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The Wines

85-90% Marsanne from clay-limestone soils on Les Bâties (1950s) and Les Pends (1960s) at Mercurol, 10-15% Roussanne, clay-limestone soils, skin contact maceration, fermented, raised 30-40% new, 60-70% 1-year 228-litre oak casks 10-11 months, filtered, 8,500-11,000 b

2018

full yellow; the bouquet is broad, plentiful, has mixed airs that include lemon curd, mango, cigarette ash, white peach stone. The palate takes up the baton via a rich roll of generous content, streams along well with hints of exotic fruits, has the bounty for sauced, butter-based dishes. It finishes with calm roundness, a serene texture, a note of vanilla pod from its oak, which thickens the close. It will be good in a mature, second phase, around 2025. Decant it. 13.5°. 85% Mars, 15% Rouss. €19. 2031-33 Nov 2019

2017 ()

sound yellow colour; the nose shows discreet toasting, alongside a white peach, aniseed-petrol combination. It’s just getting going. The palate bears a cosy richness, is nicely wrapped all together, has a Marsanne tune of nutty apricot, ends on the classic Marsanne tang, near bitter, the length secure. It’s a little subdued in expression. 13.5°. 85% Marsanne, 15% Roussanne. From mid-2019. 2029-31 Dec 2018

2015

full, pronounced yellow colour. The nose is broad, deep, with the strength of the vintage apparent, a flan-honey, crème caramel centre to it. There is a note of aniseed-licorice. The palate comes with sturdy richness, is close-knit, a scaled white Crozes: drink with lobster, monkfish, full flavours. An aniseed or fennel with sea bass would go very well. It finishes firmly, with a glycerol based authority, is muscular wine. Decant this. 2022-23 Oct 2016 GB Fine & Rare Wines £183 12 b i/b www.frw.co.uk customerservice@frw.co.uk +44(0)207 089 7400

2014

shiny, full yellow. Melted butter, lime fruit mix on the first nose, with a little extra peanut density. It is a full start. The palate moves in a smooth, rather stately manner: the gras is lissom and entertaining, suited to turkey, guinea fowl, cheese, poultry. The tang of bitter of the finish is authentically Marsanne, and ensures a fresh close. Decant this. It has the weight for sauced dishes. 13.5°. 8,500 b. 85% Mars, 15% rouss. €14.50 at the cellars. 2021-22  Oct 2015

2013

yellow robe. There is strong oak in the forefront of the nose: it is quite a bulky nose, with stem ginger, and ripe, jelly-like white fruits, apricot, present. The palate is saved by having a rich texture, so the oak doesn’t smash it up. It is very much on the oak now, though, and will not be interesting to drink as a more balanced wine before 2017. It is ponderous because of the ripe cropping and then the use of oak. It can get to 3 stars if left. 14°. 85% Mars, 15% Rouss. 9,000 b. €9.50 export. 2021-22  Jan 2015

2012

attractive yellow. The nose is marked by oak, a strong toasting, a little fluid white fruit behind that. The palate grips tightly, has a steely approach; the stewed white fruits sit in the second tier. This isn’t an ensemble, the aftertaste is stiff. It needs 15 to 18 months to start to fuse, but has gras richness for the future. From mid-2015, best around 2017-2019. 13.5°. 85% Mars, 15% Rouss, 10,000 b, 30% new oak. €9.10 ex cellars. 2021-22  Nov 2013

2011 ()

steady yellow; banana flambé, Grand Marnier soufflé airs on the nose, with mandarin and honey. There is plenty on offer, pineapple and oak prominent. The palate gives a savoury, full, tasty richness, infused herb teas, almond and walnut with a note of flan, crème patisserie and spicing. This amounts to a very replete, varied mix, and provides full, stimulating drinking. Good with salmon in dill sauce – it has enough depth for that. Its attack takes it most of the way, and the finish has some fluid gras. Very good, a wine that deserves belle cuisine. 14°. 2021-23  Nov 2012

2010 ()

quite a full yellow, legs down the glass. Creamy air, with caramel-flan influences, spiced or sizzled banana. There is a sense of oak in its firm width – it is clear, quite stylish and lifted as it breathes. The palate offers hazelnut, off the bat; there is orderly richness with a point of late “burn” on its Marsanne, a roasted signal. It ends freely, though. Not quite there yet. It is more assertive on the attack, has more there than on the finish. Food wine, not solo drinking. Chunky style, up to white meats such as pork. The aftertaste is a nutty, peanut. 14°. 2019-20 Nov 2011

2009 ()

(final assembly, pre-bottle) mild yellow; oaky, raisiny nose, has a padded depth about it, a 2009 intensity. The palate is solid, unyielding, with oak clamping it for now. Has the full, almost sugary nature of the vintage – not necessarily a good thing. Needs food. Decant this, wait till 2011 spring. Can be savoury, even if a shade clumsy – is 14°. To 2016-17. July 2010

2007 ()

full yellow with some gold; a honey and custard duo feature on the nose, with ripe fruit present, a fleshy width, high tone, and my old favourite the Ukrainian white raisins. The palate is fulsome in nature, full by design in the cellar, with richness. There is gutsy Marsanne in it, and it pushes out firmly on the finish where there is power. Ends on a creamy, flan note. Is rather constructed, a little burnt. A flash job with an eye on the market rather than the vineyard. 14°. 2013-14 Dec 2008 Previously Jan 2008 **(*) 1st cask, 100% Marsanne, malo done, white fruit, hazelnut aroma of some grip. Some richness on the palate; this has quite a wide finish. A touch flat right now. 13.5°. 2nd cask – 70% Roussanne, 30% Marsanne, exotic aromas with honey mixed. Fair palate length and richness. 14°. From 2010. 8-9 years. Jan 2008

2006

marked yellow in the robe; there is fair richness within an oak-dominated nose, and there isn`t much else to add to that appraisal, so much is the oak on top. The palate is fairly rich, with the oak up, down and across it. Ends on oak. That darned word is everywhere, my fingers hurt from typing it. The aftertaste is planks. You can only wait until late 2010 and hope its richness holds up under this biff over the head with a barrel. 14°. 2012-14 Jan 2008

2005

quite a firm yellow; brisk, clear bouquet with oak at its core and some smoke. Harmonious, light butter and white plum flavour – flows well and finishes crisply. Intrinsically a rich wine. Oak-banana-melba toast aftertaste. Can evolve. 2013-15 Dec 2006

2004

gold tints. Straight banana aroma - wham! A little petrol sideshow, not much variety to it. The banana continues on the palate, which is quite weighty, and almost burdened by its oak. Brown sugar, creme caramel style finale. Stops short - the oak does that. Formula wine. To 2009-10. June 2006

2003 ()

orange, exotic aromas on pretty broad bouquet. Restrained start, then gains some richness. Spice-oak aftertaste - oak comes on strong. Broad and rich, can work itself into cohesion by 2007. 2013-16

2001

full bouquet, overt oak; full, quite true white fruit taste, some middle richness. Length is OK. Oak props it up, as it fades a little at the end.

2000

decent, quite rich bouquet; fat, chewy wine mixed in with its oak. Good enough.

1999

medium depth, floral and oak combo; oak asserts on palate, some citrus in the middle, needs to be three years old before settling. A light amount of richness. Touch clinical.