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The Wines

75-90% Grenache (av age 58 years), 10-25% Syrah, from N-W facing Romane Machotte vineyard at 450-500 metres, later harvested crop, destemmed, 30-35 day vinification, pumping overs every 2 days, part vat emptying/refilling during fermentation, aged 0-80% large barrels, 20-100% new Allier oak casks 24 months, unfined, unfiltered, 20,000-27,000 b

2018 ()

(casks) full red colour; the bouquet has a Grenache-led spiced, red fruit jam, cooked strawberry aroma, comes with a trifle dusty aspect. The palate bears some of the baking of the hot vintage, is compressed, the juice clamped, the tannins firm to dry. It’s a sunshine, Southern, grounded wine, which requires keeping to bring more freedom and expression, and to soften it as well: it can do that, will have its moment in the sun later on. Decant it. 15°. 26,660 b. 90% Gren, 10% Syr. €19.90 at cellars. From 2024. 2039-41 Feb 2020

2017

(casks) sound, quite full red robe; there’s a lead air of crushed pistachio nutshells, an inlay of stylish raspberry fruit, a vegetal connection on the nose. The palate holds savoury, content, a willing raspberry coulis or jam flavour which persists well, with clarity on the finish. It collects some of the cool features of Gigondas, and the smooth texture reminds me of a wine from sandy soils. This is promising, elegant, aromatic. 15°. 90% Gren, 10% Syrah. From mid-2021. 2040-42 Oct 2018

2016

(casks) dark red. The nose gives a lucid aroma of cherry-raspberry fruit, has a coulis style, appealing sweetness, glistens with juvenile brilliance, shows some oak in the background. The palate is the home to most attractive Grenache red fruits, red cherries with a suave style and juicy content. The mid-palate is very well filled, the balance is good, and the purity of the fruit striking – it’s crystalline. The oak will require another four years or so to fuse into it. A most winning bottle awaits, full of the clarity of Gigondas. From 2021. 2036-39 Oct 2017

2015 ()

(barrel/cask) dark, full red robe, black tints. The nose gives a piled aroma of simmered black berry fruits, has a damp connection, shows some licorice. It’s well filled, but also has a cool inkiness. The palate is robust, full, tight as a drum, carries an intense black fruit flavour with dark tannins right in step. It has the frame of a fresh region wine. It is full of healthy charge on the finish, really reaches out a long way, with oak present there. From 2021. 2036-39 Feb 2017

2014

(casks) bright red robe. Has an aroma of cooked plum, Grenache foremost, a light sweetness behind, a hint of dried herbs. The palate bears sparky red fruit, with live, salted tannins, a wine of cool altitude influences (tasted blind). It needs 18 months to fuse and expand. The raw materials are good and clear, and the fruit has a Pinot quality of precision. It finishes with some kirsch and crunch. This will be stylish. 14.5°. 20,000 b. 85% Gren, 15% Syr. €18.80. From mid-2017. 2026-28  Dec 2015 

2013 ()

(casks) dark, bright purple colour. Ripe, creamy red and darkly fruited nose. There’s a hint of oak but it is well integrated. There is good depth of fruit on the palate, the oak used well, giving added complexity. Lots of dark fruit flavour here with licorice and spice notes. The tannins are firm and long and refined. 14.5°. From spring 2017. 2028-30 JL Dec 2014

2012 ()

(casks) firm, dark red; sprightly and openly fruited nose, offers a roll of inviting abundance with sweet touches, soaked black cherries – this is a bouquet of some largesse. The palate is live and fresh, the fruit direct through it, some extra tar and tannin as it ends. Both the freshness of 2012 and the freshness of Gigondas present. The fruit is clear, with a tasty little point at its centre, develops some crunchy weight towards the finish. It is still unformed. From mid-2015. €18 at the cellars. 14.5°. 85% Gren, 15% Syr. 2026-28  Dec 2013

2011

(casks) dark robe. Has a nicely thick air of blackberry jam and compote, plus an earthy, dark soil underlay, a hint of reduction, and red meat. A stylish sweep of black fruit comes forward, darkened by its oaking which emerges on top on the finish. It has cut and clarity as it ends. Going the right way; it shows the Gigondas clearness on the palate, while the nose involves local garrigue influences. Modern wine with well-controlled grip at the end. From spring 2015, no hurry. 14.5°. 85% Gren, 15% Syr, €17 at the cellars this year. 2028-30  Dec 2012

2010

(casks) dark, sunny, thorough robe. Bright black fruit with a nice, crunchy air features on the bouquet, also southern black olives and a smoke-oak drift – its sweetness is delivered en finesse. The palate starts with an engaging roundness, the texture smooth and serene. The fruit is clear, with a smoky intensity present from its oak. It needs leaving until 2015 to integrate further, and from 2017 for less oak. Fine, long wine where the quality of the fruit and its precision are noted. There are speckly, crisp late tannins. All in order here. 2033-35 Dec 2011

2009

(barrel/cask) darkly layered robe; black cherry, stone fruit air with plenty in it, while Syrah influences add darkness to the fruit, has a grounded depth. Wide, juicy debut to the palate, then a gradual take-on of fresh, clear tannin. Well made to achieve a fine purpose, has a mildly tar aftertaste. Good balance: this holds a good core of juicy matter, quality tannins and freshness, so is well done. Promising wine. From 2014. 2028-30 July 2011

2008 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED. Wine went into the Gigondas classique red.

2006

dark, still well-filled robe. This is chiselled, mountain wine: it is nicely binding and coming together, attacks on oak, pine, bears a stylish canopy of red, deep fruiting. The bouquet reflects pine, menthol, cool and clear red fruit. It still grips tightly on the finish, though, so doesn’t declare as much as it could. Clear-cut, striking wine that carries its altitude on its sleeve. 14.5°. 2025-27  Dec 2013