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The Wines

100% Marsanne (oldest 1920s from the Saint-Joseph site, av age 63 years), since 2017 fermented, raised 67% new, 1-4 year 228-litre oak casks (20% new), 33% large oak barrel 11 months (before 2017 fermented, raised 20% new, 80% 1-4 year 228-litre oak casks 11 months), lees stirred, malo completed, fined, filtered, first wine 1983, 2-2,600 b

2019

(228-litre cask) yellow robe; the nose carries careful depth, cooked lime, cooked white plums, apricot. The palate offers some concentration, then cosy, plump gras, ends well. The length is quite sun-filled. This is intense . . manly, grounded wine, for la table. It can refine with time. 2032-34 Dec 2019

2018

fine yellow robe; the bouquet carries low profile weight, assembles peach, nectarine airs with a roasted nuts backdrop. The palate has a rich start, really moves out well, runs with thorough, sunswept content, the finale layered, and lip smacking. Its depth indicates la table, dishes such as lobster on the menu. It combines its fat with sound freshness, so is harmonious around its centre. The aftertaste is buttery. 13.5°. 100% Marsanne. €32. 2029-30 Nov 2019

2017 ()

shiny yellow robe. The bouquet is tender, aided by the age of the vines, no doubt, has a white peach, floral nature, is refined, graceful. The palate is well structured, develops depth along the palate, with a complex variety of small contributors on the finish – quince, ginger, white pepper. This serves style and texture. It requires study to be best appreciated. Decanting helpful, serve in a large glass. The finish can expand, and this will be great in its second phase, so tuck some bottles away. 14.5°. From mid-2019. 2030-32 Dec 2018 Previously Nov 2017 (228-litre cask, 100% Marsanne) **** bright yellow. There is good, elegant richness on the nose, fine tuned white fruits, curvy airs of flowers and apricots. There is a good strike of Marsanne, which grips well as it goes. This is good spinal wine, a tangy arrow through it. Fine gras here, sustained and neat juice. 2028-30 Nov 2017

2016 ()

yellow robe, quite full colour. Tropical fruits, mango, with a concentrate of lime show on the nose, the essence of grape. There’s smoke, white tobacco. The palate holds a concerted rolling gras richness, is well lined with fat in the mid-palate before tang and Marsanne bitter grip. This is well founded, has heart. It’s tasty, the texture is very pleasing. It’s superb with Dover sole and will be the same with truffled dishes. Has character, interest. “It will be more aromatic in 4-5 years,” Bernard Gripa. 13.5°. 2,500 b. €21.50 export. From spring 2019. 2034-36 Nov 2017

2015

pretty full yellow robe. The nose is large, not much open, bears a weighty and ripe fruit content. There are hints of petrol  and aniseed with a roasted nuts, nougat suggestion: we are further south than St Joseph on the nose. The palate is broad and sustained, right from the off. This imposes, and is a kingly wine with its steady assertion of ripe flavour and near red wine structure. This really covers the ground, takes you on an Ordnance Survey, detailed walk. Very good with all the greats of Vieille France cuisine, Escoffier school – pieds et paquets, ris de veau, poulet de Bresse in a morilles sauce – bring ‘em on! Decanting a necessity. It will be much better and more expressive when aged five years or more. From mid-2018. This is a proper, glycerol-based white Rhône, no sign of New Wave trash here. 14.5°. 2,600 b. 100% Marsanne. 2028-30 Oct 2016

2014 ()

full yellow robe. The nose leads on oak, has scale and width, trumpets aniseed, toasting, vanilla pod, white peach fruit. The palate is bulky, charged: this is a companion for white meats, sweetbreads, sauced dishes, anything with a full flavour. It is manly wine. The flavour involves guava, nectarine, before the tangy chime of the Marsanne and its note of a slightly bitter clinch rides on to the stage. The aftertaste is oaked. From 2017. 13.5°. 2023-25  Oct 2015

2013

yellow robe. The bouquet is withdrawn, has a roasted nut air with dabs of peach fruit. It suggests there is more to come. This offers a shapely richness, fills the palate well, takes on cooked citrus fruits and extra intensity towards the finish, is up a gear or so there. Jolie finesse here, a really suave texture. 13.5°. 2022-23  Jan 2015

2012

medium depth yellow, lustrous hue to the robe. The bouquet hasn’t yet emerged, but is promising: it has a good inset of Marsanne hazelnut, wee caramel oaking, a discreet cooked lemon. The palate delivers waves of flan and white fruit flavour, its freshness good, the finish satisfyingly firm, with no loose ends. There are fine pockets of acidity here – this is well orchestrated. Can be decanted. There are fennel nudges on the aftertaste. Quite complex. From mid-2014. 13.5°. €18.70 ex cellars. 2020-22  Nov 2013

2011

pale robe. There is a possible note of SO2 on the nose -  this has just been bottled, has a sherbet lemon air, aromas of cooked white fruits, spice, a note of cardboard. This is not yet orderly. The palate kicks off on Marsanne hazelnut. It is notably tight-knit, with a spot of gras at half way which increases its length and appeal. It ends with a crisp tang, white fruit jam there. Has a grounded style, but isn’t together yet. Beefy wine, take time to let it fuse. Can improve. From late 2013. 2019-21 Nov 2012

2010

(3 year 228-litre cask) mid-depth yellow; hazelnut-toast, slight butter aroma of elegant depth and ripeness – this will be fine and full. Interestingly assured character here – the gras richness is well implanted. Good balance, and precise fruit. “The winter was cold this year – under 10°C in the cellar – so the whites have taken their time,” Fabrice Gripa. 2022-23 March 2011

2009 ()

even yellow; the nose is broad, prominent smoky oak, fat, has a barley sugar fat, exotic fruits. The palate is similar, comes with an extreme crop ripeness aspect, a gush of spiced, honeyed, oaked flavour, expresses its fat before a wee licorice, aniseed exit. Firm hazelnut taste on the finish. A lot of true Marsanne here – it ends typically, with that tang of mineral. Will age well. Food needed. “My most surprising wine in 2009 – there is a lot of content, but there is a finesse that it does not usually have. It is very unusual to have a wine at 14.4° and a good pH of 3.7.” 2023-25 March 2011

2008 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED

2007

light yellow robe; has a lemon, citrus top air, with more substance such as lime tart underneath – this shows a good, true Marsanne nature, plus some oak. The palate grips from the start – there is a coil of white fruit within, with definite Marsanne energy. The finish is based on hazelnut and nougat, also baked fruits, with apricot coming through on the aftertaste. This can emerge well over time. I like its length. From spring 2010. An interesting mature stages beckons, around 2013 on. 13°. 2017-18 Dec 2008

2006

deep yellow robe. The bouquet is a fresh dandy, gives airs of camomile, cooked peach, flowers such as honeysuckle, honeycomb and aniseed. At first the palate grips tightly with oak closing it, and ending on an aniseed, tang of Marsanne, clean as a whistle note. Decant this: 30 minutes of air brings expansion, and greater richness. Very good, true, even with the oak, has proper vin de table qualities. 13°. 2021-22 June 2015 Previously Jan 2008 **** pale yellow. Has a mild, hazelnut-inspired aroma, that holds some spice and white fruit, perhaps white plum, also. A few airs of butter and agrume or citrus fruits hover. The palate embarks with a hazelnut, lightly buttery rich nature, and keeps a steady, effortless flow – this is bonny. Good length, ends with both clarity and some richness. Balance good, so good that it can do well as an aperitif. There is more to come as it will gradually open. 13°. 2015-17 Jan 2008 Previously Dec 2007 ***(*) elegant, peach, hazelnut nose with a light flan air. Has a suave, elegant palate that contains oak toasting such as vanilla in the taste. Still rather unformed. There is a dried apricot flavour, a white raisin aftertaste where there is some kick. Good potential here. 2017-18 Dec 2007

2005

yellow; peach with some spice glints and a buttery backdrop – bouquet is enjoyably full. Round shape to palate – here there is mature fruit with a Marsanne hazelnut display. Good acidity and cut at the end, which is nice and solid – this flows well. Good typicité, has a lovely grace, and can live. Yes, sir. 2012-14 Dec 2006 Previously April 2006 ***(*) (cask) bouquet appears full, but early to judge. Compact, rich palate, very tight-knit, deep and solid. Good length. April 2006

2004 ()

yellow tints. Oak-honey-banana bouquet, rather a formula wine style. Round and pretty full start, but the oak arrives in a big way, and takes over. Leaves a mineral, rather vacant end. Right now is very plain, try it from mid-2007 on. It can pull through, but I would prefer less oak. 2009-11 June 2006

2003 ()

nutty, full bouquet, some oak. Big, full wine on palate, flan, crème patisserie flavours, mineral touch on finish. Fat texture. 2012-14

2002 ()

(casks) mid-weight nose; fair richness, touch plain.

2001 ()

solid, quite firm bouquet. Apricot, quite rich - enough for the wood. A bit potent. Fat, rich wine, with good length. Quite potent, can live for maybe 10-12 years. From 2004-05. To 2010-11.

2000 ()

fine nose, some breadth; generous flavour, fair weight, not too fat. Tasty length. Oak can integrate.

1998 ()

full yellow robe; the nose is reserved, still young. It is led by butter, that has a lacing of lime freshness. The palate shows the saltiness of Roussanne, the ageing has brought a touch of the damp wool, and also light caramel – it is all delivered with elegance, the finish also fine – the Marsanne moves through there, with its grip and slight bitter note in the hazelnut. To around 2014. June 2008