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The Wines

60-75% Grenache (1950s, mainly from Les Pendants, with Les Garrigues nord, very clay soils), 15-20% Mourvèdre (1970s, Les Saintes Papes), 15% Carignan (1950s, Les Saintes Papes), 0-20% Syrah (late-1960s, included until 2011), 20-33% of Grenache whole bunch, 50-100% of Carignan whole bunch, (late-1960s), rest of crop destemmed, low temperature fermentation, a few pumping overs, cap punchings, 18-22 day vinification, assembled in spring, then raised 2-10 year 550-litre casks 12-15 months, then vat 2 months, unfined, unfiltered, first wine 1989, 4-13,000 b


full red colour; there is prolonged depth on the nose, prune, black olives, roast coffee beans. The content absorbs the palate like a sponge of bounty, the 2016 fat and appeal, with excellent length and fresh drive. This is really well fuelled. It’s smoky and interesting, a grounded with airborne hover as well - great. From 2021, but it’s most entertaining now, even if it’s not showing all its cards by any means. “Acidities were very good and high this year, which made the wine,” Damien Vache. 14.5°. 2040-42 Feb 2019

2015 ()

(used 600-litre cask, Gren, Mourv, Cari) very dark red robe. The nose gives an extreme essence of grape, a thick coulis aroma, with lees in evidence. It has a blackberry hearty, is a bouquet very much of several layers. This is rich, sensuous on the attack, with thorough gras, a real upholstery of content. The tannins are ripe, prominent, persist, and crunch the finale. 10,000 b. From spring 2019. 2030-32  July 2016


bottled 1 month ago: has a red robe with some shine to attract. The nose is perky, leads on red berries such as mulberry, delivered in a coulis style. Smoke and herbs such as rosemary also feature. The palate casts a winning and relaxed theme of red fruits that glisten from the old vines – there is a suave and continuous sève or sap in it. It takes on graphite, rocky moments, ends on chewy, interesting diversity and good pockets of fine, measured depth of juice, a provocative finish that shows the good quality of the tannins and the quality of the old vine fruit hand in hand. It isn’t yet as one, but holds good promise. Blueberry fruit comes through on the close. From spring 2018. 14.5°. 2027-29  July 2016

2013 ()

just 4,000 b and a mere 10 hl/ha this year after the Grenache coulure: quite a dark red robe. This has an overt Grenache from a cool year aroma – much pepper, some low-key raspberry and airs of soft flowers, the last from the old vines. The palate offers gras off the bat, a thorough coating of it. There are fringes of herbs such as thyme, and late licorice. This is garrigue wine. It is interesting, has hidden corners, and builds well as it goes, reaching a crescendo of dark berry fruit, prune on the finish. There is a real classic run along the palate. A wine for the thinkers. It has real inner strength, character. 14.5°. “Cool vintages often bring out the south, the garrigue,” Damien Vache. From mid-2018. 2032-33 July 2016

2012 No Rating

Mourvèdre: dark red; spiced, rather full air, mulled fruits present. Spice and tannins are absorbed in the palate’s gras that is easy, fleshy. 13.5°. Syrah: full robe; good fruit in a jam-like style, with spice on the nose. Tasty, scented blackberry on palate, length and freshness here. Good - **** quality. Oct 2012


good, solid red colour. Cassis, smoke, tar, violet and smoke in an appealing, active bouquet. The palate wears a coat of black berry, with real good gras at its centre. This has tasty depth, rolling tannins that are absolutely great – they are more supple than 2005 and 2009s’ tannins. The flavour at the centre resembles blackberry paste, and its juice lingers at the end, which is fresh. Spices are coming through. All roads to this delicious roundabout of wine. From mid-2014, for example. “2010 is all in equilibrium – you didn’t need to interfere with the vats,” Christian Vache. 14.5°. Bottled June 2012, 9,400 b this year. €17 at the cellars, great VALUE.  2024-26  Oct 2012

2009 ()

rather full red-plum colour. Oily aroma – there is depth in the nose, cooked fruits, Christmas spices. It is dark, but has movement and freedom. Prune-blackberry fruit on the palate, a note of tobacco with wired in tannins, and a very attractive floral entrance after half way, leading to licorice on the end. Has a powder-grain, tar finale. The really tasty mid-palate hits the mark with sweet appeal - it is right on the mark, gives a blast of pastille. Really ace drinking. 14.5°. 9,400 b this year. 2021-22 Feb 2012

2008 ()

dark red, mauve-purple top. Rather deep-seated bouquet – a collective bundle of black fruit, good prune with cocoa in the air. The palate starts on a tight bundle of black fruit, with a dash of licorice and well-founded matter in its later stages, a growing tannin and depth. A very valid 2008 – not a victim of the vintage at all, an achiever. Ends on secure tannin, is a shade firm for now. From 2012. 14.5°. 2019-20 July 2010

2007 ()

(7 year old 550-litre cask) bright robe; reductive but nice, mild aroma that is harmonious and charming. The palate fruit kicks off with life, is smoothly textured and persists quietly. From second half of 2009, this will be accessible, but drink especially from late 2010 on this showing. A wine that will please, not pose questions. 12-14 years. Its 14.5° is well surrounded. Jan 2008

2006 ()

(2 year old 550-litre cask) bright, dark robe of purple and black. The aroma is rendered upright, rather stiff from its oak – there is quite supple fruit within, squeezy black fruits. Moderated palate, with charming gras, and is round at the end – is as one with its tannins that need a little time. Finely toned finish here. 14 year wine. Jan 2008

2005 ()

nice, genuine, full red robe; the first aroma reflects licorice and pepper, then some compact, bound-up cherry comes along – this is a balanced bouquet. Red fruits start to the palate, with a texture that is oily. Nice tannin present, which it needs to direct it along the second stage of the palate. Round finish – this is a sunny, balanced wine. It is away from what most people perceive to be typical Vacqueyras, and strokes rather than punches. Not especially long-lived – drink to 2013-15. Jan 2008


suave, soaked cherries aroma with some notable herbal influences, hint of underlying heat, alcohol. Soft, full black berry fruit, this a wine of rolling continuity. Shows licorice and great clarity at the end, where there is more black berry and a smooth, dark chocolate finish. 2018-20 March 2007


oily, sustained, rather extracted nose with a bosky side. The palate has somewhat techno style fruit, but will be better and more varied in its second phase of evolution, around 2008. Has richness, but now is upright in shape. The finish is sleek and peppery. From 2007. 2013-14 July 2005

1998 ()

the robe is still full; there are nutty, oily, tar aromas in a bouquet that has plenty to give, more to show. Has an attractive, tasty attack – a berried flavour, with cut. The fruit is clean-cut, and still pretty woven. Does not carry the full garrigue heat, is more restrained than that. Has evolved very well – a testament to the intrinsic quality of the grapes. Drinks well now. 2014-16 Sept 2005

1997 ()

great evolution on the bouquet – damp with coffee, spice here. The palate shows tea and gentle warmth; lovely roundness with a sweet cinnamon, plum flavour. Now to 2007-08. March 2005

1996 ()

cool glint in the aroma – jam fruit with cut. The palate has a good, expressive start, showing flowers and scented red fruit: this is very good Grenache with the mini-austerity of Vacqueyras in it, the drier style offering off the garrigue. Drink in autumn time – game or fowl. Beau wine, with pleasing freshness. To 2009. March 2005


matt plum robe with a ruby top. Smoky, bacon and game aroma that is fresh. The palate is grainy from its tannins, but has some richness – is good and expressive. Warms nicely towards the finish, a good drink. To 2011. March 2005