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The Wines

60% Grenache, 25-30% Carignan, 10-15% Counoise (late 1970s) from S/S-E facing sandy, brown clay-limestone soils, destemmed, cool maceration, then part vat emptying/refilling, fermented at 24-28°C, cap punching, pumping overs, concrete vat raised on fine lees 6-8 months, unfined, filtered, organic, biodynamic wine, a tree can be planted thanks to a bottle, see www.elzeard-vin.fr, 13,000-30,000 b


shiny dark red, purple tints; the bouquet charms thanks to its sunny curve of aroma that mixes dried herbs with blackcurrant fruit, all neatly presented. There’s a little smokiness. The fruit purity stands out on the palate, the blueberry fruit with notes of tar-tannin, licorice accompanying it as it runs with calm continuity. This is bang on the money Côtes red, a pleasure to drink with its keen clarity, the length in shape to allow red meats into the dining equation. The freshness, a slight vegetal touch, contributed by the Counoise is very helpful. It’s a w.o.w. wine par excellence. 13.5°. 13,060 b. 60% Gren, 25% Cari, 15% Counoise. €9 at the Château. 2024-25 Nov 2020

2018 ()

shiny plum red robe; the bouquet carries a vegetal signature, a cool presence of plum fruit with a smoky inlay, suggestive of a vintage that wasn’t sunswept come harvest time. A hint of rose-floral enhances its appeal with subtlety. The palate gives a comfortable filling of Grenache plum fruited-content with briskness, a linear shape in the tannins. The aftertaste is spiced. It’s a genuine Côtes, suited to lamb cutlets, for example, mushroom dishes. The length is sound. 13.5°. 13,060 b. 60% Gren, 25% Cari, 15% Counoise. €9 at the domaine. 2023-24 Oct 2020


dark red. There is good density on the nose, a sturdy aroma of mulled fruits with a little oak. Morello black cherry is its heartbeat, with outliers of dried herbs, thyme. The palate rolls with a black-fruited, Syrah inspiration, and ripe, tasty tannins right in the mix. The finish is well juiced. It’s full of life and appeal, a real fruit fest, the fruit quality appealing, abundant. This gives w.o.w. drinking, will light up drinkers’ glasses. It has good, fresh length, and the fruit is dashing, full of verve and vim it is. 13.5°. 2020-21 July 2017

2014 ()

dark red colour. Has a pulpy, mulled black fruits aroma with plenty of quite sweet heart, a definite ring of the warm south about it. The palate is marked by tarry tannin that accompanies the black cherry flavour, finishing in a driving smoky sign-off. Good persistence. Authentic, big time. 13.5°. 60% Gren, 25% Cari, 15% Counoise. 13,000 b. Bottled July 2015. €6.50. From mid-2016. 2020-21 Oct 2015   

2012 ()

good dark red. Tangy black fruit aroma with a gamey depth, an oily and ripe note, smoky bacon present. The palate is solid, even chunky, perhaps from Carignan or Mourvèdre. It offers a wide and spiced run of spiced black fruit along the palate, and finishes on a firm note, a clack of grip as the fruit draws back. Drink with lamb, pasta, roasts, grills. There is a good back lining to this. From 2014. 13.5°. VALUE AT €6. To 2018  May 2013

2007 ()

solid, dark robe. The bouquet is chunky and has dimension, and lies in wait, possessing enough depth to show future potential. For now, it is broad, with some cherry airs, and is bright and beckoning. There is good depth on the palate – the fruits gets off to a clean start, and then it continues well, on to a herbal, licorice summary – that little tannic and mint snap late on works well. The clear texture lasts all through. This is a structured wine, with good late heat, STGT in style. 13.5°. 2011-12 Feb 2009


raspberry red robe; has a mulled, slightly gamey aroma, with wild red berry fruit present. It shows some character, and is not dully mainstream. The shape is broad, and after one hour of air it becomes more reductive, strangely (the air should dispel the reduction). The palate starts with a grip of black fruit; there is a live thread of tannic acidity here, and it ends on a clear, slightly charcoal, crisp delivery. There is a red cherry, vibrant little burst of late fruit. This can drink solo, on its freshness or would be good with salads, grilled meats, meat spaghettis. The finish is enclosed, and this can live on some more. 13.5°. 2011-12 July 2008