary blackberry fruit is appealing here – really good and fresh. Drink solo for the cool crowd, or grilled foods. To 2014. Nov 2009

2003 ()

(cask) pretty bouquet - violets and clearly defined black fruits. Grapey flavour combines with white pepper, then tannins on finish. Compact, with licorice to round off. Length good. Esp 2006. Shorter than usual vinification to avoid any hard aspects this year. 2014-16

2002 ()

fair robe; cassis leaf, laurel, minted aspects on mid-weight bouquet. Peppery flavour - direct. Has some end tannin. Agreeable lunch wine. Some end tannin. Late 2004 on. 2009-10

2001 ()

oily, black fruit/leather aromas; fresh cut of black fruits, well-knit, peppery; liquorice, bit dry end. Tails off a bit, esp 2004 on. 2012-14