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The Wines

30-40% Clairette blanche, 15-30% Bourboulenc, 25-30% Roussanne, 10-14% Grenache blanc, 0-3% Clairette rose, 1% Picardan, 1% Picpoul blanc, mainly from Montalivet (N-E), Palestor (N), Les Cabanes (S-E), Chemin de Sorgues (S-E), Roussanne fermented, raised 1-year oak casks, rest fermented, raised steel vat 7 months, weekly lees stirring in the oak, malo blocked, 8-9,500 b

2017

fine yellow colour; infused herbal tea, camomile with a note of honey on the well varied nose. There are white plum, spice and peach airs, and it carries local ID. The palate offers a good roll of spiced white fruits, is fine, before picking up intensity as it goes, peach fruit with a good, juicy heart. The finish expresses spearmint, aniseed, is a great asset for its drinkability. 14°. 7,800 b. 40% Clair bl, 30% Rouss, 15% Bourb, 10% Gren bl, 3% Clair rose, 1% Picardan, 1% Picpoul bl. €26. Bottled March 2018. 2029-31 Oct  2018

2016 ()

very pale yellow, more flinty than yellow. Has a floral, mandarin aroma, neat tangerine, soft pear. The nose is graceful if a touch neutral. The palate is tight, skimmy, has a fashionable restraint, a flavour of white plum, light pear, a little burst of liquid honey on the finish. It carries a streamlined freshness, near spearmint, on the close. It can develop as it evolves, gain gras richness. This is New Wave Châteauneuf blanc, better with steamed over sauced dishes. 14°. 2025-26 Christmas Day, Dec 2017

2015

yellow robe. Light airs of roasted nuts combine with peach, greengage, a little apricot on the nose. It’s deep, in the 2015 vein, shows some aniseed. The palate is muscular, holds tightly packed content with a tannic firmness towards the finish. A traditional style of white Châteauneuf for la table, good with sauced dishes, quite robust dishes. It ends on a note of liquid honey and a note of tannin. The length is good and assured, touches freshness. Interesting wine. Decanting good. 13.5°. 9,500 b. 2027-29 Sept 2016

2014 ()

yellow robe. The nose has a good, airborne quality, combines notes of aniseed and white fruits, the aniseed perhaps from the Clairette. It can develop. The palate runs with commendable freshness, a cooked white fruits flavour at its heart, and has enough elegance to serve as an aperitif wine. There is appealing detail here. “It is round and fresh. I am content with it,” Thiérry Sabon. 2021-22  Oct 2015

2013 ()

rather pale yellow. This has a low-key nose that shows a little sweetness in a cooked apple aroma, presents a small nugget of ripeness, a light roasted nut and floral note. This is light, orderly, a little brief, as if it achieves freshness at the expense of depth. It ends on a linden (tilleul), aniseed note, marzipan, shows a little southern depth there. A live line of gentle acidity runs through it. Suited to the aperitif and salmon-cod fishcakes, which bring in a salted exit. It has delicate qualities, is a light Châteaeuneuf white. The length is quiet, stealthy. 13.5°. 2020-22  March 2015 Previously Oct 2014 **** translucent robe. Breezy citrus-pear aroma – the nose has lots of zip and freshness. The palate offers some sweetness on the attack, is poised and bears good fruit; this has a lively constitution. The acidity is good, and the finish zesty. Perfect as an aperitif or with food. 13.5°. 2024-26 JL Oct 2014

2012

pale robe, yellow and wee green tints in it, is inviting. Has a clear, harmonious nose of some elegance – lemon and lime show, with gras behind, a good, subtle combination completed by dabs of spiced and infused herbs teas. The palate is a good reflection of the nose – it is very fresh, has clarity in its flavour, makes no big demands on the palate. It is still reserved on the finish vis-à-vis its fruit and éclat, radiance. Both its acidity and vivacity are good, the balance, too. The aftertaste involves aniseed and cooked pear – it is interesting, and sets up the palate for another glass. 14°. 2023-25  Oct 2013

2011 ()

legs, light yellow colour. Wax, varnish air, pear drop sweets in the second layer, along with a caramel-nut presence. The palate starts quietly, as if withdrawing after a more open stage: has a flavour of jam, a coulis of apricot and peach appearing in the late stages, also a sign of a little evolution. Steady, genuine, classic Châteauneuf-du-Pape blanc, no fireworks, but sound quality, better with foods than solo – pastas etc. Decant this. 13.8°. VALUE at €18, 9,500 b this year. 2019-20  Dec 2012

2010

pale yellow; pear, pear drop sweets aroma with a fine line of hazelnut. A hint of acetate also in some peach and vanilla. The palate is enclosed, rather tight – shows no significant features for now. Brioche, baked notes on the finish: it is not long on obvious fruit, but there is honeyed gras on the aftertaste – not a lot, but provides hope. Needs foods. Decant this. From mid-2012. 14°. €18 at the cellars. 2021-23 Dec 2011

2009 ()

mild yellow; measured nose – spice, dust, the aroma veers towards hazelnut. The palate is attractive – the flavour emphasizes dried white fruits, and lengthens well. It has substance to the finish. Alongside the fruit are baked brioche, barley sugar notes. It grips on the finish, has a slightly dry aftertaste. Best with food. 2017-18. Oct 2011

2008

glinting, light yellow, legs down the glass. Round, apricot, light honey aroma, also bonbon sweets. The palate is rather tough, not yet settled. It has a firm side to it, is punchy. The nose is more inviting than the palate – less assertive. There are pockets of vanilla and greengage in the flavour, and some alcohol within. From mid-2010. Decant this. 2018-19 Dec 2009

2007 ()

pale robe; has a zesty, white fruits nose but with some SO2 that gets in the way. After a good shake of the bottle, it clarifies and shows plum white fruits, a little pear, and is more supple and bound together. The palate leads with honeycomb, nice hazelnut – it has wide shoulders, good pecs. A good, authentic white Châteauneuf of some robustness. Drink with food – not aperitif - and stronger flavours such as white meats would go well with it. Double decant it, or shake it about before drinking. 2021-22 Nov 2008

2005 ()

aroma of baked tart, white grapes, is quietly stylish though a little hidden now. A solid, reserved palate with latent power and good length. Needs time to blossom – eg drink from mid-2007. Promising if left to evolve, take shape. 2014-15 Dec 2006

2004 ()

subdued, white fruits aroma, with a honeysuckle and also salty imprint. Attack is citrus, has a chewy middle. Bit burnt towards finish, shortens up a little.

1995 ()

mostly Gren bl, Roussanne, a bit of Bourboulenc, Clairette: mild yellow. The nose has stone fruits in the air, the potential to develop, is nicely worked. Enjoyable palate fruit led by white stone fruits such as peach, plum, a nutty note adding tang. The finish is complete, clear. As Jean-Claude states, this has improved. “The Roussanne has helped us to make this better white wine now – there has been a great improvement, the Roussanne influence starting from about 1994. This is bottled in January after the harvest.,” Jean-Claude Sabon. Oct 1996