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The Wines

60-70% Grenache (av 35-45 yrs), 15-20% Syrah (oldest 1963, rest early 1990s), 10-15% Mourvèdre (late 1990s), 4-5% Cinsault from Les Florets, Santa Duc, Les Jardinières, whole bunch fermentation of 30 days, pumping overs, 1-2 part vat emptying/refillings, some cap punching, aged 50% 1-7 year old 600-litre oak casks, 50% 65 hl large barrel or vat 14 months, unfined, unfiltered, 13,000 b

2017

(concrete vat/casks) dark red colour; the nose gives an inky air of cassis fruit with a savoury, lamb stock presence. It has a sweet essence in it. The palate holds jelly-style fruiting, aromatic black fruits with ripe tannins on board. It extends with a sure hand, is rounded and smooth all through. The juice lasts pretty well, too. From late-2020. 2036-38 Oct 2018

2016

(vat/cask) very dark colour, black with a little purple. The black cherry aroma implies some degree, has a soaked, sappy nature. There’s a little prune fruit in the backdrop, another sign of ripeness. The palate caresses with its suave content, smoothly presented black fruits with a good point of definition, a minted, menthol angle with a note of beef stock, as it finishes. It has a glossy nature, and is slightly more a wine to sip than drink freely. I expect it to close down. 14.5°. 15,000 b. From 2020-21. 2034-37 Oct 2017

2015 ()

(vat/cask) dark red colour. The nose lies in wait, has a discreet, sunny-sweet noted depth, a plump air of black fruits, some hints of garrigue herbs. The palate holds juicy, fleshy content with a roll of grainy tannins wheeling along. There is an inner meatiness to it. It’s genuine, but lacks a little brio, the extra yard or so of appeal. From 2018 – it’s not far off drinking. 2030-32  Feb 2017

2013 ()

(vat/cask) purple-garnet robe – lighter at the rim. The nose gives a red berry-cherry aroma. There are notes of kirsch on the palate. This is solid in style, backed by a firm tannic frame. Limestone terroir evident in this. A slight lack of density makes it a touch austere. 14.5°. From 2017. 2025-27  JL Dec 2014

2012 ()

(vat/cask) dark robe. Liqueur, soaked black berry fruits air, wrapped in notes of mulberry, raw tobacco, cocoa. There is no holding back – it comes across widely, is quite a high octane wine. The palate has a sturdy, rich start, travels broadly. Oak and plump fruit combine, provide a fat centre, wavy fruit rolls down the line. Tannins and oak enclose the finish, where richness is still evident. Its oak holds the finish in check, prevents it being over loose. From mid-2016. 14.5°. 2028-29  Dec 2013

2011 ()

(vat/cask) Grenache red, legs. Has a supple, rather savoury aroma of flint, thyme, smoky red fruit – the bouquet has real depth, and promise. The palate offers briar-heather infused red fruit, with small grain tannins in attendance. A pretty neat package, has pure fruit, with a sound burst of freshness, licorice on the finish. Solid quality, true, STGT wine that will be a slow gainer, but will sing. Authentic, and nicely wide and long late on. 70% G, 20% M, 10% Syr this year. 14.5°. 2026-28  Dec 2012

2010 ()

(vat/cask) dark, full-looking robe, legs down the glass. Compact, full, knit bouquet – it is not showing a lot, but one can sense the power – it breathes a red cherry essence, reflects prune and smoke. The palate has oak grain in its black fruit start, charges directly along the palate, is a wine on the move. It ends on nutty, up and down tannins, the fruit firmly ensconced. The length is good. Still at a raw materials stage, but there is a lot, plenty to come. 14.5°. From 2015. 2032-34. 65% G, 20% M, 10% S, 5% Cinsault this year. Good value at export price of €8.60. Dec 2011 Previously March 2011 (example) good robe. Red jelly, good layering in the nose, which is markedly wide. Spiced wine with depth, I note that. More refined than 2010. The flavour really stick around on the late palate, and the balance is also good. March 2011

2009 ()

(bottling in three weeks) good plum red robe. Oily, mulled red fruits aroma with a little nuttiness and menthol – a good, varied start. The palate has a dense, assured take-off – this is Good. There is an authentic hum of ripe fruit with savoury connotations, then a pretty late breeze of late tannin, a fresh, mineral moment. Traditional qualities are very well presented here. Almost a limestone snap in it – Eric has vines on Les Florets on the way up to the Col du Cayron. STGT wine. From 2013. 2026-28 March 2011 Previously Oct 2010 ****(*) (cask/vat) full robe; broad, tangy nose that extends into chocolate territory, has a bustling fullness. The palate is firmly flavoured, its tannins ripe but also firm. A solid 2009 that extends well, avoids the fleshy style. Good integrity, a wine that represents the vintage well. Nice width, hints of late oak. STGT wine, a true Gigondas. From late 2012 or 2013. 2024-26 Oct 2010

2008

shiny, good and even red. Baked fruits, easy welcome wine – shows black berry, black cherry. The palate starts softly, bears black berry fruit, has agreeable depth and a really enveloping roll along the palate. Has a sweet ball of fruit that is epicentred right in the mid palate. w.o.w. wine, a superior 2008, to be recommended because of its food-friendly virtues. Suggests the crop was carefully selected to achieve this roundness. Ends on a firm, slightly abrupt note. 14.5°. 2019-21 June 2010

2007

(vat/barrel) full, dark cherry robe. Has a sweet, supple, full nose – this is just post-fermentation, has 2.2 gm of sugar left: the Grenache gives it a sweet heart. The palate holds spiced black fruit that comes with a winning freshness; bright tannins criss-cross it, and it is very sustained, long and clear, is really persistent. There is a very bonny curve on the attack, a lovely abundance. The drinker swims in a stroking black fruit. Good potential. 2019-21 Nov 2008

2006 ()

(vat/cask) matt red plum colour; moderate red fruits aroma – shows baked red cherry fruit tart suggesting Grenache to the fore, with a peppery touch. Has some scale, width and potential. It is a little angular at the start of the palate – a real invasion of the body snatchers from early on here. Has a scented, nutted aftertaste. There is plenty of heart, and good Grenache at its centre to provide the red fruits. Tar also on the aftertaste. 2020-21 Jan 2008

2005

black plum robe. Has a dense, full nose that is really well assembled – it is intrinsically round and balanced, shows black fruits and small berries, and can become very stylish. The palate expresses clear black fruit, that flows loosely and well. There is late snap and a measured finale. There is a good bit of space in this – it is a wine of free appeal. The fruit is delightful – drink from late 2009 for a more integrated finish. Its balance is good, it has poise and authority. A complete, persistent wine with a very good core. Spices and herbs crop up on the fresh finish - accurately reflecting its vintage. 2019-22 June 2008

2004

quite bright, still full red. The red fruit is advancing a little towards mushroom, woods but there is a nice spicy air of life in it, smoky pebbles. Red fruits weave around a restrained spine. Has a pretty late ball of flavour, with licorice on the fringes. Drinking well now. Very true Gigondas, drinks well now. To 2013. Nov 2008 Previously Dec 2006 ***(*) quite dark, matt-hued robe; black olives, a broad nose of southern climes, comes with pepper and baked fruit. The palate has a pretty, raspberry fruit start, is a bit brewed, has a genuine feel. The length is sound. Good Gigondas of the hearty school, traditional in style. There are coffee and cocoa elements late on, nice and buzzy there. Good, on the punch wine. 2015-17 Dec 2006

2003 ()

the nose is fresher than the 2004: a compact red jam – plum and quince, a wee smoky, nutty top note, is even rather reticent. The palate is also compact, the red fruit very Grenache in style, has a rich heart, shows a little tannic grip late on, some dumbness, but its juice is well established, the end broad. Maybe it will narrow on the finish as it ages, but is in good shape, no excess. Has a prune flavour, traces of licorice. 2015-16 Nov 2008 Previously July 2005 *** full, smoky, black fruit aroma. Good richness on palate, very clear and precise fruit. Discreet, fine and helpful tannins. Refined, aromatic wine. Lasts quite well. Esp 2007 on. 2012-14 Feb 2006 Previously July 2005 *(*) floral, red fruits aroma that is soft and shows some advance already. Squeezy fruit starts the palate, that comes in a facile, agreeable style, with a sweet-toned texture. No “dark” areas in this, but it is rather plain just now. 2011-12 July 2005

2002

open, floral, expressive bouquet. Palate is also scented - rounded and charming. Plum fruit taste, refined. Drinks well now, good length. March 2005