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The Wines

mainly purchased crop with some Chapoutier grapes, 97% Syrah, 3% Viognier from both Brune & Blonde zones, iron, mica-schist, schist soils, destemmed, 3-4 week open oak vat vinification/maceration at up to 33°C, wild yeasts, daily cap punching, aged 80% oak casks (12% new oak, the rest 1 and 2 year 228-litre oak casks), 20% steel vat 14-16 months, first called Les Bécasses in 1998, unfined, filtered, 30,000 b

2016 ()

(casks) dark red colour. The nose has a broad, open aroma of ripe black fruits, a low-key damp leaves, mineral and dark chocolate association. It’s advancing faster than many of its 2016 peers. The palate is spiced, has a cooked red fruits flavour, plums and strawberry jam and smoke all furled together. The finish involves rocky tannins that grip tightly. It’s an unadorned Rôtie, with the pared back New Wave tendency that is à la mode in the big houses. Allow until 2020 so it can regain some flesh, expand away from this imposed tightness. 2030-32 Nov 2017

2015 ()

(casks) full red robe. The nose gives grilling, hints of toffee-oak, a black cherry interior. It’s unfurnished for now. The palate holds cool, blueberry fruit with no hesitation from its tannins and their oaky cut. It’s streamlined, a little spare and strict for now. Time may amplify it for the better. From mid-2018. 2027-28 Oct 2016

2014

(casks) dark robe. The nose is broad, filled, bears an air of mulled black berry fruits that come with a copious, open side to them. The palate is more dense than many, with a roll of gras and flexible tannins that fit in well. The ground work is promising. The aftertaste is tasty, a little sweet. From mid-2018. 2027-30  Oct 2015  

2013

(casks) dark robe. Has a typical Rôtie nose that reflects a shapely dark berry, seasoned by a delicate note of primrose flowers, suggestive of an elegant wine. Indeed, the palate is furnished with attractive, rolling dark red berry fruit and some typical, slightly powdery 2013 tannins. It is a fragrant, light touch wine, has a slim beauty about it, is Belle, not Beau. It has a very precise, clear, detailed finish. From 2017. 2025-28  GB £180/6 bots in bond The Wine Society +441438 740 222 www.thewinesociety.com Jan 2015

2012

(casks) shiny, dark robe. Smoked, closed but lucid potential on the nose, an underlay of fine black fruits, loganberry and blackberry, nutty and grilled airs in the mix. The palate swirls with polished, clear black fruit, bolstered by oak and ripe tannin towards the finish. Still very young, going well, has Côte-Rôtie cut and mineral from the northern zone. It will be in good shape from 2016. It quietens towards the finish. The finish is full and broad. Its elements are in place to do well. 2024-26  Nov 2013

2011 ()

(casks) steady red colour; soft, fluid fruit, compote of blackberry air on the nose, along with vanilla, tar and licorice – this is open already. The palate has an attractive scent about it – indeed, this is a perfumed wine of mild structure, one that drinks easily, without great heart, and with few demands. Red berry flavour lies at its centre, a mix of strawberry and plum. There is low-key acidity on the finish. Short-term wine from a lesser vintage. It is light wine that lacks depth, and you can only go so far on aromatics. From 2014. 2020-21  Nov 2012

2010 ()

(casks) dark black plus purple. Black berry fruit air seasoned with mint and pepper, fresh side airs, a suggestion of black olive, violet. Blackberry-blackcurrant, darkly fruited palate, with oak prominent for now, as if there is a bit of green oak, runs directly, is a bit Spartan. It needs its raising to gain depth. Sound Côte-Rôtie, but other 2010s so far tasted have more flair. From 2015. 2026-28 July 2011

2009 ()

quite dark, a complete red; honey and menthol, brewed black fruits, meaty depth, grilled airs. Solid, lateral, strength wine that is a static presence in the glass. It ends on a square, filled note. A blended style of Côte-Rôtie without lieu-dit precision. From 2015 – the time will help to loosen it and bring forth more nuance. 2025-27. 13°. July 2011 Previously Nov 2010 ***(*) (casks) legs down a full, dark red robe; oily, ripe nose of some sophistication, has tar airs, keeps going, oak hovers. There is a graceful quality to the fruit, which is silken in texture. Tannins emerge on cue, adding dimension and a good little challenge. This is rather raw on the finish, where the oak is away from its matter. It can march on over time, has solid length, but excess oak for now. From late 2013. 2021-23 Nov 2010

2008

correct red colour, no flash depth. Reserved, slightly peppered nose that is quietly harmonious. Decant this for more, or wait until 2014. Fennel and licorice breezes are an attractive addition to it. Has a fine red berry flavour, a cross of mulberry and strawberry; shows extra depth towards the finish, more body there. The final clarity is typical of 2008, and it ends on lip smack, fine notes. It is a bit low on real terroir zap. 12.5°. 2022-23 July 2011 Previously Dec 2009 **(*) (casks) mild red robe; low-key floral and rose with red fruits aroma that is mildly inviting. Soda style debut to palate that presents gently squeezy red fruit, with enough matter to cope with the oak that murmurs from the sidelines. Fine, if a touch dilute. A fragrant wine. From mid-2011. Not forced, which is a merit this year. 2017-18 Dec 2009

2007 ()

(casks) full, quite dark red, a little black in the robe; there is a supple heart to the nose – blackberry fruit, fresh in its mild simmer – it comes with an oak-toffee surround, even dried mango today, with iris flowers. There is a pretty, supple start to the palate – it offers a forward fruit and a soft texture, with its black fruits continuing steadily, a three-quarter weight wine. Its tannins are well inset, but don`t have great density. A wine that will drink easily – is a true reflection of its year. From 2010. 2019-20. Dec 2008

2006 ()

red robe; has a raisin, ripe fruit, touch floral aroma – a little date and toffee in behind, it is quite wide. The palate is easy going, and now approachable. It has a modest content, and lengthens OK. It can gain a bit more with time, although its horizons are essentially modest. The nose could be woken up, so decant if drinking now. It lacks the real class of Côte-Rôtie. 2016-17 Dec 2008 Previously Nov 2007 **(*) (casks) quite dark colour; has a wide, red fruits aroma, a sprinkle of white pepper and a hint of flowers – is broad and appealing. Red fruits start the palate, with an easy, supple texture. Gains tannins as it goes, and ends on a little oak, that makes it dry there for now. Good cohesion, is just a little confected. Leave alone till 2010 so its oak can absorb more. 2019-21 Nov 2007

2005 ()

dark, sustained red robe; raspberry, maybe crème de framboise in the nose that shows some energy. The palate`s red fruits are dashed with a lace of white pepper , and there is tannin at its heart. Not showing max cohesion today, but has a sound core, and a scented red fruit aftertaste. Good late grip, with quite promising roundness to come. From late 2009. Appears to have sorted itself compared to pre-bottle. 2023-25 Jan 2008 Previously Nov 2006 **(*) (casks) quite a dark, matt hue. Raspberry aroma with life in it, sleek oak and vanilla mix. Scented plum start to palate, a supple texture that is straightened by its oak. A savoury wine in the making, though is bit stewed, and risks flattening with age. Some menthol. Bottling can organize it, probably a low SO2 wine, but needs careful handling if it is not to fall down. Question marks surround it now. Review later ideally. 2012-14 Nov 2006

2004 ()

bosky, smoky red fruit aroma, deep enough. Firm early impact on palate, then a little burnt in mid-palate. Live, vigorous finale, with acidity still evident. Can settle, for instance from 2007. Fresh, decisive end, has a really clear fruit and a little earthiness on the aftertaste. 2013-14 April 2006

2002

overt, juicy cassis nose; oak at start, bit taut, brief. Olives flavour. Window to drink around 2006-08.

2001

wide bouquet, potential, soft fruit, will turn gamey. Dark blackberry fruit/oil, quite rich, skips then returns. Upright now, has frame. From 2006. 2012-15

2000

quite soft nose, with red fruits/soil/mushroom; medium-weight, touch plain, but some gras near end. Bit dumb, more in 2005, has improved in last year. Lacks true core. 2010-11.

1999

extreme ripe grape aroma, truffled, potent; soupy texture, round, chocolate style. Raspberry aftertaste. Air clarifies, helps it. From 2005. 2014-15

1998

mushroom, damp leaf, almost Pinot nose, some mineral; quite solid, open wine. Round style, chewy, minty end. Warm wine. Esp from 2004. 2010-11

1997

cool raspberry aroma; palate getting tired, dry tones appear. Drink up

1996

taut, live fruit nose, some game; lacks middle, bit stretched. Fair grip at end, bouquet ahead of palate. 2004-05

1994

some violet/soft nose; big, dark wine; heavier than most, plenty of end tannin. Rich overall. 2008-10

1975

magnum, label reads M.Chapoutier S.A [SA = Société Anonyme], imported by Searsons Wholesale, Dublin: ruby robe, still in the game. Toffee, low-key sweetness runs across the nose, liquid strawberries, a note of fig just like aged Barolo. It is all very neat and Redondo, offers floral rose notes. It’s a very stable bouquet. The palate has a perky debut, a silken texture before more emphasis of crisp red fruits, plums and Christmas spiced boxes. It has the vintage wire and freshness well captured, ends on texture after that, rounded tones. It is very vintage typical – the showery year with heat, and hence the direct tannin. This is honest Côte-Rôtie with a bonny floral comfort wrapped around it. After 40 minutes: the nose deepens, and bulges well, the palate becomes more copious, has a plum flavour, tasty gras richness and fine length. This starts on its raising in the cellar, then goes trit trot back to the vineyard. Nov 2016