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The Wines

50% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 10% Cinsault, 5-10% Mourvèdre, 0-5% Carignan (av 45 years) from clay-limestone soils, hand harvested, destemmed, 3 week concrete vat vinification, pumping overs, part vat emptying/refillings, concrete vat raised 12-18 months, unfined, filtered, “drink with grilled meats, stews, game, charcuterie, cheese”, 60-80,000 b

2016 ()

dark red, cherry colour. Has a grainy, rubber-fruit gum aroma, a slightly baked aspect; the nose is not yet all as one. The palate gives good, running raspberry, red berry fruit on the attack, is free and a little disorderly vis-à-vis its tannins and their role, their fit. This is country wine, not that polished, is up for stews more than refined dishes. It’s a wee bit hollow along the palate, is disparate. It finishes on the dry side – meaning food is a must. Attack beats the finish. 14.5°. 60,000 b. 50% Gren, 30% Syr, 10% Cins, 10% Mourv. 2024-25 Sept 2018

2011 ()

healthy dark red colour. Has a spiced-baked cross aroma with a fat black fruit heart; there is a pungent side to its fruit air. The palate is pumped-up in style – the theme is one of ripe fruit, and the tannins are only very mild. Gourmand, flattering style of wine with rather low acidity. It is doing a lot of its work now, comes in a long maceration manner, lacks nuance, spur. Given that some of the Grenache is pre-World War Two, I feel opportunities to raise this to Grand Vin status have been missed. A Gold Medal at Orange 2013 is no surprise for this obvious do. Now to 2016. 14.5°. May 2013

2009 ()

dark red; rather elegant black fruit nose that has an easy sweetness in it, is accessible. The palate starts on compact, dense black fruits, then builds up tannin, ends on dry notes indeed. I wonder if it is over extracted, overdone. From spring 2012. 14°. To 2017 March 2011

2008

full, bright robe; the bouquet shows promise – is a brew of black fruit, tannin, a touch of cold coffee – it is agreeable, has plenty in it, a few damp notes are already here. There is a white pepper infusion in the palate black fruit, with a good, juicy middle stage before an active tannin finish, a little late dustiness. The tannins have an interesting taste, with a good smoky licorice in them, and underplayed oak. From second half 2010. 2015-16 Dec 2009

2007 ()

full red robe; smoky, touch yeasty nose – black fruits, smoke, bacon. The palate holds black fruits that grip, and are accompanied by a pebbly tannic lacing. This ends a little brittle just now. Needs to settle, food is a must, not solo drinking. From late-2009. 2012-13 March 2009 Previously Nov 2008 *** (vat) red robe is full; rather locked-up red fruit aroma – it has a baked nature, lies low, and suggests black raisin – it works steadily across the glass. The palate starts with a taste of black cherry with power and an infusion of that heady power – it suggests extraction, and is marked by carbonic gas, making it not easy to taste. The inner fruit is good, though, clear and steady. There is a late hover of herbs, baked stones. From mid-2009. 2015-16 Nov 2008

2005

dark red with black at the centre; has a smoky, deep-seated aroma with raspberry potential, a little nuttiness. The palate is punchy, the red fruit flavour a bit pushed along in the cellar; the texture is oily late on, and a nutty side surfaces. Not sure about its cohesion – the combination of ripe fruit and alcohol is rather on the limit. To 2011. June 2007