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The Wines

55-75% Grenache (from sandy-marl soils on Les Ramières), 25-45% Syrah (from alluvial soils on Plateau des Garrigues), total of 6 hectares, hand harvested, crushed, destemmed, 15-20 day vinification up to 28°C, 3 daily pumping overs, part vat emptying/refilling, cap punching, Grenache concrete vat raised 6-11 months, Syrah can be aged 1-year 228-litre oak casks 6-11 months (has been raised 6 months, until 2004 was 8 months), fined, filtered, 9-16,500 b

2016 ()

dark robe, full. This has a grilled, weighty, wide aroma, pork scratchings, a firm inset of black fruits, not yet released. It carries sturdy potential. The palate is well charged with ample content, a thickly endowed presence, a southern wine with black olives, garrigue associations. There’s a note of grilling through the palate. The juice is thick, buried inside it. It’s a wine of scale, but not overdone. Drink with game, red meats, bold flavours. It courses with life and vigour, captures the imagination. 15°. 16,250 b. 55% Gren, 45% Syr. 11 months’ raising. From mid-2020, decanting advised. 2032-34 Feb 2018

2015 ()

(casks) dark red colour. The bouquet is wide and insistent, presents an ample aroma of soaked blackberry fruit with a sweet centre. The palate delivers elegant black and blue fruit and content, with a bonny generosity. It has a supple heart, and the length is persistent. It’s a dense wine, but not static, and the finish is clear. It has the potential to be interesting. From mid-2019. 2029-31 March 2017

2014

dark colour; The bouquet has a soft appeal, spreads its black berry fruit easily and widely. There is a backdrop of prune liqueur, a notion of soaked fruits. The palate connects well to the bouquet via a sweet roll of fleshy content and just a small pucker of late tannin and their added darkness. This is all very orderly, will please. The fruit is enjoyable, well struck, yum yum. 14.5°. 10,000 b. 60% Gren, 40% Syr. From mid-2016. 2022-24  Dec 2015 

2012

quite a dark red; the bouquet reveals low-key berry fruit, a slight animal presence, subdued pepper airs. The palate is savoury, carries raspberry fruit, with chocolate traces, pepper-dust tannins of the garrigue, pine moments. It is a bit taut as it ends, though there is gras richness there. Workmanlike, doesn’t ignite or bring inspiration. 14.5°. 9,000 b. 2018-19  Dec 2013

2011 ()

dark robe, shiny. Measured, inviting blackberry aroma with an attractive core abundance, an air of black cherry liqueur – this bouquet is more airborne than terrestrial, has a polished style. This is modern Vacqueyras, bears streamlined dark fruit with a healthy, tasty black cherry centre. The fruit rolls all through, with low-key tannins at the end. Pristine, drinkable, not strong on Vacqueyras herbs and spice depth. It is OK now, suited to grills for instance. This is easily engaging, has supple fruit which lasts. 15°. 2020-21  May 2013

2010 ()

full, dark red; creamy fruit air, the nose offers a harmonious, flexible red fruit that is soft, has give. Licorice-tar lurk in behind the plum fruit. The aroma spreads across with gamey notes. The fruit is blackberry at first, starts with drive, takes in powdered, dusted tannins, seems a little “high”. It ends on vanilla, licorice. A small point of acidity renders the wine brisk, and after one hour open, the acidity comes forward. Has a modern, supple style. On Day 3, the palate is peppery, has sound gras,, and superior depth to the 2009. It crosses the palate well. 14°. To 2017. Jan 2012

2009

rather pale plum red; licorice-forward front air, with red fruits and peppery notes behind; Grenache is prominent here, is maturing and evolving into a warm, spiced setting, and shows authentically local, flinty laurel and herbs. The palate is surprisingly more fragile than the nose suggests. Has a peppery outer casing, with the taste of easy red jam, Grenache-faithful, inside. I would like a little more obvious gras. The tannins are bitty, grainy. It summons an image of parched lands, herbs such as thyme and rosemary. I wonder if the crop could have been picked later to achieve that extra gras and smoother tannin. It does gain stuffing with air, and ends on strong licorice, flint-fennel notes. Very 2009 – the exit is heated on Day 3. 14°. To 2018. Jan 2012

2003

dark fruits aroma with pepper – needs time to soften and express itself. The palate is full, with a rich texture and bonny content, even if it is not very nuanced. The tannins at the end are a bit dry. To 2010. July 2005