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The Wines

60-70% Grenache, 10-20% Mourvèdre, 10-20% Syrah, 0-10% Cinsault, 0-10% Counoise (av age 45 years) from stone covered clay-limestone soils, destemmed, 3-5 week vinification, regular pumping overs, cap punching, aged large barrels, 2-4 year 600-litre oak casks (2012 last year with all 228-litre casks, 2014 the first with all 600-litre casks), steel vat 12-15 months, fined, filtered, called Cuvée du Château from 2013, “drink with Provençal prepared shoulder of lamb, 2-3 bottlings, 60-100,000 b


(steel vat/casks) dark robe; roast coffee beans, blackberry mix on the nose, a little mystery in its smoky depth. The palate gives close-knit dark red fruits, with a cautious release of juice on the second half, the tannins leaning towards rocky, compressed. This has a cool note, rather blue fruit, on the finish, and needs time: from spring 2022. The structure is sound, as is the length. 14.5°. 75,300 b. 70% Gren, 10% Syr, 10% Counoise, 10% Mourv. €14. 2035-37 Feb 2020

2017 ()

full, dark robe; the bouquet wells up on a filled, dense amount of sweet-toned black berry fruit, is a certain opening. The palate sequels well, attacks with verve, carrying a sustained run of black stone fruits, touches of tang in the tannins, and a clear, very long close, a hint of menthol there. This is fulsome, on the go Vacqueyras, a very good example of its place. 14.5°. 75,330 b. 70% Gren, 10% Syr, 10% Mourv, 10% Cinsault. €14 is VALUE. From 2021. 2036-38 Feb 2020


very dark robe. The nose is sweet, amply filled with black berry fruits, cherries, hints of licorice. The palate is ripe, gushes rather than runs, offering a supple wave of black fruits with pliant tannins embedded and rolling with the flow. It ends roundly; there’s a little power within, but it loses depth on the aftertaste. It’s a copious, in the instant, open Vacqueyras, on the go already. 14.5°. 75,200 b. 70% Gren, 10% Syr, 10% Mourv, 10% Cins. 2025-27 Feb 2018


shiny red robe. Red-fruited bouquet on red cherries, redcurrants, has some huskiness, florality. The palate introduces clear red fruit, a becoming elegance, delivered with tang, cherry stone style bite within a cosy texture. There’s good purity in the fruit, fine droplets on the finish. This is a restrained, not hefty 2015, which I like. It gives good, cool drinking. Bottled one year ago. 14°. 2028-29 Feb 2018


bright, shiny red. The nose has stone red fruit intensity, a surge of that, red cherries on the go, with a touch of the crystalline. The palate links closely to the nose, red fruits with a clear strike of delivery, a winning purity; it kicks along as it closes, is vigorous. It’s the reverse of the usual 2014-15 relationship here – the 2014 a bigger wine than the 2015 – more spunky, has more drive. It grips tightly, is a wine still en route, is evolving gradually. The tannins are refined, well entered. Decanting advised. It has certainly come together since the vat tasting. 14°. From 2019. 2028-29 Feb 2018 Previously Dec 2015 **(*) (vat) has a pretty full red robe. The nose has a southern, warm climes air led by black raisin, brewed black fruit, some dust, sweet prune. The palate is simple, with compressed juice at its centre. It is traditional in style, its tannins coming with a gummy texture and a note of spirit. A wine for stews and autumn/winter. From mid-2016. It won’t live that long on this showing. 14°. 60,000 b. €11.50. To 2020 Dec 2015 


shiny red colour. The bouquet is spiced, baked, dumb, the fruit withdrawn, hints of red cherry eau de vie. It’s not all together. The palate is a sinewed, tight affair, so is a typical 2013. It only gradually releases its juice, the second half showing more than the attack. It has sound heart for the future; it can become tasty, for example in a large glass around 2022. It has character, can be floral and vary well over time. This is one for the aficionados. 14°. From spring-mid-2019. 2029-30 Feb 2018


Bottle 1: corked. Bottle 2: red robe, a ruby top. Has a sweet red fruit pastille aroma, with a cosy curve to it, easy and pleasing, is very much a 2012. The palate moves with fresh detail, is juicy and appealing, the quality of fruit high, clear. There are touches of geranium, floral and spicing that combine to lend some shade to its sunlight, and vary it. It ends with good grip, is satisfying, up to lamb, duck breast [magret de canard]. It’s discreetly persistent. 14°. 2025-27 Feb 2018


(barrel/vat) dark, shiny robe. There is a full spread to the nose, which has a red meat chunkiness, a solid red fruit aroma, some violet, and a note of eau de vie. The nose isn’t yet on the go. The palate is young, stiff, with imposing strength and firm tannins. The gras isn’t showing liberally. A feet on the ground, thorough wine that needs time. It ends firmly, completely with touches of coffee liqueur. Decant this, and wait – drink from 2015. Has the potential to deliver plenty. 14°. €9.50, good VALUE. 70% G, 15% S, 15% M this year. 2027-28 May 2013

2010 ()

dark red robe, shiny and with legs. This has an earthy, slightly high air, led by black berry fruit, a touch of licorice. This shows good Vacqueyras depth and body, is pretty well-defined, has local nuances. The palate has a shapely debut before a build-up of tannin and intensity, smoked moments. It attacks on spiced black fruit, and is thorough, the tannins not shy on the finish. From late 2014 to allow more fusion of its still quite wild late moments. Solid, reliable Vacqueyras. 14°. 70% G, 15% S, 15% M this year. 2024-26 May 2013

2009 ()

dark robe; broad, grounded nose with faithful garrigue herbs in it, also a leathery angle to its cooked Grenache red fruit – there is weight from prune and beef stock – the bouquet certainly offers a lot. Traditional style Vacqueyras on the palate – it starts boldly, the tannins run up and down, are obvious close to the point of demanding. There is plenty here – get out the hare or the venison. True wine, from its place without deviation. 14.5°. 70% G, 15% S, 15% M this year. 2019-21 Feb 2012


ruby, mature robe; medicine, mineral nose laced with some prune and rose in the aroma. Dried fruits, fig flavours with some richness. Overall, it is tiring – drink now. March 2005