If we look at the half empty glass - or tank -, frustration, and even sadness, will overwhelm us : historically small yields in France. The lowest of the post-war years. Cellars are empty. Clearly, one has to state that climate hazards, methodically, worked against us this year, in a succession of definitely adverse events : an abnormally cool spring caused frost, then grape shatter, on all of Rhone cépages, and, more particularly, Grenache. This cruel Spring followed up on a dauntingly dry summer… In the end, the yields in juice are tragically affected. The Wine grower’s job becomes tightrope walker’s job… without a net. These realities being called to mind, if we now look at the half full glass - and it is our nature to be optimistic -, the words which will come to me are relief, and even… enthusiasm ! These very challenging conditions indeed gave birth to first juices of so brilliant a Quality as they do better than just console us : they succeed in enticing, the Vignerons and us… !
The vines had naturally little load : they reacted magnificently to the extreme conditions of the year. The plant was able to bring its fruit to maturity, without big constraint, in an optimal way. The Wines promise to be splendidly well-balanced !
Year climatically unbalanced, but Cuvées showing balance… the Bourgogne way ! This, by the grace of Old Grenache, which brought to the highest level the singular personality of the real Rhone Wine. Wines are scented, refined...
Plateau de Sarrians, la Ponche, les Grès, les PendantsMaturing
10 months in one and two vintages barrels. Allier et Tronçais. Then 12 months in foudre.Vinification
1/2 non destemmed.
Decant 2 hours before service.
Captivating, perfumed, nose, on notes of dried ﬂowers and oriental spices. A Wine you will appreciate as of its early years.
14,5%Mise en bouteille
Without fining and filtration.Cépages
Grenache : 70 % Mourvèdre : 15 % Syrah : 15 %
Quite a deep crimson. Nose much less frank than the 2017 Rasteau’s. Rich, red-fruit compote and then very readable on the palate – almost ‘cool’! Then it all comes to a skidding halt and suddenly stops delivering fruit on the very drying finish. Difficult to read at the moment but very different from the rest of the southern Rhône 2017s from this producer
Jancis Robinson , 16/20 , 2018-10-22
I was blown away by the 2017 Vacqueyras Vieilles Vignes. This utterly beguiling 2017 offers a Burgundian, seamless, multi-dimensional style as well as smoking good notes of blackberries, blueberries, black cherries, and lavender. It has the depth of fruit and texture to drink well right out of the gate, but it’s going to evolve gracefully for a decade or more as well.
Jeb Dunnuck , 93-95/100 , 2018-08-28