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The Wines

80-95% 100+ year Grenache, 5-20% 1960s Mourvèdre (Cristia) from galet stone covered clay soils part on La Crau (N-E), part on Grand Pierre (N-E), Charbonnière (N-E), mostly destemmed, Grenache steel vat fermented then raised tronconic oak vat 8 months (large barrel raised 8 months until mid-2010s), Mourvèdre fermented and raised in oak vats 8 months, then assembled wine vat raised 6 more months, unfined, unfiltered, 3-10,000 b

2018 ()

(vat) sound red robe; the nose is reserved, has a red berry note, genuine inner depth, breathes the garrigue, without excess power. The palate has good lining, a handsome couch of red-fruited content. It’s big in mid to late palate, insistent there. Its tannins are entering well, and it's very clearly struck, has good body, and persists, builds as it goes. From mid-2022. 2044-46 Nov 2019

2017 ()

(casks/tronconic vat, bottling Nov 2018) dark robe; elder berry, blackberry fruit airs appear on the nose, beef stock, dusty garrigue trails also. The palate is rich from the off, maintains that with a rolling sweep of blackberry fruit, pockets of licorice. The finish is pretty clear, if sizeable. There is a helpful coolness in the fruit, and it sustains well. This is bulky, grounded Châteauneuf for sipping more than free drinking. I like its primal vigour. 16°. 3,000 b. 90% Gren, 10% Mourv. From 2022. 2039-41 Oct 2018

2016

(oak vat) full red robe. The nose is playing a waiting game, so densely filled is it. It is based around black jam fruits, with some polished leather and black olives. The palate carries good, swell black-fruited matter, with a harmony in its step, never a moment of pause. The finish involves menthol, salt, welcome clarity. Its inner strength is revealed on the aftertaste where there is a prolonged surge. This is easily the best of their three special reds this year. 16°. 5,000 b. 95% Gren, 5% Mourv. From 2021. 2042-44 Oct 2017

2015

dark red colour. The nose has a neat aroma of mulberry, large red berry fruit, an under-air of grilling. Its depth is assured, confident. The palate holds fluid raspberry fruit with well tuned tannins on the roll alongside it. It has an enjoyable savoury nature, and the finish is crisp, clear. There’s power within it, but it’s potentially stylish. 15.5°. 5,000 b. Bottled already – Aug 2016. From 2019. 2037-39 Sept 2016

2014 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED, WINE INTO LE COMPROMIS

2013 ()

(vat) quite a dark red colour. The nose shows good potential: there is deep red berry fruit, and a winning seasoning of laurel, aniseed and licorice. There is a joli freedom about it, and I expect it to show very well in time. The palate starts cautiously, holds fine fruit and a surround of crisp tannin, a good rocky presence from that. This has the 2013 detail served well in the glass. The palate is more reserved than the nose, needs 3+ years. En finesse, interesting wine. 80% Gren, 20% Mourv this year, down 10% on the Grenache. From 2018+. 2033-35  Feb 2015 Previously Oct 2014 ****(*) (oak vat) fairly deep purple colour. There are dark berry and cherry fruit airs on the nose. The palate is broad and full, holds plenty of generous fruit. The texture is smooth and suave. This has the depth and concentration requisite for ageing. Firm but fine tannins add length to the finish. 15.5°. From 2017. 2028-30 JL GB £150/6 bots Berry Brothers 0800 280 2440 +44(0)207 022 8973  www.bbr.com  Oct 2014

2012 ()

(vat) steady, quite dark red; This has a shapely bouquet with some floral touches in its dark berry fruit, and an appealing, low-key sweetness. The palate is a tight affair; extracted rede juice comes forward here and there, and smoky, flinty and assertive tannins build up. It is is a raw state now, thus, with a feeling of front of the mouth acidity. It is very uncut, but can give a vigorous, pretty true Châteauneuf. Take your time: from 2017. 15°. 2031-34  Nov 2013

2011

(vat) quite dark red, many legs. Sweet, slightly syrupy raspberry fruit aroma with a drift of garrigue herbs; the nose holds together well, shows mulled fruits; by Day 2, some stalkiness. The palate has sound depth; it gibes a perky, clear run of red fruit, its power just under control, with raspberry and mulberry flavour at its centre. A pocket of grainy, toasted tannins close in swiftly at the end, the aftertaste bearing a smoky, nutty nature. Has Châteauneuf character, but needs time to fuse and settle. From late 2015. 15.5°. 2032-34  Dec 2012

2010

(vat) quite dark red. Has a careful aroma, reflects simmered red fruits, so it murmurs its message in a refined, discreet way. At its centre is red stone fruit Grenache, with an air of cassis as well. Smoke, dark tea airs hover. There is spice and dustiness in its red fruit, redcurrant flavour, with that dustiness prevailing in its tannins. It is backward overall, with a vintage 2010 chalky freshness late on. It leaves an intense, rather charged impression. From 2015. Needs time to settle. 2038-41 Dec 2011

2009

Grenache red robe, bit of give in it. Reduction on nose, so has the air of gummy fruit, decant this to break it out. The palate, I sense, is in an unsettled phase. Its core of Grenache is well implanted, and its shape is genuinely round. Cosy tannins wrap around it. Will give pleasure, is local, too. From spring 2013. 15.5°. 2032-34 Sept 2011 Previously Oct 2010 ****(*) (vat) red, raspberry colour; gummy, big fruit aroma that is also showing reduction – the shape of the bouquet is sweet, like a curved hammock, but there is a light mineral air to pep it up. The palate is compact for now, more so than the nose; it runs widely and reveals more power as it travels, leading to “dark” late notes – tobacco, dates, ripe matter. There is sound mid-palate content to hold it up well, and it ends surely. From 2014. 2029-32 Oct 2010

2007

(vat) steady, quite dark red; has a mild, gently curved nose that exudes smooth red fruit and herbs – comes on the curve. The palate is similar in its mild fruitiness – there is no real insert of depth or grip. It runs steadily, without brio. Some tannin and bite appear late on, and the finish is pebbly and minted. Has a minty, wiry interior, and needs time to arrange its fresh length. Rather plain – lacks standing. From mid-2010. 2025-27 Nov 2008

2006

(vat) quite a full red colour; has a red berry, pretty broad nose that is quite sweet in its primary stage, Grenache fruit gums here, is a bit simple. It is a juicy, red fruits wine – red stone fruits with sound flow; the length is secure. It holds fair acidity, and can be drunk from mid-2009 thanks to its currebtly woven, rounded tannins. May tighten after bottling. It's an easy natured offering. 2022-24 Nov 2007

2005

very clear, handsome full red, helped by more Mourvèdre; there are damp airs in the bouquet`s red fruit, a little turn in them, with flowers and sweet spice on the latter stages – overall it is still young, compact and its fruit well-cut. The Grenache red fruit dominates the palate, contains a grain of tannin through it, very 2005 in style. It ends towards a curved shape, the finale being secure and firm. Good balance and length of fruit, the aftertaste reflects marzipan. Very good fruit quality, very persistent. 15°. From spring 2010 or a bit later. Impressive wine. 2023-26 June 2008 Previously March 2007 ***** only 70% Grenache, with 30% Mourvèdre this year: bouquet is balanced and full of potential, holds up well – shows ripe fruit with some reserve. Good fruit strike on palate, which is full and round with some energy in it. Savoury towards the finish. Very beau, there is good balance here. Some end bite from the tannins completes a promising picture. Esp 2009 on. 2025-27 March 2007 Previously Nov 2006 **** dark robe; plum – red jam aroma with bundles of sweet, ripe fruit that comes along in a savoury, broad and slightly earthy way. Measured palate, reaches out well, is rich and suave at its core, nice and relaxed. The fruit is pretty, while there is some oak that needs leaving until 2009-10. Nicely transparent wine – indicates good balance and harmony to come. 2022-24 Nov 2006

2004

Grenache red colour with some extra darkness. Black fruit with a little yeast top note, is bosky and tight. Crisp, streamlined black fruit here, has an agreeable berried flavour at its heart. Beau Vin, length is good. Is approachable with its sweetness, has the potential to blossom. From 2008. 2020-22 Oct 2006

2003

ruby tints at the top of a maturing red robe. The aroma of red jam spreads well across the nose, with a hint of flowers present; licorice and rose petal are also detectable. There is a warm, clear and grilled note to it. The palate has a sturdy, compact texture with red cherry fruit that has bite in it, a snappy, flinty note. This has a sub flavour of Provençal herbs and the mineral of those in the late palate, which has good grip and is remarkably clear for the finish of a 2003. On this showing, 2003 is starting to come together and show style over substance, order over excess. There are black raisin, notably dusty note as it signs off. It seems to be freshening over time, has character. The slight hint of late dryness is the last signature of tannins that were rather parched at the outset. Day 2 warning, however: it has become rather thin, and not in the league of the first day, just about 3 stars and a bit. Hence: open and drink. 2003s do not have the greatest structure. 15°. 2023-24  Sept 2012, East Sussex Previously June 2008/Feb 2005 *** (*) A bottle tasted in June 2008 in Châteauneuf-du-Pape was flat, Bretty and there were dry tints on the palate, its fruit lacking lift. The previous note from February 2005 stands as follows: ***(*) pretty, quite full red, typical young Grenache robe. Balanced, potentially stylish bouquet, agreeable warm fruit. Palate has succulent fruit, warm without heat. The red fruit and clean tannins are alluring, this will please. Tannins notably are well integrated. Esp 2009 on. 2019-21 Feb 2005, London Previously Nov 2004 London **** nutty aroma, warm fruit present, garrigue herb influence. Full, fleshy palate, pretty with live red fruits, and a good Grenache core. Good length. From 2008-09. 2020-23 Nov 2004, London

2001

mid-red; restrained, prickly red fruits at core of bouquet, some spice - very true Châteauneuf aroma. Refined, rich wine, shows good, potent warmth. Texture is oily and tasty. Length is good. Good quality, pure Grenache expression. STGT wine. 2007-08 on. 2024-27 November 2003, London

1999 ()

young, bright, dark red robe. The nose is reticent – gives a subdued cherry, red berry aroma, the fruit ripe and aided by a touch of flowers; it is still young and promising. There is a note of dust in the fruit before it gains a coffee-toast side from the oak after half way. The fruit is elegant. I feel its cellar work gets in the way of a joyous simplicity and natural flow. It is softly fruited before its oaked moment. The length is OK. May be more ensemble from 2008. 2021-23  Nov 2006

1998 No Rating

I have had two bottles recently, both with rampant Brett, the wine poured away. Feb 2016 Previously June 2009 ***** comfortable red robe – shows a little evolution, but is taking its time. Has a broad, open bouquet with a smoky, black fruit heart, and rays of sun off the stones in its ample nature – it is really full and young. It settles well with air, showing a solid pebbly, complex couch that is varied – smoke, roasting, ground coffee, and then the floral garrigue enters after 90 minutes. There is a roll of black fruit with a prolonged, persistent richness deep within on the palate. It ends on a little power, and truly reflects the warm south. It is very Grenache in style – has genuine guts, a minted edge to it, still some tannic attitude. The ending is firm, long, the aftertaste clear and fresh. The air brings out a sinew in it, indicating it is still not mature by any means. A solid citizen wine, one with a fine pedigree, too. 2024-26 June 2009 Previously Nov 2008 ***** full red, good core to it still. Classy, harmonious Grenache fruit aroma – it is well set, well-knit, just a little closed, but nothing that decanting wouldn't solve if opened, then drunk soon after. There is a peppery, silky, soft richness on the palate, which extends calmly. Now at a real moment of ensemble, with still bags of juice and style. It ends harmoniously, its length is good, and it is one of the leading wines of this vintage at 10 years' old – has really kept its shape and fulfilled its early promise. 14.5°. 2020-23 Nov 2008 Previously Feb 2000 ***** sound, deep red-black colour, has a natural look. The nose is genuine, warm, presents really handsome stewed fruits that are accompanied by leather, spice airs. Very Grenache-styled palate – has a good mass of flavour, and lots of end tannins towards the finish. A really good example of Châteauneuf in its natural form, comes with lots of terroir. This can live in an unflustered way until 2020-23. Very charming, has lovely gras or richness, mixes finesse and power. Feb 2000