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The Wines

75-85% Grenache, 15-25% Syrah, 0-10% Mourvèdre (av age 40 years) from N-W facing stony red clay, alluvial soils, hand harvested, destemmed, crushed, varieties fermented apart, 3-4 week vinification, part vat emptying/refilling, manual cap punchings, raised 80-90% steel vat, 10-20% new 225-litre oak casks (Syrah), 1-year 600-litre oak casks (Grenache) 10 months (can be large barrel raised 9-12 months), unfined, filtered, 13,500-30,000 b

2018 ()

dark red; the bouquet has a low-key air of blackberry, licorice, more to come. The palate is close-knit, with a steady run of red fruits, engaging tannins that have life, add a spur to the length. There is a notion of herbes de Provence within. The finish is rather wholesome. This has discreet style, and local freshness. 15°. €18 at cellars. From mid-2021. 2036-38 Feb 2020

2017

(vat/casks) very full robe; chocolate-oak leads the bouquet, muscles out other contenders, That renders it sweet, with a black jam layer in behind. The palate is on toffee, sweetness, is oppressive – I find the raising and its additional sweetness unnecessary given the nature of the year, meaning the wine doesn’t have skip in its step. The aftertaste is fat, gummy. Decanting needed. 14.5°. 75% Gren, 25% Syrah. From mid-2021. 2034-36 Oct 2018

2015

(vat/casks) sturdy dark red colour. The nose has a brothy quality, a thick aroma of stewed blackberry, a sweet centre. The palate runs with more freedom, washes along with black, smoky berry fruit, licorice. The finish is fresh, if a little taut, clipped, shows oak out on its own. This is still in the cellar, the frame square, the tannins firm. It’s dark and a little cellar-led. From 2019. 2026-27 March 2017

2014

(vat/casks) dark red colour. The nose has an inky, souped up nature, gives a fat aroma of soaked plum fruits, a little on a high degree, sugared wave. Its content is unconvincing – there isn’t the depth for its degree, which is a feature of some 2014s. The result is a dilute wine, lacks balance. 14°. 85% Gren, 15% Syr. €17.50. From 2017. 2020-21 Dec 2015 

2013

light purple-garnet colour. Red fruit aromas show on the nose, with a herbaceous edge. The palate carries open fruit, the Grenache evident. The tannins are tough and chewy on the finish. This is rather rustic, but acceptable. 14°. Bottled Sept 2014. 20,000 (from 30,000 in 2012). 85% Gren, 15% Syr. €17.50 at the cellars, high. From 2016. 2022-23  JL Dec 2014  

2012

(large barrel, bottling April/May 2014) full red robe; floral noted raspberry air that is a bit reticent, shows a simple appeal, is above all inviting. This gives juicy, nicely generous plum fruit, is typical, holds light dust tannins in close attendance. Iodine and licorice feature on the finish, show the 2012 cut. Harmonious and pretty stylish wine. Its toothsome qualities encourage its drinkability. Keeps going well, picks up garrigue notes as it goes. Good. From mid-2015. 14.5°. 30,000 b, Gren/Syr this year. €12.50 at cellars, £17.99 GB. 2025-27  Dec 2013

2010

bright, dark red. The bouquet is enclosed – has depth but is not out, shows varnish, oily red cherry, a marked bosky note, overall is subdued. The Grenache fruit on the palate is advancing, has a gummy nature, not cleanly cut, lacks freshness. Fair length only, a mainstream wine that lacks the fruit quality of the leading 2010s. From autumn 2012. 14.5°. 2018-19 80% G, 15% Syr, 5% M this year. Dec 2011

2007 ()

Grenache-inspired red robe, paling at the top. Blackberry jam aroma with licorice airs as well as fungal, game notes on the bouquet. The palate has a still young, withdrawn nature, the fruit lying under a compact layer of grilled tannin. It is not showing greatly today, but is a solid wine, backed by Grenache at its core, guts and good fruit, a mature rather than fresh style. Good and gutsy. Decant this. From mid-2011. 2021-22 Dec 2009