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The Wines

70-75% Grenache, 15% max Syrah, 5% Carignan, 5% Cinsault (mid-1980s) from Oligocene clay soils, yields around 20 hl/ha, hand harvested, 70% destemmed (the 30% of stems sorted by colour, must be yellow), light crush, wild yeasts, 10-15 day vinification, foot cap punching at first, pumping overs, raised 90% concrete & enamel vats, 10% 8-20 year 225 & 228-litre oak casks 21 months (was 75% concrete, 25% enamel vats 24-27 months into early 2010s), unfined, filtered, total SO2 40-80 mg/litre, “aim is for a concentrated but also elegant wine”, originally called L’Oligocène, organic wine, up to 15,000 b

2017 ()

red robe; the nose shows the concentration of thick skins, raspberry liqueur central to it, a strong Grenache influence, with a note of caramel. The palate comes with a coated texture, is notably suave, with drive and length, grounded strength. It’s more coherent than the 2017 La Source, has oxtail, prune flavours, slightly salted tannins which help – bringing some clarity. “The tannin index on this was high this year,” Philippe Gimel. 15°. Bottled end Aug 2019. €19.50 at the domaine. From 2023. 2034-36 Feb 2020


red robe, typical medium depth Grenache hue. White pepper, clear pings come along on the nose, raspberry central to it, dried herbs, warm stones. This has the cool style de la maison, gives a good glide of red fruits with bright tannins, has a spinal shape, some 2016 flesh, just a little, beside it. The close is long, fresh. 14.5°. From 2021. 2031-33 Feb 2019


dark red. I note reduction on the nose, hedgerow fruits, black berries with a panorama of smoke, mystery, potential. The palate carries smoky, dark fruits, oily notes of texture, is a big, stand-up wine, full of heart and vigour. It rocks very freely and lustily, has good drive, way to go. The finish is punchy, so leave until 2020, no hurry. 14.5°. 15,000 b. Bottled Sept 2017. €19. 2028-29 Feb 2018

2009 ()

bottled two weeks ago: firm, bright raspberry red robe; has a reserved, but fine noted bouquet with an underlay of extra density that moves towards chocolate, dark soil. The palate is tasty, and its tannins are ripe, with enough boldness to provide sound support. The start is “dark”, and it has a crunchy interior with black raisin and date in the late flavour. A big wine, but it keeps moving along the palate. It ends with life, and a touch of menthol and licorice. From 2013. 15°. 10,000 b this year. 2020-21 May 2012


bright, dark red. Has a quiet style, menthol-black raisin aroma – this is a discreet nose, but one with presence, also offers smoke, mulberry fruits. The palate is attractively textured – this is a nice, approachable wine that is close-knit, smooth and consistent. It is starting to taste well, drink well, gives friendly drinking. Lamb good with this – it is a bit big for a luncheon, but is suited to relaxed evening occasions. 3,500 b this year. To 2018 May 2012

2007 ()

dark plum colour. Has an animal note, with meat and toast airs, a robust bouquet with notes of prune and date, but it is well-cut, decisive. The palate is well-knit, with better balance than the 2006 – it is more ensemble, more coherent, less wild. There is a tiny note of carbonic gas after half way. Has a good, thorough finish, reaches out well, is stylish and complete. 15,000 b this year. 2019-20 May 2012


full red robe, slight maturity in it. Has a peppery front bouquet, with oily black fruit, also vanilla behind. The palate gives a big charge of spiced flavour – this is a manly wine, a full operator. It has a chocolate, sizzled bacon and nut flavour, a strong sense of prune – it is out of the usual loop. A sit-down wine suited to game, beef. There is a fresh “steel” running through it, and it ends on a tangy note. It needs consideration and careful food pairing – it is not a free drinker, is a bit towards “too much”. To 2019. “2006 is more tannic than 2007”, Philippe Gimel. May 2012

2005 ()

full, broad nose that is in the high octane, baked bracket. The palate is big, and still going (four year old red Ventoux often not the case), without excess dryness at the end. Big and raisiny wine that has been pushed in the cellar. Sip this – nothing more liberal than that. To 2012. March 2009