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The Wines

50% Grenache blanc (1940s, 1950s), 50% Roussanne from clay-limestone, galet stone soils on La Petite Bastide, La Grenade (S-E), co-fermented at 18°-20°C part in concrete vat, part in 3-year oak casks, concrete vat raised 8 months, lees stirred, malo blocked, “drink with “fish in sauce, white meat à la crème”, first wine 2005, 1,600-2,500 b

2018

ample yellow robe; the nose is lusty, broad, vigorous, gives exotic fruits, guava, mango to the fore. The palate continues that theme, is well seasoned with generous gras richness, and an appealingly squeezy texture. It is definitely suited to sauced dishes, Asian cuisine, can marry strong table flavours well. It ends with a shapely roundness, and a glint of freshness on the close. It will be great, varied, when in its second phase. 13.5°. 2,500 b. 50% Gren bl, 50% Rouss. Bottled June 2019. €29. 2030-32 Oct 2019

2017

full, shiny quite full yellow. Butterscotch, lemon curd richness on the nose, which is weighty. The palate likewise is a slow-moving affair, has an orb of generosity, a full grapiness. It ends smoothly, roundly. Very much a table wine, good with veal in rosemary, white meats, wild mushroom risotto, for example. It’s nice and complete. Decanting advised. 14°. 2,500 b. €27. 50% Gren bl, 50% Rouss. Bottled June 2018. 2024-26 Oct 2018

2016 ()

yellow robe. The nose is tight, nutty from oak, with a spritely greengage plum, white plum air, a delicate spicing. It also includes a little fennel, brioche bread, a hint of tangerine. The palate is knuckled on the attack, also tight, has inner fat. It runs pretty solidly, the finish broad, almost square. It has a southern, slightly dour nature, the flavour expression low-key, and will benefit from time and decanting. This is table, not aperitif wine. The texture is suave. It responds well to food, braised chicken with roasted vegetables, and perks up with that. From 2018. 2028-30 July 2017

2015 ()

firm yellow colour. The nose is weighty, close-knit, suggests some white Mirabelle plum fruit, a light air of white strawberry and aniseed. The palate has a candy style debut, comes with a cooked white fruits flavour that has a citrus leaning. It’s modern, a little distant for now. I would leave it until 2018, and decant it. 13.5°. 2,100 b. 2024-25 Sept 2016

2014

steady yellow colour. Peach, ripe nectarine aroma on the nose, a note of mango, the exotic. It combines depth and clarity. The palate carries smoky white fruits, with sound freshness. The wine is open, and has the body to go with trout, salmon, goat cheese, Brebis, for example. The aftertaste is nice and juicy, long. Good and true wine. 13.5°. 1,400 b. €25. Bottled Apr 2015. 2024-26  Oct 2015 

2013

yellow robe. Aromatic mandarin-citrus nose, has a ripe spectrum that brings in almost a touch of marmalade here. Palate is rich and full, the mandarin-marmalade aspect retained. Lots of glycerol and gras richness which is balanced by the zesty nature of the fruit. Needs food and probably a couple of years in bottle. From late 2015. 14°. 2024-26 JL Oct 2014

2012 ()

(casks) yellow robe; exotic fruits, guava, passion fruit, mango present. There is nearly a late harvested Riesling petrol air, reminds me of styling from 15 years ago, low temperature and oak, with Roussanne (tasted blind). The palate has a banana flambé flavour, verbena, apricot and nectarine; oak runs all through it. Has a candy, glazed fruits late burst. There is the fat of Châteauneuf in this, but it is hard to place as Châteauneuf. It can revert to its roots if left for five to six years, by when the oak will be less, the sense of place more. A wine for sauced flavours, chicken in grapes, guinea fowl, for instance. Its fat will be enjoyable in time. From 2017-18, for example. 13.5°. 2024-26  Oct 2013

2011 ()

(bottling this month) quite yellow robe; the nose mixes peach and apricot, with a backdrop of banana, lime, light peanut, earthiness also, almost boiled potatoes. The palate has a gras, oiled texture, a plump centre. The fat is without excess – this is a wine intended for shorter-term drinking on that characteristic. Suited to guinea fowl, chicken with sauces. It is a little forced, holds up well with some tarry, heated notes. 13.5°. €23. 2018-19  Dec 2012

2010 ()

fair yellow robe; soaked white plums and pineapple chunks air to the nose, along with peach – it is generously fruited here, and has an almost barley sugar aspect. The palate is also centred on fleshy white fruits, even banana, with greengage plum and vanilla pod flavours late on. It moves on texture and its richness is up to local, garlic-connected flavours. There is a mild note of spice, perhaps saffron, as well in it. 13.5°. 2022-24 Dec 2011

2009 ()

yellow robe, shine and youth. Has a “high” style nose, both on reduction and oxidation, a compote of white fruits with gras/sun at its centre, vanilla pod from oak, white plum. There is a sense of cheese. It gains clarity/cut with air. The palate presents dried fruits, exotic fruits, mango, with again some oxidation, the finish nutty and just a bit heated. This shows the vintage pretty much full on. It doesn’t run as long on its flavour as it could. It needs decanting. It loosens, and gains fineness as it breathes. It is a sturdy, grounded Châteauneuf blanc with oiliness in its texture, will sit well with Escoffier, sauced dishes. Day 2: it is oxidative on the palate, tight, very vanilla, and isn’t a vineyard wine as it stands. 2023-25 Aug 2017 Previously Dec 2011 **** fine yellow, wee green tints. The nose is fresh, broad – pear, apple tart, is weighty and shows honey and oak together. The palate has body and a fine style, is a wine suited to la table. There is a hint of oak in with its pineapple-dried fruits flavour, which is tracked by a spiced, pepper, curry powder exit. There are lip smacking moments thanks to its ripeness of the crop, and it also retains freshness at the end. Just closing down a shade now; good wine. 2022-23 Dec 2011

2008

bright, flinty, green tinted robe. Soft aroma – offers attractive sweetness, supple bonbon sweet airs, some honey. The palate has an overt custard or flan taste on the attack, with the ripeness well implanted. A creamy style Châteauneuf white suited to sauced dishes, fish in sauce. A small late grip comes in, a tiny point of bitter. Is right out there already, but can live, - has glycerol. 2019-21 Nov 2009

2007 ()

modest yellow; friendly, lightly buttery aroma laced with bonny apricot, ripe peach, overt cooked banana – this is harmonious. The palate starts on a buttery note, vanilla in the flavour – there is oak present on a restrained scale, but air will no doubt bring it forward. A carefully made, elegant wine of good length and potential. There is a late tinkle of acidity and freshness. Its heart is supple, and while it is not especially robust, it is refined. Can meld further – from late 2010 for less oak on the second half of the palate. 2019-22 Nov 2008

2006

honey, toast and pineapple mingle with a nice, white plum aroma: the bouquet has good style, its oak has been well handled. The palate has a rich, buttery start, and the oak lines it up to keep it at a little distance – there is nothing too imposing. Has a gracious, nice fresh pocket towards the finish. It is OK to drink vis-à-vis the oak now, but will be better still from spring 2008. Has a damp white fruits aftertaste, with some southern sap. 2017-20 Oct 2007

2005 ()

becoming noticeably yellow; the bouquet mixes dust with a clear mineral air, also wax and high tone: it is on the march, is changing and evolving – air brings honey, breezy lime, vanilla pod. Baled bread, brioche, apricot flavours – ends on a honeyed, pear note. This is brilliant with Roquefort cheese. Very varied, is good and rich now. Goes through a flat spot after 45 minutes. 13.5°. 2018-20 Nov 2009 Previously Feb 2007 ***(*) pale robe; buttery, soft nose with a little floating spice – spice and white fruits. Rounded shape to palate, starts with some stone fruit. There is an apricot-peach fruit skin element in the flavour. A wine with bite and guts, and ends with a flourish of power. Nose is more settled than the palate, and oak emerges after one hour. A little heady for aperitif – go for food, softly flavoured dishes. From mid-late 2008 for more oak absorption, but the oak has been well handled. 14° 2016-19 Feb 2007