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The Wines

Syrah (late 1980s) from Lautaret, granite, stony soil at 250 metres at the top of Châteaubourg, 85% destemmed, 18-21 day vinification, aged 15-30% new (gradual decline), 70-85% 1-2 year 228-litre oak casks 12 months, filtered, first wine 2003 when called Tête de Cuvée, 5,000 b

2017 ()

(casks) thorough, dark robe. The bouquet has a sweet side to it, partly generated by its oaking. The fruit is crushed in nature, blackberry in coulis, almost liqueur, form. The palate holds wavy fruit and content, bendy tannins, gives a steady stream of that fruit towards the finish. It’s not giving its all today, is reserved, toned down, on the late stages. It persists steadily, has inner resources for the future. From mid-2020. 2033-35 Dec 2018

2016 ()

(casks) black-centred robe, purple rim. The bouquet bulges out of the glass, has a brothy, stewed black fruits aroma, a red meatiness in it. The palate is copious immediately, wide and wavy. Its black fruits are seasoned with some black pepper freshness, and the finish brings in menthol, licorice. The fruit is engaging here. 13°. From mid-2018. 2023-24 Nov 2017

2015

(casks) dark robe. The bouquet has a soaked blackberry and oily intensity, a good and curvy, ripe start. The palate runs with smooth black fruit such as cassis, with a more mulberry second wave. It tastes well, is moving into a rounded ensemble. I like its relaxed style. The finish wells up with some dark content, and involves good quality tannins. STGT St Jo here. It’s full of life on the finish. 13°. From 2018. 2024-26 Oct 2016

2014

(casks) dark red colour; the bouquet involves some sweet herbes de Provence, with a more beefy air, the fruit being secondary for now. The palate runs with a liberal black berry fruit, takes on some darker tannins and a little tar towards the finish. This comes well together, and the gras is nice and fluid even on the finish. 13°. From mid-2016. 2021-22  Oct 2015

2013

(casks) dark red robe; liqueur of cassis/blackcurrant, swirling nose, the fruit on the high side, so there are savoury, meat stock airs as well. The debut is supple, the fruit open and rolling, with a note of sweetness. An open book wine, in the here and now. It ends with a juicy delivery. Good for home made meat pies, country dishes. 2020-21 GB £204/12 bots in bond Berry Brothers 0800 280 2440 +44(0)207 022 8973  www.bbr.com Jan 2015

2012 ()

(bottling in 3 weeks) full robe; interesting, “inside the grape” first aroma that gives a good sense of its pulp and sweet core. There are airs of black fruits here, typical Syrah; licorice and light tar add to it. The palate leans towards plumpness, fat, with some reduction in the fruit, hence a wee spot of game. The gummy tannins are in step with it. Genuine, uncluttered, local, STGT wine. The small ball of black fruit and tar on the finish provide a good finish. From late 2014. 20% new oak. 2019-20  Nov 2013

2011

(bottling in 2 weeks) dark robe. Rockabilly mix of blackberry and blueberry on the nose, has a clear, salty tang, a note of licorice – offers immediate, fun potential. The palate gives supple, undulating black berry fruit that is simply drinkable. The tannins add late grain, and need leaving until late 2013. This will charm and drink very well with grills, roast meats, around 2015. There is not a great amount on the second half of the palate. 2019-21  Nov 2012

2010

(casks) dark, shiny robe. Ripe, rather intense first air, backed by oak-tar, smoke traces. Still on the cellar treatment, has some scale. Fruit runs across the palate, is suave, black, has juice that moves into a pocket of ripe, licorice, gummy tannin at the end. A wee bit mainstream. From 2013 to allow fusion and more end fruit and less oak. Decent balance. 2019-20 Nov 2011

2009

dark, shiny modern robe. Slightly grilled air hovering over some compact, rather taut black fruit aromas, along with a waft of animal, and a little crunchy oak presence. Enclosed debut – the frame fences in black fruit berries, but the fruit is pretty flowing and successful, ending on a tasty note. This is set to do well, is clear. Pretty stylish; I wonder if it is made from old vine fruit (tasted blind). From late 2012. 2021-23 Nov 2010

2007

pretty red-purple robe; has a nice aroma, a measured air of black Morello cherries. Cherry fruit that is supple leads the palate, and there is a lovely little entry of tannin. There is very pretty fruit and also assembly with its tannins – it is suave overall. Beguiling wine. 2016-17 March 2009

2006 ()

ripely fruited aroma, carries raspberry liqueur and a little earthiness around it. The palate is a close-knit affair, with black fruits that have a violet tang in them. Pushes on well, with grounded tannins, needs leaving until late 2008, mid 2009 to get the tannins in and settled. Good, consistent flow and length here, with bright fruit leading the charge. 2015-17 Dec 2007

2005

dark robe, black tones; black fruit aroma with some toasting and grilling in it. Displays smoky black fruit with a meaty air – is well sustained. Palate has a good, almost meaty appeal, becomes reserved as it goes. Plenty of depth in this. Rich, quite savoury aftertaste. Fresh towards the finish – the tannins are a bit rampant now. From mid-2008 – the tannins may suddenly settle. 2016-17 Nov 2006

2004 ()

oily, raspberry fruit bouquet, broad and already on the go. Red fruits with mineral tints on palate. Good persistence and character, away from the Superhighway. Charming, round fruit here, with some end kick and freshness. Stylish. 2010-12 April 2006

2003 ()

persistent fruit/grilled, chocolate nose; lingering black fruit, latent power, mineral also. Tannins well within. Strong, but also springy wine. 2008 on. 2016-17