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The Wines

1950s Syrah from 0.4 hectare on Combe (ex Bernard Maurice vineyard), usually destemmed, 3-week vinification, pumping overs, then light cap punching, aged 60-80% 1-5 year ex-white wine 400-litre oak casks (228-litre oak casks until mid-2010s), 20-40% vat (the vat serves to keep more fruit in the wine) 16-18 months, fined, unfiltered, harvest sold since 2018 since no successor to take over from him, 2-2,500 b

2018 No Rating

HARVEST SOLD FROM NOW ON

2016 ()

dark red; black cherry fruit features in a live opening, blackberry with it, a drift of violet-flowers. It’s a careful start. The palate gives black cherry fruit with pretty ripe tannins in tow, is a bit streamlined, but has core. It shows oak towards the finish. There is some intensity in the fruit, and the close is lip smacking, aromatic. It needs to deliver more fruit; the tannins are ripe, to its credit. Bottled March 2018. 14.5°. From 2021. 2035-37 Dec 2018

2013

dark red robe. Pine and spice front nose with tar and blackberry –  a pretty wild start. This is crunchy, rocky wine, and rather rustic via peppery, angular, dry tannins. There is a small orb of gras at its centre. Time will help, but it lacks elegance, is raw. Has a dark berry flavour, with licorice and cocoa. The tannins are a real obstacle. From 2018, cross your fingers. 13.5°. Bottled early April 2015. 2023-24  Dec 2015

2007

dark hue; has a forward aroma – blackberry with a sweet top air, ripe berries and something of the damp forest. There is upright black fruit at first on the palate, with a pebbly tension in it; it tapers, and doesn't carry to the finish. The fruit is low-key, and is kicked along the road by its oak. It finishes on mild red fruits. No fireworks wine, more or less OK. 2014-16 Dec 2008

2006

steady red robe; one of the more “pure” Cornas, red fruit aromas – comes with a trace of game, some gummy reduction also. The palate has clean, rather arm's length red fruit, with a slow gain in depth. Licorice flavour, quite ripe tannins at the end. The length is steady. Not a wine that is really involving the drinker as yet. From spring 2010. To 2016. Dec 2008

2005

bright red with some black in the robe; has a red berry aroma of elegant width. The palate fruit is live and clear-cut, and pursues a steady path. Its late tannins are peppery, but the richness can take care of them within two years from now. This is restrained throughout – the house style shows up in this. Esp mid-2009 on. 2016-17 Dec 2007

2004

brewed, fully laden bouquet, some tar and plenty of potential, just a little dusty and mineral on the top note. Striking early fruit that is clean and measured, with a little sweetness, and it continues well. Nicely made, genuine wine, in the STGT vein. A good example of an outlying zone in its tidy flavour and feel. Vrai vin. Esp 2008 on. 2017-19 April 2006

2003

quite bright red/black colour. Cassis, black jam and herbal aromas, nicely broad. Tasty black fruit, violet flavour. Fruit here reflects how 2003 Cornas have developed - has gained a succulent side, and continues well. Rounded tannins, and nice black jam finale. Accessible now. Low acidity probably means drink before 2009-10, may get overtly mineral. Dec 2005 2003 Previously (casks) **(*) full robe; well set fruit on bouquet, also violet, herbs, oak. Big, constructed wine, a Californian. Some end minerality, rare for the year. Meaty, full, earthy. Oaked finale. 2008 on. 2019-21

2002

jam fruit/earth aroma; direct, live red fruit, gets chewy,; there is a fair amount here. Best early for its fruit. 2006 on. 2010-12

2001 ()

compact fruit/licorice/mineral nose; clear black fruit, can broaden by 2006, some guts, but typical Cornas restraint. Dark fruit/tobacco end. 2007 on. 2017-19

2000 ()

suave, spiced black fruit, more gutsy with air. Tasty, intense black spiced fruit, oily. Cool, elegant feel, typical minerality. Smooth oak, smoky bacon end. 2014-16