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The Wines

75% from Chavanay, 25% from Serrières, based on 1978 Syrah, rest young vines, destemmed, 2-3 week vinification in 35 hl steel vats, pumping overs, then twice daily manual cap punchings, temperature up to 30°C, aged 5% new, 95% 1-2-3 year 228-litre oak casks 9 months, fined, filtered,hHas been called Domaine Pichon into the mid-2010s, 17-20,000 b

2018

quite a dark red; the bouquet has a brothy, stewed fruits air based on blackberry, loganberry, rays of sun in it, the South. The palate is also on noticeably ripe fruit, stone fruits that have been mulled, are liqueur-like. This isn’t free drinking wine, bears sucrosity with a little dark tannin. Try in 12 to 15 months, so it may gain more focus, clarity. 13.5°. €20. 2027-28 Dec 2019

2015

shiny, dark robe. The bouquet is on the move already, primed with supple black fruited aromas, a hint of reduction. It’s an uncomplicated start. The palate also gives an immediate run of cherry fruits with a swish in their step. It’s a little commercial, but drinks pretty well, if slightly at arms’ length. Allow until mid-2017 to help to settle the finish, where the tannins are still naked. 12.5°. 2022-23 Oct 2016

2014 ()

dark red colour. The bouquet gives a stewed dark red fruits aroma, some grilling. The palate leads on red fruits with a knuckle of tannin and grip as it goes. This is pretty tasty, has a sweet noted appeal. Licorice-tar show on the finish. Likeable St Jo for grills, red meats. 12.5°. 18,000 b. €9 export. From late 2016. 2021-22  Oct 2015 

2013

largely dark robe, legs visible. There is a low-key sweetness of red berry jam on the nose, a dash of rocky crispness with that. The nose is advancing, and the palate is nearly ready to go: it presents mild red berry, with some spice and a grainy tone from its tannins. OK, if a little uninspiring, plays it safe. It lacks the fun and buzz of the best wines this year, wanders along. Just *** maybe. It shows some warmth on the aftertaste. 12.5°. To 2019  Jan 2015 

2012

quite a dark, rather matt-toned robe. Reduction renders the nose with a gummy air, presents stewed red fruits; it is a little pedestrian in style, and more fun and games, more skip, could be offered: it is sweet, floral. The palate gives a straightforward show of black berry fruit; it fails to truly implicate the drinker, does its job, no more. The fruit may show more around mid-2014 after settling into the bottle. A tame style wine where the percentage calls have been played. 12.5°. €8.50 ex cellars. To 2018  Nov 2013

2011 ()

dark tints in a not especially deep robe; has a blackberry aroma that is simple, rather “transparent”, offers a drift of violet and pine woods. The palate holds lucid blackberry fruit with a little clear tar and licorice; it gains grainy tannins at the end, and needs at least nine months to be more certain, and to have a bit more flesh. A bit timid all round. A wine for mid-term drinking. It is easy to drink, but the finish is light. 12.5°. To 2017  Oct 2012

2010

dark tints in the robe; has a blackberry air, a fluid style, some oiliness, a little leather and extra depth as sideshows, the top air smoky. The palate blackberry fruit contains tar and spice, and ends on tobacco, a smoky tang. A medium weight 2010 that could reach for the stars more. Agreeable but not stimulating. Time may help a little, say from 2014. The length is OK. 12.5°. 2023-25  Oct 2012

2007 ()

dark, matt tones in the robe; the bouquet fruit is ripe – such as prune, is supple, and shows oak patches and some reduction. There is a good fruit lead-off on the palate, which has a chocolate, “dark” note in it. The length is sound. Has the clear tang of the northern zone of St Jo, almost a breezy feel. The fruit is attractive, has settled since December. From spring 2010. 12.5°. 2014-15 March 2009 Previously Dec 2008 **(*) full red; small berry, rather intense nose – smoky, licorice as well. The palate has a loose set of fruit that is clear and a little spotless, taut. It needs six months to become more set. Modern, arm's length wine. To 2012. Dec 2008

2006

black tones in the robe; berry, mulberry fruit aroma, comes in a soft and easy form with some light grilling. The palate black fruit has a wiry feel, a certain low-key rigour. Direct wine, up and out there. Some late tannin adds a licorice, pebbly late texture. Genuine, but a bit limited in its depth. 2011. Dec 2007 This year 75% destemmed

2005 ()

nice and crisp smoky black fruit bouquet; lithe black fruits on the palate, its tannins are evident, come along a bit early. Leave till mid-2008 so it can sort and settle. Length OK. 2017-19 Dec 2006 This year 50% destemmed only Previously, also Dec 2006, just after bottling *** full, bold robe; well packed bouquet that signals plenty of lurking berry fruit, seems tight, can open up from 2009-10. Palate carries firm black berry fruits then an oak follow-through. At a very primary stage still. Its core fruit is sleek, its tannins pebbly by contrast.

2004

rather reduced, stewed and gummy bouquet with some crème de cassis, raspberry, holds up OK, has Viognier flowers lurking. Angular start, then some mid-late palate gras. Still finding its way. Wholesome finish, this can assemble itself. Nice raspberry aftertaste, but must lose its reduction smell. Decant it. From 2008. 2015-16 April 2006 This year 25% destemmed

2003 ()

good mass of soaked fruits on bouquet. Sweet, deeply entrenched black berries flavour; the sweetness continues, joined by some warm tannins at end, then a final kick of mineral. Its restraint makes it enjoyable. 2006 on. 2015-17

2002

light, clear violet/floral nose. Northern area texture - sinewed black fruit, ends jam/sugar effect. Inoffensive, early wine. Has struggled into some shape from its cask days, when it was sharp. Bottled earlier than usual this year.

2001

stewed touches, quite full black fruit, cinnamon, soil aromas; black fruits, direct wine, dry oaken touch at end. Has grip. Esp from late 2004. 2016-18