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The Wines

60-75% Grenache, 18-35% Syrah (early 1980s-early 1990s), 0-7% Mourvèdre, 0-3% Carignan (1960s), Counoise (mid-2000s), Clairette, Viognier, no Cinsault since mid-2010s, 75-100% destemmed, 4-5 week concrete vat vinification, spaced out pumping overs, cap punching, part vat emptying/refilling, concrete vat raised 7-9 months, unfined, unfiltered, organic wine, 30-40,000 b

2017 ()

bright, clear red. Has a red-fruited, clear cut bouquet, notes of dried herbs, licorice. The palate has a dusty trails texture, very 2017, with smoky red fruits, plum fruits, and keen, crisp tannins along with a power surge on the finish. It’s a shade high on degree, and requires red meats, for example. It’s fibrous, austere, narrows down, is disappointing. I’d like more pleasure. 14.5°. To 2024 Oct 2020

2016 ()

healthy red robe. Has a nicely curved aroma, a swell elegance, soft raspberry fruits in the air, with a discreet note of spicing, a touch of cocoa, smoke, small floral notions. The palate rolls along in a classic 2016 vein, the texture soft; it has a very different profile to the 2015, presents well on the elegantly fruited attack, but needs to open and emerge more on the second half. It offers, then backs off . . . but there’s good quality juice, with charm, savoury notes. The balance is good. Discreet tannins add grain to the close. Decanting advised. 14.5°. 32,000 b. Bottled early Sept 2017. “It was very open, even after bottling, but the moment it hits winter cold, it closes,” Corinna Kruse. From mid-2018. 2024-25 Feb 2018

2015 ()

shiny, quite full red. Has a spiced, busy, well varied bouquet that comes with floral, musky touches, a little intrinsic power. The palate gives an good, immediate charge of prune, dark stone fruits, free spicing; the tannins have slight firmness, bring a bit of dryness on the close. This is proper table wine, one with character – a roast rib of beef ideal. It’s tasty in mid-palate, holds lots of peppery freshness. 14.5°. 35,000 b. Bottled Aug 2016. 25% stems included this year – “they were magnificent”, CK. 2023-24 Feb 2018

2014

shiny dark red. Has a live, open, running air of raspberry, blackberry, lots of life – this has real vim. The palate delivers red fruits and reaches out well and freshly. The fruit quality is good and pure, resembles cherries. This has lots of appeal, is real w.o.w. wine, highly drinkable. It gives pepper and licorice late on. This is lovely wine. It has a latent Trias soils glow and depth on the finish. Bottled Sept 2015. 14.5°. 2020-21  Dec 2015

2013 ()

red robe. Has a stewed fruits aroma, black cherries, licorice, black cherry. The palate gives rolling blackberry fruit with keen tannins, an assured depth present. It is live and straight down the line. It grips with a firm, measured close, has a flavour of soaked cherries and rocky tannins there. It is till tight, and lacks the Grenache for an easier texture and more obvious gras richness. Drinks with grills, beef. This has a serious structure. 14°. The Grenache was down by 15-20% this year, so it is a different wine. From 2017. 2022-23  Dec 2015

2012

shiny, nicely full red. Soft blackberry fruit aroma, an oily essence of liqueur, speckles of garrigue and dust, hints of power. The palate holds red cherry, slightly glowing fruit, its power only just under the surface. It finishes well and completely, the tannin edge apparent. It will sort out its finish. Licorice shows on the aftertaste. It is a bit too warm for free, comfortable drinking. From mid-2014. 14.5°. 2018-19  Dec 2013

2011

dark red, lighter than 2012, slight evolution apparent. Good, mixed pepper-spice box aroma, with tarragon and cinnamon; it has a solar, quite stern outlook. The palate is a firm affair: it gives a block of compact black jam flavour, with licorice and black raisin-tar features. Sturdy, grounded wine that has a tar-pepper, rather demanding and dry exit. Acidity and spirit appear in its peppery late stages. 72% Gren, 18% Syr, 7% Mourvèdre, 3% Carignan, Counoise, Clairette, Viognier. 14.5°. To 2018  Dec 2013

2009 ()

modest red robe; raspberry fruit and jam aroma of some grace and ease in it, along with fennel and dusty terraces blowing in the wind. The red fruit starts on the run along the palate, takes on tannins after half way, ends with a build-up of power, has a solid sign-off. Decant this. Has a spine of power in it. The exit is fresh, tangy. From spring-mid 2012. “It is starting to open – the tannins were very tight. We did a 4 week vinification, and our yield was under 32 hl/ha this year,” Corinna Kruse. Bottled July 2010, 32,000 b this year. 14.5°. To 2016. July 2011

2008

fine red colour. The nose lurks in the glass rather than surges out; there is a force in its red fruit, with pepper-dust influences. Robust, hearty, full start to the palate; it has a knit, entwined nature, with an exit of fresh, menthol style. Has a prominent pebbly-licorice sign-off with that menthol. Genuine, clear, quite powerful. Needs food. 14.5°. To 2014. “We lost 15-20% in 2008 against 2007,” Corinna Kruse. July 2011

2007 ()

pretty red with hints of black in the robe. There is the snap of limestone as it were, a tang of clarity, accompanying the black fruit, which has a nice inner ripeness. As it airs, a violet side is revealed. There is a secure roundness to the palate black fruits, and the length is good. Calm, sympa wine that runs on well. This has local feel, is definitely a mini-Beaumes-de-Venise red, has local feel, is STGT. Good, pure wine, and I note that the finish is measured instead of being demanding, as it used to be in previous vintages. 14.5°. 2012-13 Feb 2009

2006 ()

modest light purple robe; warm, red berry aroma – suggests the depth of mulberry; its intrinsic power comes through in a baked, almost honeyed sub-air. The palate has this zone's robust feel and red fruit taste – there is that hum of power in it, rendering it compact and firm. A broad wine, its tannins are well inset. This is like drinking the produce of parched outcrops; it is a wine for food – too big to drink on its own. Good with a dish such as rack of lamb. The finish brings out herbs, and a final tang of licorice and aniseed. It integrates and steps up a gear as it airs – and is certainly up to sound Beaumes-de-Venise red wine quality. 14.5°. 2011-12 June 2009

2005 ()

brewed, warm bouquet, with floral and candy airs in it. There is good clarity in the palate fruit, and it holds up a supple texture all through. The taste is like fruit gum sweets, and cherry fruits. This is well above average. Good now. To 2009. 14.5°. March 2007

2004

pretty, bright purple; clear, full-fruited aroma that is pure and well-defined. A solid wave of clear fruit starts the palate; it continues well, on to a peppery finale. The palate is broad, and the wine has nice grip. The fruit is simple, enjoyable, but it is a touch dry on the finish. 14.5°. To 2010-11. Feb 2006