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The Wines

100% Syrah, 40-55% from St-Jean-de-Muzols (2003, 0.75 hectare, S facing, very abrupt hillside, mother rock close to the surface), 45-60% from Saint-Désirat (1988, 0.75 hectare, lime-clay, S facing, windy), St Jean crop can be 30-65% destemmed but mostly if not all whole bunch 2 week vinification of the two sources apart, pumping overs, cap punching, in concrete vat until January after harvest, then aged 5-10% new, 90% 1-6 year casks 12 months, unfined, filtered, “a wine to drink at the counter of the bar”, 7,500-11,000 b

2018

very dark colour; sun rays, black olives show in a fulsome, profound nose. It’s very primary, has a mix of red and black berries, lead pencil. This is structured, very steely St Jo, carries a crunchy second half, is closed. There is iron strength here, with time required to prise it open. There’s a note of black olives on the aftertaste. Bottled Dec 2019. From 2023, decant it. 2037-39 Feb 2020 Previously Dec 2018 **** (used 228-litre cask) full, dark red robe. Beef stock, even black olives and their southern implication feature in the nose, a coulis of blackberry, thick fruits, grilling. The palate delivers instant black fruits with good freshness, is lively and up, really swings along brightly. The fruit sustains with some flesh. This is good, well contained St Jo, has nice heart, feels hand made, carries expressive fruit. There’s slight late spicing. From mid-2021. 2036-38 Dec 2018

2017

(casks, bottling March 2019) quite a dark red; red fruits lead the nose, mulberry, wee oaking, iodine, licorice a little soft sweetness. Itr’s a nose that holds well. The palate comes with cut, a ping of mineral, good, brisk fruit with energy late on. It keeps running into a crunchy, seashore close. This needs time to fuse, isn’t very long on gras richness, is rather lithe. It can just make it to ****. From spring 2021. 2034-35 Dec 2018

2014 ()

(steel vat, bottling in one month) bright, dark red robe. Blackberry fruit leads a supple and curvy bouquet, has a small, gentle depth of cassis and blackberry. The palate delivers sleek fruit off the bat, supple tannins with a steady increase in depth. The aftertaste is beau, scented. This has joli length and freshness, is charming and true. “Normally we are 55% St Jean de Muzols, 45% St-Désirat, but this year hail, sheep and wild boar destroyed or ate the St Jean crop, meaning that the ratio is 80% St-Désirat and only 20% St Jean,” Maxime Graillot. 2026-28  Oct 2015

2013 ()

healthy dark robe. The bouquet is roasted, has an oily, intense viscosity, presents pork lardons, black berry fruit with a liberal dosing of varnish from its oak. There is also a savoury, red meat, aspect, and this is a deep, varied start, a bit of the Wild Child about it. The palate is also dosed with pine-varnish, and has a grippy nature, a raw strength of its own. The flavour is prune, cooked berries with a hit of demanding, tarry tannin on the late moments. From mid-2016, needs to settle. Almost exaggerated in the cellar, and green notes here and there for now. 100% whole bunch this year. 13°. 8,000 b. €11.20 ex cellars.  2026-28  Jan 2015

2012

(cask 1) **(*) fair, three-quarter depth red. The nose is restrained, shows an air of chicken stock, is peppery but not expressive. The palate fruit is plain, needs racking, isn’t a lot of fun. This needs help. Peppery wine. From 2015. 35% whole bunch. 2022-24  (cask 2) ***(*) bright red; floral, notably rose flowers aroma, with red fruit, smoky iron – it is lovely and fresh. This is rock n’roll on the palate, has a snappy granite inspiration, you want to crunch into the granite, is a beau, STGT part of the wine. Attractive length, very good. From mid-late 2014. 2025-26. 7,500 b this year.  Nov 2013

2011 ()

three-quarter red. Raspberry fruit jam, coulis aroma – this is a lively, open, free-spirited nose. The palate has a crunchy nature, a flavour of mulled berries, carries well, with a tuning of smoke and flint. It shows good vigour now, and can be drunk on that. For now it is a wild horse with a spinal moment. The palate is more interesting than the nose. 70% whole bunch. 2022-24  Nov 2013 Previously Nov 2012 **(*) bright, quite full red. Cooked raspberry air, light vanilla, with a note of violet. Black jam fruit on the palate, which is mainstream in style, doesn’t quite grab me. There is a late spot of tannin and grip, with a licorice aftertaste. It is suited to bistrot drinking. From 2014. 13°. 2021-23  Nov 2012

2010 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED - SOLD IN BULK

2008

(5 yr cask) bright, clear red; has a cherry and spice, clear red cherry fruit nose. The palate shows direct red fruit that gains quietly as it goes – there is extra matter by half way. It ends firmly, crisply, is a real early tooter. Definite solo drinking potential here – the zinc beckons. To be bottled Nov 2009. To 2018. March 2009

2007

bright, live red robe; has a pretty red fruit jelly aroma with a cinnamon line of spice in it. The palate fruit is firm, cutting, with the firmness lasting all through. The length is OK. Obviously from young vines – they compose part of this wine, and the vintage style does the rest. There is a little “black fruits depth, and a licorice end. The sort of wine straddling the thought that you drink it young, but knowing that its acidity will settle, but also knowing that its body isn't deep due to the young vine fruit. 2019-21, and especially 2010 spring on. March 2009. 7,000 b this year. Previously Jan 2008 ** (cask) reductive, but free flowing aroma – friendly berry and cherry fruit within. The palate starts with red fruits, ends quite long, has some tannic fencing and licorice. Quite a direct wine. From 2010. 2018-20 Jan 2008

2006

sound red colour; raspberry aroma with a touch of crème in it, and a little earthy undertone that helps it out. Mid-weight red fruits on the palate, that have a low-register plum flavour that is scented as well. Quite airy, but nice. There is a tickle of late tannin. Will be softer by mid-2008. To 2021-23 Jan 2008

2005 ()

(cask) some strictness of aroma, shows bosky Syrah, is smoky. Black fruits attack, again the smokiness - this is very much a wine of the granite - direct, clear and mineral. Has a core within, shows fruit and body. I like its fruit. 2021-23 Dec 2005

2004

scented aroma, mix of ripe fruit, road tar. Direct, expressive, mature fruit on palate, travels in a straight line. Go go wine, drink it up, there is a nice little fruit persistence. "Not our usual volume here" A.G. Previously (cask) *** easy cherry fruit aroma, pretty. Gains weight through the palate, lively fruit, frisky. No great body but enough to be sympa. Fair balance. Early wine, 5-6 year horizon.

2002

(cask) cherry aroma; straight red fruit, length OK, bit of vegetal at end. Early wine.

2001 ()

pretty black fruit aroma; good fruit, some warmth, pepper touches at end, nice tannins. Softer by 2004-05. 2018-20

2000

dry-toned peppery fruit nose, animal/meat edges. Wild black fruit, good grain in it. Tightens nicely near finish. 2014-16

1995

more flattering than usual, more flexible, less upright. Attractive fruit, expansive. Smoky, bacon aromas present. To 2007-10