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The Wines

mainly 1991 Syrah from E/S-E facing 1.2 hectares on gore, decomposed granite soils on Eygas at 250 metres, destemmed, 3 week steel vat vinification at up to 30-32°C, pumping overs, cap punchings, aged 50% new, 50% 1-year 228-litre oak casks with malo in those casks 16-18 months (until 2004 or so was 25% new, 75% 1-year oak casks), fined, filtered, 5-7,000 b


(cask) dark red, full colour; the bouquet carries a sleek line of red berry fruits, with smoky oak in tow. It is underpinned by sunshine ripeness, a feel of that. The palate holds soaked red cherry or griottes flavours with a swirl of oak and tannin on the finish, low-key hints of Cornas spark from the granite soils. It develops through the palate, and sets out a solid stall into the finish. The fruit brio is appealing here. It can become rather handsome, and pretty authentic, too, once the first modernity has receded. From 2023 at the earliest. 2041-43 Dec 2019 £170/6 b in bond The Wine Society +44(0)1438 741177 https://www.thewinesociety.com/openingoffer/Overview.aspx?offercode=wrh181


dark, full robe. Damp moss, iodine, licorice, coulis of blackcurrant and a note of blue fruit assemble on the nose, which is trim. The palate gives a still in the cellar, modern vinification feel, with sleek black fruit, then oak along the second half, ends coolly. This is Syrah varietal wine for now, though has hints of granite coolness. The length is sound. It’s a bit mechanical, on intervention. The fruit is quite clear, but more soul is requested. There is glow-heat on the aftertaste – the 14° on the label [add 0.5°, thus] speaks. From 2022, decant it. 2037-39 April 2020

2016 ()

(3 year 228-litre cask, bottling Feb 2018) bright, dark red. Oak-nutshells lead the nose, soaked red cherries or griottes – it’s a swell style of aroma potentially. Soft red fruits form the debut on the palate, which holds mild tannins. This is a bit piano – it could go longer. It has freshness for the future. I find the nose ahead of the palate. It will be pepped up by the new oak part when assembled. 2031-33 Nov 2017


(casks) dark robe, black tints, purple. The nose is wide, well charged with fulsome black berry fruit, oaking attached. It’s a strong start, needs time to get together and blossom. The palate bears lots of juicy gras and bounty with fleshy depth and genuine length. The tannins stamp their mould on the finish, are ripe and butty. This has character, is a striking wine, very full in length. 13.5°. 5,000 b. From 2019. GB £366 12 b i/b Clarion Wines info@clarionwines.co.uk www.clarionwines.co.uk +44(0)208 747 2069. 2032-35 Oct 2016

2014 ()

(casks) dark red-black robe. The nose lingers well, has reserves of potential. There is an immediate air of toast, charcoal and plump black berry, a grilled sideline. The palate runs well, its black fruit having dash and freedom, and showing well just before the close. It could carry a little more flesh. It has a light tannic frame, in keeping with what isn’t a big vintage. The oak on the finish will absorb OK by 2018. 2024-26  Oct 2015


sturdy dark robe. The bouquet is inky, weighty, has a pulp of black berries aroma, some buffed black leather, cocoa. This attacks on fluid black fruit, swiftly takes on crisp, chalky tannins and a menthol thrust. There is plenty here, in a still raw state. The finishing kick and its demands are very Cornasien. Marks for character. 13°. From 2018. 2029-31  Oct 2015


(casks) shiny, bold and dark colour. The nose gives an oaked, black olive ripeness, is grilled, has wide shoulders, real muscle and an inlay of deep black cherry coulis. The palate is well made to combine oak with luscious fruit that has a well-judged sweetness in it. Violet and black berry liqueur fruit feature on the finish. The balance is good – this is a harmonious whole with light mineral cut through it. It has a good, clear finish that bears active fruit. Wait for the oak to be absorbed. This is stylish Cornas. From spring 2016, when it will be getting ready to go places. 2025-27  Nov 2013

2011 ()

(casks) dark. Black cherry, suave air that has a low-key sweetness, plump cassis fruit, loganberry. The palate is round, the fruit gourmand, like a fruit coulis on the table. The tannins are very 2011 – mild. A light violet drift emerges at the finish in agreeable manner, with some licorice tang. Not a big Cornas, but has modern appeal, the fruit clear and rolling. Not far off ready if you seek young, fruited drinking, taken on the up. From mid-late 2013. 2021-23  Nov 2012


(casks) full robe, good shine in it. The bouquet is well-balanced – there is fine oaking, stylish fruit, nothing too advanced or showy today. The attack is measured, with sinew and nerve in the black, tarry and stylish fruit. The oak reverts to the lead role in the final stages. Has an abundant elegance, is long and ends clearly, with violet there. There is a lot of finish, very good balance and persistence. It has a good core, and is typical Cornas inside its oak. From mid-2014. My preferred of their 3 Cornas this year. 2026-29 Nov 2011


(casks) dark, sleek robe, legs down the glass. Oak seasoning is the first impression on the nose, then comes the air of liquid black berries that is subdued by the oak for now, the oak a little green. There is scale to this bouquet, also width. International Syrah on the palate, with oak all over the place. For now there are just brief glimpses of Syrah black fruit, a cherry flavour. It ends carefully, not loose. Intense fruit lies at its heart, and is a bit more accessible on the finish. The fruit is fine – this just needs time, since it is long en bouche. From 2014. 2024-26 Nov 2010


dark robe, black traces; there is quiet class on the nose – blackcurrant fruit that is rather streamlined but persistent, has a licorice curve and mild oaking. The black fruit on the palate has a likeable line of licorice tasting tannin through it. This is modern Cornas, but it is still in touch with the terroir. There is a good lateral wave of late tannins that provide vigour. Good core quality here. The oak needs a little time. Its fruit bubbles away merrily on the aftertaste. From mid-2010. 2020-22 Dec 2008

2006 ()

(casks) dark, black berry robe, with a purple top. The aroma reflects blackberries that maybe been mulled – there is quite a prolonged, sweet core to it, is a gracious nose. The palate has a decent fruit start – the fruit is quite clear, but needs to step inside the wine at the finish. The blackberry fruit is trimmed with some mineral, and a nice thread of tension. The end is rather dry, with slightly powdery tannin. From 2009. 2017-19 Dec 2007


dark robe, combines red and black. Compact, clean fruit nose – tight-knit berries, smoky oak, all quite woven. Oak-flecked, direct fruit on the palate, the core is rich and successful. Its tannins are live and fit in well. Upright wine, but it has sound black fruit and potential. Esp 2009 on. 2020-21 Oct 2007 Previously Dec 2006 ***(*) there is a bit of mineral fencing enclosing the bouquet, and a cherries, red fruits aroma that is quite deep and suave. Grows in a chunky way through the palate, and contains a marked mineral thread that makes it active on the palate. Pretty ripe, pretty big wine. Has a very oaked end, and the tannins demand it being left until 2010. To be bottled April 2007. 2021-23 Dec 2006

2004 ()

quite a wide, black fruits bouquet showing some leather and flowers, too. Raspberry fruits starts the palate, with a temporary, succulent moment early on. Becomes more earthy late on, revealing damp soil, truffle effects with some minerality. Holds up pretty well through the palate. 13.5°. 2016-18 Dec 2006 Previously April 2006 **** sappy, notably earthy bouquet with a violet underlay, there is game-animal floating here. Palate steers a careful course between fruit and tannin, is an expressive wine. The flavour rolls on well, its fruit is mineral-flecked on the finish. Nicely plump middle moment, and no excess baggage here. Elegant, round wine, its fruit lasts well. Toasted, oak finale. Esp 2008 on. 2018-20. April 2006


(cask) grilled, oaked aroma. Supple start, then tannins direct it. Clean Cornas, has warmth, fullness. 2008 on. 2018-19

2002 ()

bright, showy robe; cautious black fruit aroma, more expressive by 2007. Brewed, earthy black fruit palate, bit reduced. Decent width, runs on well enough. Hedgerow fruit aftertaste, some elegance. 2006-07 on. 2016-19

2001 ()

live raspberry/earthy nose. The attack is a bit stretched. Clean, modern Cornas. Plums, quite chunky end. Lacks true core. 2007 on. 2016-18

2000 ()

some pepper on a compact bouquet, granite freshness, too. Good accessible red fruits, with fair depth. Violets on finish. Stylish, clear-cut wine. 2014-17


meaty, compact fruit nose. Robust, vibrant cooked fruits. Rich/mineral finale, well textured. Good style and character. 2015-19

1997 ()

very intense colour. Quite square, peppered bouquet. Closed, nicely firm palate. Chunky. Good length, dry finish as yet. From 2002-03