Login | Subscribe
twitter

The Wines

1970s Syrah (Serine) from 18 rows on Diognières, 15% whole bunch fermentation only in 2015 & 2017, destemmed otherwise, 3 week vinification, pumping overs, part vat emptying/refillings, malo in oak, aged 20% new oak casks, 80% 1-2 year oak casks which are 20% 228-litre, 80% 600-litre 15-18 months, unfined, filtered, 2,100-2,500 b

2018

(casks, bottling Apr 2020) full robe; the bouquet bears neat black fruits, with a clear funnel in their offer. Cassis, black cherry mingle. The palate sets off with a typical Diognières grace in the content, which is silky, smoothly textured, has a steady run into a gradual increase in depth on the close. This is nicely orchestrated, can gain more mid-palate heart over time. 2,500 b. From 2024. 2043-45 Dec 2019

2017

(cask) dark red robe, subdued rim. The nose is gently full, well rounded, on red fruits such as plums, carries a steady depth, is not yet varied at all. The palate has the knuckle of youth, a fibrous display of cooked stone fruits with latent punch in the tannins, a rocky texture from them. The fruit streams well, with definite surge, and will serve it well over time. It’s very unrefined for now, but promising. The oak brings a note of caramel on the finish. The length is sure, so time will be the main asset in the short-term. From 2022. 2040-42 Feb 2019

2016 ()

(casks, bottling April 2018) full red colour, black centre. The nose is suave and rounded, has southern hints, black olives, with a coulis of black berry fruits, sleek black cherries at its centre. The palate links closely, is based on a stylish, smooth flow richness, its tannins right in the wheel. It delivers a tasty, fluid black fruits flavour, and the tannins ease gently into the picture, nothing hurried or untimely about them. It ends on velvet. Attractive, genuine Hermitage, not the grandeur of the leading sites, but very elegant nonetheless. 14°. From 2021. 2035-37 Nov 2017

2015

(cask) dark, deep robe. Has a nicely pulped fruit air, blackberry with a note of blueberry, licorice. It is stylish, leans towards Burgundy. The palate sets off with stylish gras that is very typical of Diognières, bears handsome gras richness, flexible tannins, a healthy roundness towards the finish. The shape is spherical, and there is a belle finesse and lovely plumpness at its heart; we have inky Pinot here. It has a super tasty centre, its juice is refined, all through, the balance is good, and it is very true of its place. Whole bunch fermentation for the first time here. From 2020. 2035-38 Oct 2016

2014

(casks, bottling March 2016) dark robe, nicely full robe. The bouquet is attractive, has a cool inner, with an aroma of cassis fruit, smoked bacon, flowers and raspberry: it is heading towards a good variety of aromas. The palate links well to the nose, holds suave content, a flavour of simmered red berries, has a compressed juice. It ends with a sexy curve, is a real Road Runner there. Its texture pleases. From 2018. 2028-30  Oct 2015

2013

(casks) dark colour. Gives a good, curvy air of black berry, good berry fruit on the nose: it prolongs well, has a safe, fat centre. It leads on supple, nicely generous fruit that washes widely across the palate, with abandon. Entertaining wine, which shows life and clarity as it finishes, some menthol and oak tar there. There is good purpose about this, a genuine Hermitage. It brews up a little glow on the finish. From 2017. 2026-28  Jan 2015

2012 ()

(casks) dark, full robe. There are subtle pockets in the nose, ripe and savoury fruit such as cooked plums, a coulis of blackberry. The palate is more entrenched than the nose – it has a good lining of classy fruit and fine-sculpted tannins that provide a firm, polished frame to the wine. All parts pull in the same direction. A slow-burn developer that has the elegance of 2012. From 2016. 2028-29  Nov 2013

2011 ()

dark robe. The nose is broad, is well put together, pretty deep, and is brightened by a small whirl of flowers such as pansy and a snap of licorice. The palate achieves stylish depth; the fruit is grainy, granite-inspired, has that mineral cut in it, resembles a schist wine of Rozier at Côte-Rôtie. Good poise, holds its ground well. It is manly across the palate. Decant this. From mid-2015. 2027-29 Nov 2012

2009

(casks) dark robe; smoky, inky nose, full and intense, has a secure depth, offers traces of licorice and oak. It is very open now, but will close. Solid, firm foundation to the palate, a tight-knit wine with good black fruit in its veins, running with style and freedom, the fruit ripe. Its oak is working into it already, and it is certainly promising. It finishes really generously, is potentially juicy and feminine, a real pleaser. From 2013-14. 2023-26 Nov 2010

2006

bright, full red-black colour; oak runs across a streamlined nose – it has a plump cherry at its heart – it is ripe and raisin-like: there is three-quarter depth in this. The palate has a gracious style, with oak floating in behind before the charcoal of the oak takes over again. Has an upright finish, with some core richness to help it. Too much oak here – the finish is too oaked. From 2011. 2020-22 Dec 2008 Previously Dec 2007 *** (casks) full, black cherry robe. The bouquet holds black fruits of some elegance, with a little lamb stock in the aroma, with down-home, earthy notes, too: has a faintly herbal, sweet presence thanks to the mulled fruits. The palate also is sweet-toned, with mulled blackberries – moves along, and ends on a slight, tar tone. Has an even, quite rounded finale as it draws to a quiet finishing point. Is not that thorough, as if the crop has come from a lesser zone of the hill. Stops a bit early. From mid-2009. 2016-18 Dec 2007

2005 ()

bright, full dark robe with legs down the glass. The bouquet shows black fruit with a floral top air, is ripe and prolonged if you sniff hard – in its width are ripe raspberry, mulberry and olives also – this has come from ripe crop. The palate has a knit, thorough fabric, the taste led by black fruits. It has been given some OK, dry rigour by its tannins. Very much a structured year. There is a good, rather meaty element in it. All to play for here. From 2010. 2022-24. Bottled June 2007. Jan 2008

2004 ()

bold, black jam aroma, is suave with leathery outcrops, latent warmth, shows character, gains chocolate side more international with a few hours air. Pepper, black fruits impact, has a good, live texture with enough content to evolve and soften. Oak esp evident on aftertaste, and gains ground the longer it is open. Oaking needs three years to absorb, so leave till 2009. Brooding darkness in this wine, is a little forced. 2019-21 April 2006

2003

(cask) bosky, peppery fullness on bouquet, on the stern side. Oily, black fruit attack, wine is a bit stretched, cellar work on top. Oaked aftertaste, bit bitter. Leave so can integrate, relax. 2008 on. 2016-18

2002

(cask) stinky, black aroma; is very reduced, stewed black fruits, core is OK, pretty warm. Hard to judge like this.

2001

deep, bosky, wild/leathery nose; broad, upright, has local feel. Oily texture, core black fruit, pepper end. Good length, character. 2008 on. 2019-21

2000 ()

rather dark robe. Black fruit, tar aroma that has burnt, roasted edges – it is upright, a bit taut. Air brings out smoky bacon, meat notes. This attacks on red fruit, berries, is clear-cut, then produces a tannic imprint and an oaked end. The pebbly finish is due to the supremacy of the oak. It needs air and time. The fruit style is tender and plum-like, which reflects Diognières correctly, unlike the more robust plenitude of Méal. The oak is too constant, so its true character will only emerge later on, from 2008. This is the softer side of the Hermitage hill. 2015-2017  Jan 2004