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The Wines

53-65% Grenache (1930s-1970s), 35-47% Syrah (1970s) from galet stone covered red clay-limestone soils on Les Garrigues de l’Étang (nord), hand harvested, part destemmed, 25-35 day concrete vat vinification at up to 30°C of varieties & plots separately (in 1990s-2000s crop left as long as possible for max ripening), destemmed, 25-35 day concrete vat vinification, part vat emptying/refilling at start, daily pumping overs, concrete vat raised min 18 months up to 24 months, unfined, can be filtered, first wine 1998, organic wine, 10-13,000 b

2017

quite a dark robe. The bouquet centres on black cherry fruit with a tone of 2017 sweetness, a black coffee note. The palate gives a savoury run of black fruit matter, the tannins powdery, polished, well orchestrated. It finishes with drive, makes a good statement of Vacqueyras, notes of black olives on the aftertaste. It is marked by its Syrah for now. 15°. 10,000 b. 54% Gren, 46% Syr. €15. From 2022. 2036-38 Feb 2020

2016 ()

very dark robe. There’s an oily, southern take on the bouquet, a glisten in its black fruits, a fragrant ripeness. The palate is charming, bears elegant black fruits and content, with a good spring of freshness running through it. The finish builds in strength, and is still on the outside via its rock-strewn tannins. This will be very good in a large glass around 2022-23. It has good heart, and flair. The fruit rocks well as it closes – it has a great finish, full of beans. From late 2019. 15°. 10,000 b. 60% Gren, 40% Syr. From 2020. 2030-31 Feb 2018

2014 ()

(vat) dark plum colour. The nose is jaunty, leads on cooked Victoria plums, an inherent Grenache spot of sweetness, a note of blackberry coulis in behind. The palate runs with clear black berry fruit and picks up some clear tannins as it goes. This drinks freshly, in the eye of the vintage, thus. It is enjoyably expressive. 14.5°. 53% Gren, 47% Syr. 10,000 b. €14. From mid-2016. 2021-22  Dec 2015

2013 ()

(vat) bright purple colour. The nose is firm and discreet. Dark fruit and spice feature on the palate, which has a slight Dundee cake, rich, savoury nuance. Has a firm tannic tramline. This is powerful in style, and gives a slight alcoholic glow on the finish. It will need a bit of time to settle. 15°. From 2017. 2023-24 JL Dec 2014

2012

(vat) full robe. Pepper, garrigue dust first aroma, along with licorice – these aromas prevail over its inset black berry fruit, and there are also game and meat stock notions. This nose can be stylish. The palate has a cooked fruit strength in an assertive start, before a resilient, tenacious finish, where there is still a hum of power. The finish is broad, palpitating and shows a southern charge, flavours of tar and Christmas cake, a surge of oak. It breathes heat on the aftertaste, holds inky, garrigue herbs, menthol in its fullness. The finish is demanding for now. From spring 2016. 54% Gren, 46% Syr this year. 10,000 b. €13.50-14.00. 2027-28  Dec 2013

2011 ()

(vat) dark robe – a dark red with a black centre. Blackberry springs out on the nose, with vanilla behind, smoke and charcoal. The nose has a grainy foundation, and is wide, quite forceful. The palate mixes prune, cooked black fruits, brings in spice and power towards the finish, ending on a simmer of garrigue strength, licorice, atr. Its alcohol is on the limit, a spirit note that is evident right on the aftertaste – hence it glows on the finish, where there is a note of cooked plum, Grenache flavour. It may degrade as its alcohol pushes forward over time. From mid-2014. 15°. €13.50. 60% Gren, 40% Syr this year. 2019-21  May 2013

2010

plum, dark red robe, matt top. Coffee-prune first aroma, along with nutmeg, smoke, stewed plums – the nose is wide and abundant, is inviting, with lots on offer. The palate is savoury, deep, has a lusty, traditional intensity, attractive gras seasoned with herbs such as laurel on the finish, with smoke and tar. This has advanced a little, but carries local truth and will be full of running for a few years now. STGT style, has a good, complete finish, with late pepper. Good with jugged hare, daube of beef. 15.5°, obviously high. 2024-25 May 2013  Previously Feb 2012 ***(*) very full robe; broad, imposing nose that offers plenty of brewed black fruits, wee mint traces, laurel. It gives the impression of beating sun on plains. The palate is solid, insistent, has late lift, a little florality. A broad, coated wine whose tannins are vigorous and drive it towards the finish. A big numero, indeed, its feet firmly planted on the ground. From 2014. 15.5°, and probably near 16°. 2021-22 Feb 2012

2007

filled-up robe; Inky, full, lateral nose that is really complete – shows a prune air, has great depth and is both classy and promising. The palate is similarly full, is cohesive – a wine of standing and structure. Classy, modern and really good. Shows light oak, late toasted moments. It is long on the palate. It will be more purely local from 2012. 2019-21 July 2010 Previously Nov 2008 ***(*) darker robe than Signature 2007, legs down the glass – full dark red, a little black. Confirmed red jam fruit aroma, deep, but with lively red fruit, has snap in it. Compact palate with a bustle of red fruit in it, a wine that is more complete than the Signature, has more filling, runs along well. Clean-fronted fruit leads to a peppery, nutty end. From spring 2010. Intense spot of tar on the finish. 2017-18 Nov 2008

2006

steady red, some evolution. Baked fruit such as plum, tang in it – the nose is developing interesting second aromas, has some fundamental, damp airs as well. The palate is at a stage of evolution where prune, smoke, brandy cake enter the equation. Still has live end tannins, with a certain snap in them. The length is OK. From late 2009. To 2014-15 Nov 2008

2005

dark berry fruit with a minted, but ripe nature on the bouquet, also some olive, herb, laurel influences. Live fruit with good grain on palate, gets a punchy character late on. Thorough wine with a potent side. Nutty, young aftertaste. From late 2008. 2014-16 This was filtered March 2007

2004 ()

full, dark robe; berry jam aroma, with some game and violets mixed in. Nice and full palate, this has a good fruit content with a rounded finish, but also some power. Rather savoury aftertaste, but the tannins are well evident on the finish. Best left till mid-2008. 2012-14 Not filtered March 2007

2003

the bouquet has an upright nature, but the core is full and herbal, led by Maraschino cherry. The palate fruit holds some freshness, more than the Signature 2003. This is a wine of standing, with accomplished fruit and good tannin in support. Persists, is tasty and has local feel – is STGT. Tarry finale. I can see a good future ahead. Filtered this year. 2012-13 “This was more marked by the vintage with its punchy nature and drier tannins until Feb 2005,” Patrick Gras. July 2005

1998 ()

there is a dry air to the nose – prune and leather present, and black fruits emerge with aereation. Good, stylish wine, mixing density and elegance, with a good mid-palate of berried fruit. Restrained, dry-toned wine, gentle and typical of Vacqueyras from the better domaines. 2008-10 May 2001