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The Wines

80-95% late 1950s Marsanne, 5-20% Roussanne (1970s), (before late 2010s was 95% Marsanne, 5% Roussanne also from Les Murets), from 50% La Beaume, Diognières, Murets, 50% La Pierrelle, varieties co-fermented, raised 25% new, 75% 1-2 year 228-litre Allier & Tronçais oak casks 22-24 months, “complexity only arrives after 15-16 months of cask raising”, 3,000-4,500 b

2014

bottled one month ago: shiny full yellow robe. Cooked lemon, stylish nose which is nicely airborne, and has good depth below. Guava, orange zest also come with some bright toasting. The palate bears supple, willing gras richness, runs with a fleshy content; there is a tang of ctrus towards the finish, a little floral nudge, acacia flowers and nuttiness. There are salted dabs along the palate. I find this sound, but not striking; it will be better with some age. It is under its recent bottling now, in a quiet stage. I would leave it until 2020 – it will rise to **** over time. 13°. 80% Mars, 20% Rouss. 4,500 b. 2030-32  July 2016

2011 ()

(casks) yellow colour, some green. Melted butter, lime, white raisin and a dollop of vanilla-oak on the nose; there are also airs of coconut, candy, white fruit jam. The palate has a white peach-white raisin debut, is oily and almost oxidative in nature. It resembles an amontillado sherry, with a taste of banana flambé and prominent oak applied – I am not sure how adroitly, since the oak suppresses the vineyard flavour by some way. Leave until 2016-17, all because of such intense oaking. This can improve a little, probably by the time the world recession has ended. 2027-28  Nov 2012

2010 ()

(casks) clear yellow, some green tint in it. Soft, rather supple bouquet, has a wholesome curve of ripeness, a Marsanne hazelnut floating top air, a rich underlay, and it is completed by smoke, varnish, a tang of bitter which is typical Marsanne. The palate is well set up by the nose, so it is stylish and ensemble, all together. I like its gras texture, and it has more mobility and flow than the really sunny years. It ends on oak-coconut, toffee, white raisin, plenty going on. This reflects the east side of the hill – Murets, Maison Blanche that zone, well, and is STGT (tasted blind). Good, genuine and rich elegance. The finish is harmonious, mild, precedes a glow on the aftertaste. It may shut down, has good balance, good quality. From 2013. 2027-29 Nov 2011

2004

a minor turn is evident in its yellow robe; has a toffee, caramel aroma, with pockets of oak spice, lime and latent flan – this indeed possesses fragrant potential. The palate has a richly textured start, the richness sustained all the way through. Use of fat, ripe crop here – a wine that comes with a white raisin, vanilla aftertaste. It is wide on the palate, and suited to Vieille France, sauced cooking – sauced fish, and even Asian spices given its stylish richness. Classic, cleanly made, traditional wine that is led by its glycerol; the oak can absorb and is not oppressive on the palate now. Good length. A stable, steady evolution lies ahead. From spring 2010, when the oak will be less apparent on the nose, for instance. Decant it for now. 13°. 2027-29 Dec 2008 Previously April 2006 (cask) ***(*) yellow colour. Prolonged, intriguing aroma - is varied, and its elements aren`t easy to pin down - maybe pineapple, fennel. Refined and rounded texture, pretty classic Marsanne here. Good grip on finish, toast from the oak surfaces. Solid core to this, isn`t a showy wine. Esp 2010 on. 2021-23 April 2006

2003 ()

full yellow robe with gold glints – this is darker than the 2004. The bouquet is headed by its oak for now – the cask effect sits on top of a thickly woven couch of baked white fruits. The nose persists, and offers a long life ahead, and greater variety of aroma only if left until around 2012-13. As implied by the nose, the palate is sturdy: there are peach, nut flavours overlaid by the oaking. The oak is the main feature on the aftertaste. A wine that is deeply clad in still tight, compact matter but there are two implications – the first being that the oak should play a lesser role, the second that this year the crop is not from the best sites, or that they suffered – it lacks high quality grape intensity. It is led by the vintage imprint, and by its raising, rather than the vineyard. 13.5°. 2026-28 Dec 2008 £22.17 per bottle in bond

2001

reserved aroma, some weight. Peach and pebbly fruit flavour, refined. Fair length. Hints of white pepper/pear/licorice. I`d like more guts. Oak on top still, there´s almost a tannic finish. Esp from 2007. 2013-15