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The Wines

32-34% Roussanne, 32-34% Grenache blanc (both 1979-80), 32-33% Clairette rose (1960s), 0-4% Bourboulenc from sandy, galet stone soils on Pignan (N-E), Bédines (N-E), Guigasse (N-E), St Georges (N-E), whole bunches pressed, 2 week steel vat fermented at 17°-18°C, raised 5-6 months, then blended, malo blocked, organic wine, 5-8,000 b

2018

yellow robe; the nose offers a little citrus fruit, verbena, a low-key mandarin air, isn’t especially together. The palate has a white fruits flavour, with a nudge of freshness attached, doesn’t quite strike out. It has weight, ends with a plum fruit, rather edgy note. 14°. 5,000 b. 34% Gren bl, 33% Clairette rose, 33% Rouss. €23. 2026-27 Oct 2019

2016 ()

yellow robe. Citrus-lemon, zesty aroma with a ripe inner, an exotic fruit, grapefruit-passion fruit presence. It’s a good combo of freshness and southern ripeness, a slight buttery notion. This drinks easily, bears plump gras richness with a squeezy texture, dried fruits flavours, some tannic thrust on the close with salted touches on the aftertaste. The nose is agreeable, the palate likeable, if a little functional. There is peach in the flavour. There’s a bit of drift on the finish. 14°. 2022-23 34% Gren bl, 33% Clair, 33% Rouss. May 2018

2015 ()

yellow robe.  Apricot and very ripe peach lead the bouquet, along with an oily, brioche aspect. The palate runs directly, bears rather stylish gras, has good grip all through. There is a neat concentration on the finish, with garrigue nuances there, gorse, wild flowers. It drinks well now. 14°. 5,000 b. €20 at the cellars. Bottled Jan 2016. 2021-22 Sept 2016

2014

bright pale yellow. This has an engaging bouquet, open and broad, led by pear-nectarine, greengage plum plenty of fruit prompts, a note of petrol. The palate also delivers immediate fruit with no shyness, has a ginger tang towards the finish. This is quite rare this year: it has freshness, but also a rolling, stylish gras and good carry to the precise finish, no dips en route. Good table wine for a wide variety of dishes. A superior Châteauneuf 2014 blanc. 14°. 5,000 b. €20 is very fair = VALUE. 34% Rouss, 33% Gren bl, 33% Clair. Bottled March 2015. 2023-25  Oct 2015 

2013 ()

gentle yellow robe. Orange zest features in a live bouquet with some inner reserves, dabs of lemon also, roasted nuts, a honeycomb moment. This starts directly, has an aperitif style weight, develops saltiness on the finish. Stone fruits with a tang, a nugget of bitter in them here. It shows grip in a decisive finish, with brief gras there. A bracing Châteauneuf white, modern and on the go. Steamed fish will be good with this – to pick up on its clear lines. 14°. 2023-24  March 2015  Previously Oct 2014 *** pale, green flecked colour. Fresh, floral-fruit nose. Fruit on the palate but less well-defined. Slightly dry, tannic finish. Not quite together yet, needs time to settle. From 2015. 2023-24 JL Oct 2014

2012 ()

good shiny yellow robe. Guava, gooseberry, exotic fruits aroma here, nice and live, also has a Canteloupe melon quality, with cooked banana also featuring. The palate is tight, perhaps on the back foot from a second phase evolution. It has a chunky, solid nature, is grounded and robust – I note the degree of 15° plus. It glows on the aftertaste – no surprise there. It must be drunk with food – fish pie, veal, pork, for instance. The finish is compact, sturdy. It just handles its degree. Decant it. 15°. 2024-26  Apr 2015

2011 ()

pale yellow. Zesty air led by grapefruit with a deeper, banana aroma, also pineapple – this is a pretty full, wide nose. The palate also starts on grapefruit, with mandarin – it has that zest, spring of live fruit on its outer, with a sound level of gras richness inside. The length is OK. Good wine for foods – fish, cheese. It ends freshly, too, with white pepper touches on the aftertaste. A little made in the cellar over the vineyard. 14°. €18.50, 8,000 b, bottled Feb 2012. 2021-22. Dec 2012

2010 ()

pale yellow, green tints. Pear-candy lead aroma, a banana overlay; I find acetate aand an effect of pear drop sweets. The palate starts stiffly, with a grippy, arm's length taste and feel. The stiffness is disconcerting, especially on the finish. It will perform better with foods, some strong flavours. It is solid enough. Decant this, drink from mid-2012. 14°. €18.50 at the cellars. Bottled Feb 2011, 5,000 b this year. 2020-21 Dec 2011

2009

flinty yellow. Aperitif wine bouquet – it comes all on a glitzy, fresh and immediate appeal, gets out and goes; There are some citrus traces. The palate likewise is fresh, dances deftly, has a good underlay of ripe white jam fruits, preceding an aniseed finish. Rock on wine with good length, lots of willing charm, is w.o.w. To 2016-17. Oct 2010

2008

bright, flinty robe. Has an immediate bouquet – a real zap of freshness, what I term bubbly white fruits such as gooseberry, dried fruits, along with a hint of honey at its heart. Has an arrow-like, fresh start to the palate – this is real aperitif wine, all about refreshing early drinking, though there is some gras in it. White fruits, tangy flavours, aniseed on the finish where it is not that broad. Its acidity means it can live a while. 2014-15 Nov 2009

2007 ()

yellow tones in robe; the nose is rich: toffee at first, also bergamot or tangerine, mandarin. There is attractive life in the nose: it is a mature style of white Châteauneuf. Easy-going, fleshy wine on the palate – it provides supple and sympa drinking, and is deep. With air, it gains a solid, robust nature, shows it has ways to go. It runs through to a compact, implied power finish, comes with pockets of acidity. It drinks solo now as a full-bodied aperitif. Or drink with fish in cream or butter sauces. A Coquille St Jacques à la plancha – simply grilled scallops - is rather overtaken by it, so white meats will certainly be good with it also. 2017-19 Nov 2008

2006 ()

even, level yellow colour; has a buttery-salty aroma – it is wide, quite abundant and open, shows a little vanilla pod. There is interesting variety in the bouquet, more so than the palate as it turns out. The palate is full enough, with fair richness at half way, before some tightening and the start of a more pebbly texture. It drinks easily solo (without food) now, though it is a wee bit short. There are dried fruits to the fore at first, but then it fades and is indeed tame after half way. Perfectly pleasant, but . . . 2013-14 July 2008

2005

pale yellow; sweet, white stone fruit aroma prevails over a little butter – this is a fragrant and broad nose. Good grip on the palate attack, the wine bounds out. Tight flavour at this young stage - lime and quince - with a little fairly agreeable bitterness, but I can detect some sulphur also. Firm kirsch style aftertaste, goaded on by some alcohol. A wine with bite, a good companion for the Worcestershire green asparagus. Can run for a second phase, before the alcohol gets out and about. 2013-15 May 2007 Previously Dec 2006 ** yellow robe; sprightly, white fruit bouquet – apricot plus pear, with a tickle of mineral. Grippy palate with exotic flavours such as pineapple on the finish. Structured wine that can evolve over time. Tight now, but drinkable, but I would like more supple, comfortable content. From mid 2007 on. 14°. 2013-14

2004

fresh, quite exuberant nose. Palate shows some white fruits, touch of bonbon sweets. Good grip, gains weight through the palate. Clean finish, salted, heated end. A bit forced. Better from 2006. July 2005

1999 ()

yellow/gold colour; some oxidative traces on the bouquet – sherry, very dry white fruits. The oxidative aroma effect carries on to the palate, but the wine is still rich, including towards the finish. This can actually get going if decanted. To 2010 maybe. Dec 2006