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The Wines

40-75% Grenache blanc, 0-30% Bourboulenc, 0-20% Clairette blanche, 0-30% Roussanne (1980) from clay-limestone, sandy soils on Palestor (N) La Bertaude (N-W), hand harvested, 70% steel vat, 30% used oak cask 10-12 day fermentation at 18-20°, raised 4 months (down from 7 months until early 2010s), filtered, before 2010 was called plain Château de Simian, “drink as aperitif, or with scallops in saffron, chicken de Bresse with morilles, lentil soup, creamy or dry Pélardon goat cheese”, organic, biodynamic wine, 2,000-4,000 b

2019

nicely full yellow robe; the bouquet is wide, well rounded, spherical, has saline prompts, tones of the seashore with white plum, tropical fruit notes. It’s a good, secure start. The palate expresses well, gives a tasty, refined and suave run of white fruits, with touches of ginger, tang towards the lip smacking close. The run along the palate is good, with a very correct build in depth just before the close – a full vintage profile with local elegance. It will be great with Vieille France cuisine such as sweetbreads, or Bresse chicken with a morel sauce, quenelle de brochet (pike quenelle), Lyonnaise cuisine. 14°. 2027-28 June 2020

2018

yellow robe; sherbet lemon, apricot airs and a note of citrus lead the nose, which is slightly unsettled. The palate revs up on some immediate gras, fleshy content, holds that pretty well into the lip smacking finish. There is fat in its delivery, and it can therefore go with white meats, for example. It’s not really co-ordinated, so try from mid-2020. 13.5°. 2,900 b. 60% Gren bl, 30% Rouss, 10% Clairette. Bottled Apr 2019. €24. 2028-29 Oct 2019

2017

attractive yellow robe; the noose carries density, has a cooked lemon aroma, a note of greengage and brioche baked bread, infused tea behind. There’s a quietly sunny ripeness in it, very correct for the vintage. The palate is well founded, holds rolling gras richness which reaches out well, the finish sure and complete, showing oak-toffee there. The richness is lip smacking, authentic. Decanting an aid. This is genuine and table friendly Châteauneuf, great with a veal chop in rosemary, for instance. 14°. 2,000 b. 75% Gren bl, 25% Rouss. €23.20. Bottled June 2018. 2030-33 Oct 2018

2016 ()

rather full yellow robe. Tangerine segments, melon, some exotic fruit airs show on the nose, which is fat, has vanilla from oak. The palate presents a broad, plump attack, is immediately tasty, works on smooth texture and willing flavour. There are dried fruits, citrus grip on the aftertaste. This is enjoyable. It’s a tiny bit subdued on the second half. It will be great with spaghetti all vongole (clams), cheese, sauced dishes. It’s a bit low acidity, so drink now until 2022. 14°. To 2022 Dec 201

2014

quite a full yellow, with shine. Pear and peach are the initial fruits on the cosy bouquet, a mild greengage behind. It is an appealing start. The palate is well balanced, and runs calmly, offering a little ginger seasoning in its white stone fruits. The finish is rounded. Good with chicken dishes, soft cheese. There is a tangerine, citrus zest on the aftertaste that brings lift, and the idea of a second sip. I like its freedom. 13°. 4,000 b. €21.60. Bottled Jan 2015. 60% Gren bl, 20% Bourb, 20% Clair. 2021-22  Oct 2015 

2011 ()

shiny, fine yellow, legs. Careful, reserved for now bouquet – a floral, airborne note of fruit such as lime, also peach. There is a soft note of verbena and licorice. The palate picks up a theme of elegant, shapely white fruit that is a little sweet. It tastes well now, a flavour of nectarine and pear fruit compote. Good, typical, modern Châteauneuf blanc with clear fruit, some STGT features. It will gradually evolve. It ends on a little pepper. Suited to dishes such as gambas in sauce, light spicing, scallops or St Jacques. Very good, long wine. Recommended to eat poulet/chicken de Bresse in an écrevisse (crayfish) sauce, a nectarine of langoustines, or goat cheese. 13°. VALUE at €21.10. 2021-22  Dec 2012

2008 ()

pale yellow. Zesty, fresh pineapple, glazed fruits, apricot aroma, possible SO2. Careful white plum flavour on debut, comes with a line of tannin alongside, ends firmly. Brioche fruit, pastry taste, unsalted cashews. To 2015. Nov 2009

2006 No Rating

mild yellow; pongy nose, “high” fruit, a little floral from its Clairette. The palate is also rather oxidative, flat, lacks lift, has a sticky end. The 2nd bottle isn't better – is aggressive. Jan 2008

2004 ()

shiny yellow, a young robe. The aroma is delicate, gives airs of light white fruits, pear – it has a floating, airborne quality. The palate is charming, a mid-weight affair: it tucks into a rounded, elegant finale that holds gras. It drinks well now, pretty close to its summit. It is serene more than nuanced. 13.5°. 2016-17  Oct 2013