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The Wines

93% Marsanne, 7% Roussanne - 90% from Les Murets (ex J-L Grippat vineyard, 1920s-1950s), 10% L`Hermite Marsanne, vinified, raised new oak 28-30 months, no lees stirring, malo completed, made in 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 8-9,000 b

2015

firm yellow robe. Orange marmalade, peach fruit near the stone, hazelnut and tobacco smoke line up on the nose, which is deep and thorough. It’s a good start. The attack is suave, well-textured, glistens with its richness, and lengthens well. There is substance on the close, which serves it well. This is a proper manly, complete Hermitage blanc, long-lived and truthful; beyond the oak lies an STGT wine of good balance. It will be showing well around 2023, and deserves a fine table. 2036-38 Nov 2017

2014 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED: WINE INTO THE HERMITAGE BLANC

2013

healthy shiny yellow robe. The nose is appealing, stylish, has a criss-cross of freshness, citrus influences, tangerine, with soft apricot. It’s well together. The palate presents a bold front of white fruits with a surging wave of inner content. Oak is present in flashes, and isn’t continuous until the finish. This is properly full but also fine southern white, the unmatcheable quality of Hermitage here. It goes long, and fills the palate and mind with nourishment. Both the balance and the likely longevity are good. 13.5°. 90% Mars, 10% Rouss. From 2020. 2038-40 June 2017

2012 ()

quite a full yellow robe. Has a notably elegant, nicely filled bouquet that gives a detailed peach aroma, with peach and ginger, light lime – it is purely expressed, has hidden corners. Vanilla from its oak overrides the palate, with white raisin and flan-apricot flavours. It lives less on young fruit, more on items such as brioche baked bread and nuts, so it is pretty classic in style. This is good and stylish, nuanced wine which offers fine juice towards the finish; it isn’t yet fully together. I like its promise. From late 2016. 2028-30  Oct 2015

2010

medium yellow robe. Apricot-flan, orange marmalade, ginger, licorice and smoky air – the nose is a real mixed bundle, a tight bundle. The palate starts gracefully; it is a wine of the most elegant texture with small outcrops of smoky white fruit, ripe peach. It has a classic reserve about it, and its cautious juice is suggestive of a great middle age in around 12 to 15 years, for example. Long wine that is shapely and fresh, with well-packed content. FINE is the word. Bottled six weeks ago. “This 2010 is very closed, tight. The 2009 is adored by consumers, the 2010 by professionals,” Philippe Guigal. 14°. 2038-40  May 2013 Previously Dec 2011 ****** (new oak cask, malo completed, bottling in Oct 2012) apricot-yellow colour; really bright nose – it is smoky, streamlined, oak runs across the bouquet, but there is a definite sense of fat under, a floating white raisin air. The palate has gras and abundance, is close-kinit, from the off. This is delightful, has great finesse and a very natural fat, absorbing richness. It lengthens serenely – very bon, quelle joie here. In the later stages a fine freshness, a mineral breeze, comes along. Complex, accomplished wine, not for debutant drinkers. Decant this. 8,000 b this year. From 2014. 2033-35 Dec 2011

2009 ()

lustrous full yellow colour, pale gold in it. Wax, beeswax richness features on the nose, an air of hazelnut tart, vanilla, light almond and bonny lemon notes. The palate is abundant, really so, its gras spot on in its roundness and texture, seamless. This is a fat wine, with traces of acidity late on to help its length. It grips with an almond tightness, near bitter, on the finish. A rich, brimming wine that is oily and ripe. A full Hermitage of yore. Decant it. It will evolve slowly on its glycerol and old-fashioned, rich virtues. A tribute to the hot sun of the year. 2032-34  May 2013  Previously Dec 2011 ***** bottled Oct 2011: yellow robe. Wide, solid, firm air – flan and brioche bread, has a garrigue side, fennel and honey, with a drift of white flowers. Has an oily, rich debut, is tightly packed, with a meaty fullness, is really thorough. No chink in the fabric here. It is reserved today, but carries evident fat. It is the bonhomme beside the aristocratic 2010 ex-Voto blanc. Suited to big flavoured dishes. A masculine, packed white Hermitage. From mid-2013. Decant this. 2029-31 Dec 2011 Previously July 2010 ***** (cask) yellow robe; classy air – it is oily, there is a good shine about it, flan richness, crème patisserie. The palate is similar – has a fine, suave texture with supple, rich integration. Slides along well – shows great finesse and texture, its oak well absorbed. Good unctuosity, the real Marsanne glycerol here. Very complete wine. 14.5°. 2030-32 July 2010

2008 No Rating

NOT PRODUCED

2007

full yellow robe; has a sturdy bouquet of real substance, offers pine, oily richness, with nothing going on in a hurry. The palate is full of gras, is suave, with a late tannic line that helps it to move and keep going. It ends on vanilla, with lots of substance, is really long. Still a tight, muscular wine, hardly into its stride. It is fine, and less got up than many current white Hermitages. There is trace of Marsanne hazelnut on the finish. 13°. Previously July 2010 ****(*) yellow robe; baked, buttery, good full nose, cooked fruits and spice. Broad, persistent palate – it is much on its texture at first, but there are good mineral touches late on that direct it well. Has aok on the finale, which is chewy. Good local finish on this – shows an unctuous Marsanne. “It was a rich year. It wasn`t immediately evident as a rich wine, but it is now,” Philippe Guigal. 2026-29 July 2010

2006

(cask) gold glints in a full yellow robe; has a refined nose, with oak obviously evident, but the aroma is measured and steady, bears traces of hazelnut and spring flowers. There is latent depth on the palate, and the white raisin imprimatur of the Marsanne, followed by a salty late tang along with oak. Wide, persistent wine. It is more fine than the beefier 2005, and its smooth texture is pretty. From 2012. Due to be bottled soon. 2027-29 Dec 2008

2005

full yellow with gold present; the bouquet has that extra touch of class over the classic Hermitage – it is stylish, honeyed, waxen reveals verveine – is certainly varied. The palate is also very suave, and comes with a lissom, steady run of fruit, with hazelnut in the taste. Serious and complex wine – in shape it reminds me of the Roussanne Vieilles Vignes of Château de Beaucastel – the mix of elegance, power and complexity. Oak comes through at the end. Fine wine, with latent muscle and power – is interesting, and persistent. Its elegance is fabulous. Finishes on a taste of banana for now. Wait – from 2013 best. 2027-29 Dec 2008 Previously Jan 2008 ***** mid-yellow colour; the bouquet travels easily sideways, is gracious and suggests potential: is very young. Good start to the palate, and carries stylish, well-founded fruit; there is a good centre point of apricot, with hazelnut. The length pushes on well. Is very promising. There is plenty of late cut in the understated richness and good finesse. Oak is still present and needs to absorb on the sustained finish. From 2012. Great balance, fine wine. 2025-28 Jan 2008

2001 ()

full robe; ample, quite lush bouquet - pineapple, exotic, orange peel aromas, heady enough. Rich and profound, with a near-tannic side. Meaty wine, has shoulders. Sound length, heat on finish. 2007-08, expect oak still then. 2019-22