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The Wines

60% Grenache (1938-1996), 25% Syrah (1950s-1996), 10% Mourvèdre (early 1970s), 5% Cinsault, Carignan, destemmed, 10-12 days vinification, soft pumping overs only, vat raised 9 months, unfined, filtered, 3 bottlings June-September, 30,000 b

2010

(vat, to be bottled in 2-3 months) good deep red robe. Perfumed, elegant nose that is pretty right away, has “éclat” or sparkle about it, shows blackberry – very clear Grenache here. The palate fruit is forward; there is real dash about this. It offers a mild sweetness, there are soft waves through it. w.o.w. wine. The length is correct, and there is a pocket of late, quite crisp tannin. A get on and go wine. To 2015. March 2011

2008

healthy dark red robe, black within. Spiced top air, blackberry jelly undernote, with a light flinty, free breeze side to it. There is a bite of black fruit, assertive pepper and licorice on the palate, with tannins dropped into the late stages. Has free rolling fruit, is a nice drop of wine. The length is good, and the sign-off is marked by sleek tannins. Live wine that is busy and spiced – capsicum, green pepper from the vintage – and it is probably best to drink while it is like this – fired up and rather pesky. The spice softens after 30 minutes open. Very good with spaghetti bolognaise. 14.5°. To 2017. March 2011

2007 ()

very pretty aroma – it combines floral and cherry airs, has wee licorice and is open and free. There is also a pretty strike of fruit on the palate, delivered with a silken cohesion. It runs truly to its fresh end. It has very bonny persistence, and there is a tingle of late tannin. Very drinkable: if you keep it for 9 months, there will be a little less tannin on the finish. STGT style. 2013-14 June 2008

2006

purple, mauve traces. The bouquet has a grilled outer air, but the fruit below is clear, live and handsome – ripe black cherries. This has substance, and shows well, is still young. The palate black fruit has an earthy, gummy nature from a little reduction still in the wine – means the effect is enclosed, wrapped up. There are bright, live tannins on the finish. A slow evolution wine that is well above the usual standard of Côtes du Rhône red. It can develop and soften away from its current rather strict nature. From late 2009. Once decanted, it showed Morello cherry on the nose and greater flow down the palate. 2014-16 April 2009 Previously Nov 2007 *** fresh and primary aroma, with a lot of life in it – is broad and elegant. There is good style in the palate fruit, good persistence, too: hits a real beauty spot late on, a sweet moment. 2013-15 Nov 2007

2005

bonny, clear cherry stone fruit aroma. The palate holds classy, refined fruit, and is enclosed now – no surprise, given that it has just been bottled, and this is now in London. Very assured red fruits – a stylish wine. Esp late 2007 on. 2014-15 Nov 2006, London

2004 ()

sound, quite dark red robe; has a floral, herbal garrigue nose with some red fruit – but it is reticent, and one has to search for now. There is interesting red fruit with little meaty side to it on the palate. This persists well, and is nicely wide. Still getting itself together. A wine of some character. From mid-2007. 2011-12 Nov 2006, London

2003

grilled air, stewed black fruits and a peppery overlay on the nose. Unusually jam-like, warm palate that gains interest towards the finish thanks to a little tannin. It grips on the finish, so is not too plush. A bit of the vintage burn on the aftertaste. More a sit-down wine than aperitif – this holds 10% Mourvèdre for the first time. To 2010. March 2005

2001

pretty, cooked fruit aroma. The palate has retained its clarity, with a good run of raspberry, spice and licorice, set in a rounded context. This has great character, is out of the ordinary. It is long, and ends with smoky black fruits. “It resembles 2005, but is a bit less concentrated,” Eric Michel. 2011-12 March 2007