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The Wines

50-70% 1980s Grenache, 30-50% 1980s Syrah from Les Brusquières (N-W), destemmed, Grenache oak vat fermented then raised 80% tronconic oak vat, 15% steel vat, 5% 600-litrre oak casks 8 months (until mid-2010s raised large barrel 8 months), Syrah fermented and raised in oak vats 8 months, then assembled wine vat raised 6 more months, unfined, filtered, 7-18,000 b

2018

(oak vat, steel vat/casks) quite a dark red; there is incipient power on the nose, herbs, warm stones, red cherry, liqueur fruit, is a real Southern child. There is a muscular drumbeat of strength on the palate. It’s raw goods, with plenty of heart. The tannins are marked, thick. Decant it. From 2023-24. 2045-47 Nov 2019

2017

(casks/tronconic vat, bottling Nov 2018) dark Victoria plum red robe; the bouquet is quiet, but replete with a thick layer of plum fruit, a drift of spicing. There’s a red meat, blood connection in back. The palate is rich, well-filled, a solid sunshine affair, with stewed red stone fruit flavours, and a gain in overt power just on the close. It’s pretty well assembled and coherent, expresses its Grenache well, has ground strength. 16°. 7,000 b. 60% Gren, 40% Syr. From 2022. 2040-42 Oct 2018

2016 ()

(oak vat, steel vat/casks) quite a bright dark red colour. The nose is on a stream of implicit power, shows liqueur red fruit, raspberry with a sure depth. The palate is plushly textured, carries a bold Grenache heart with a big fill of fruit near the stone. The tannins wrap closely around it. We are in sipping country here, the finish glowing with its sunswept strength. This is a tricky wine vis-à-vis its balance. The aftertaste is rather compressed, baked, for now. 16°. 10,000 b. 60% Gren, 40% Syr. From 2020-21. 2039-42 Oct 2017

2015 ()

steady red robe. The nose has a quiet air of black olives, prune, a little saltiness and raspberry fruit. The palate is compact, holds smoky black fruit with crisp tannins lined up. There is a note of iodine towards the pebbly finish. It has a little intricacy, and develops some late power. 15.5°. 10,000 b. Bottled already – Aug 2016. From late 2018. 2033-36 Sept 2016

2014 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED, WINE INTO LE COMPROMIS

2013

(oak vat) deep purple colour. The nose is a little meaty and reductive. The palate shows better: it is powerful in style, with firm tannins providing a rod-like backbone. Has a steely, mineral, dark fruit overtone. This has depth and structure, and will need time. It is slightly austere at present. 15.5°. From 2018. Low Grenache at 50% this year, rest Syrah. Harvested 27 September + 14-15 October. 2030-32 JL Oct 2014

2012

(vat) full robe, dark red; a roasted air lies ahead of blackberry and blueberry fruit aromas. The nose has oak traces, some dark smokiness, licorice, is enclosed for now. The palate is muscular, its strength stemming from within. It holds sealed-up, lucid red-black fruit that runs across the palate with the tannin close-knit, while the close is firm, nutty. Hardly into its stride yet. The finale is pretty clear, and it just keeps its strength under control. From spring 2017. Decant this. 15°. 2031-33  Nov 2013

2011 ()

(vat) shiny red Grenache robe. Notes of reduction thanks to the 30%+ Syrah here – the nose offers red berry liqueur airs, becomes strict after a cautious start, comes with pumice stone, smoke notes. The debut has a live acidity in its red fruit; seems a low intervention wine that is also fresh on the second half of the palate. Upright, based more on freshness than fat – structure over chubbiness. It has fibre, will live and evolve, can be interesting, especially around 2019. A little late glow emerges. 15°. 2029-32  Dec 2012

2010

(vat/casks) dark red. Blackberry fruit lead air, stuffing and content around it, some sweet ease, with licorice and thyme-garrigue herbs. The palate commences on muscled red fruit, comes with tannin woven through it, which helps it to extend. The finish is firm, grounded, at present. There's plenty of juice at the heart of this wine. Time will help its definition to crystallise – I am not sure that is has a strong ID for now. The finale is chiselled, as if more clay soils provided the crop (tasted blind). Genuine, it will become varied, provide interesting drinking. It has lovely width, wavy fruit and texture at the end – is a complete wine. From 2015. 2037-40 Dec 2011

2009 ()

(vat) dark robe; brewed and broad bouquet – there is marked intensity at its heart, black raisin and smoke. Has a soaking, coating palate that goes all around the mouth: the black fruits have a dusty vigour, and its late virility is formed around the 2009 drought power. Leave until 2014 to absorb its tannins and to arrange itself. It needs to settle its finish. 2031-34 Oct 2010

2007 ()

(vat) red, purple robe; has a primary, leesy aroma – real vat access here, so its eventual bottled state is hard to judge or predict. The red berry fruit is low-key, is leavened by a slice of freshness and latent game is present, too. There is a lithe tone to the red fruit, with a marked tannic thread through it. It holds up OK, and is two to three years from being finished – there is reassurance from some late richness. Very unfinished, edgy for now, a narrow wine. Dry on the finish. Nov 2008

2006 No Rating

2 bottles – cask samples, but not in good shape, with reduction, sweaty aromas and uneven on the palate. So another day for these. Nov 2007

2005

a full red that is gradually evolving; sealed, compact red fruit aroma – it is baked, a vintage trait, and has a nutty, oak-connected air, some sweet raisin in it. Its style is local, true Grenache, with the brightness of its red fruit aroma contributed by its Syrah. Open, fleshy red berry flavour here – it offers very good, juicy, mobile fruit that flows well, indeed glides effortlessly like an accomplished skater. Tannins enter on cue after half way, are round and flexible. It may close in a few months. From spring 2011. 15°. 2028-30 June 2008 Previously March 2007 ***** mid red robe; smoky, broad bouquet showing nicely ripe plum fruit with some spice: expect fungal, game tones in the future. Supple, bonny red fruit starts the palate., which already tastes well. Very apparent richness with some late sucrosity. Tannins are good, ripe and supportive, balance is good. 2027-28 March 2007 Previously Nov 2006 **** quite dark; pebbly, rather high tone, plum-violet aroma, has a kirsch element and an earthy nature, is restrained now. Solid core of ripe Grenache on palate – lengthens well and is thorough to the finish. Good, ripe tannins lie in support. Prune, dark fruits flavour, with a sweet curl in the texture. Less relaxed than the domaine’s Vieilles Vignes, but more scope. Oak needs leaving till 2010. 2026-29

2004

quite a pale Grenache red. There is a herb, slightly rose petal presence in the warm bouquet that is round and quite supple. With air, raisin and prune come through, an early mix of evolution and vintage style. As it breathes, it tightens and balances herbs and toffee. The palate is led by red berries, with some tar after that: the mid-palate is close-knit. Is always rather on a power base because of its 15° plus, but the texture is smooth. There is still a dark side to it that needs to be tamed – so either drink it within the next 30 minutes (!) or leave until 2009. My worry is its alcohol – it is undoubtedly heady. 2020-22 Sept 2007 Previously Oct 2006 ** warm, a bit over succulent aroma, sweetness prevails – could be crisper and clearer. Sappy palate, lacks direction – too sweet to be a real cut and dried pleasure. Fat, but lacks acidity. Shorter-term wine. 2016-19 London, Oct 2006

2003 ()

the colour is a quite pretty red; there is a high red fruits aroma – mulled fruits with some sweet Port airs and a downhome ripeness – overripe raspberry, even rotting matter. The palate is brighter than the nose – it bears soaked red cherries and red fruit liqueur of some flow. The palate is richly textured until near the finish – it tightens and becomes nutty there as its tannins gather around it. There is sinew in this, a line of tension from its alcohol and its tannin. Quite a hefty wine. 15°. From 2010. 2023-26 June 2008 Previously Feb 2005 *** wholesome, baked black fruits bouquet, has a ripe fruit side, also shows licorice. The baked theme continues on palate - outbreak of pepper, spice then on to the finish. Plenty of matter, quite overt power, has a heady feel. Raisin, prune aftertaste in the vintage mould. Needs to soften. Esp 2009 on. 2021-24 Feb 2005, London Previously Nov 2004 *** quite clear-cut bouquet, contains aromatic black fruits, is well-knit. Meaty, sound wine, good thread of red fruit, with a mineral edge. Fair length. 2008-09 on. 2022-24 "This wine is a bit more modern than my other ones" Michel Maret Nov 2004, London

2001

oily, soaked, ripe fruits bouquet - stylish. Upright wine, with non-Grenache influence, a Syrah presence that adds a blackcurrant dimension (tasted blind). Sound length. Full, quite refined - its oak needs a little time. From 2007-08. 2027-29 November 2003, London

1999

top evolution on the robe, full red underneath. The nose is harmonious – soft fruit airs, plum and raspberry, smoke, with floral notes: it is just a little piercing. The flavour is tarry; it holds fruit, but it dries towards the finish, ahead of time. The texture is pebbly, the taste a little sharp, its acidity rather pronounced. It has content, but is disorderly and strict. Maybe try from 2008. I feel it can get together, and the minimum three stars testify to that. 2022-24  Nov 2006

1998

purple, mauve robe; well-ordered, restrained but promising nose – some intensity in the fruit. It is elegant, not a thundering wine on the palate, bears clean fruit. The red fruits finish with tannic support. Has a gentle style. Like a slightly superior 1997. The length is fair. A bit simple, I find this. From 2003. 2020-22 Feb 2000