Wines as prizes – 2019 edition

This column presents all the donations made for the 2018 edition by “chateaux” and domains which were offered to the participating teams according to their ranking at the blind tasting test.

1st PRICE : Château Lafitte-Rothschild, Pauillac, 2014lafite.png

Grape Varieties: 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc
Ageing in oak barrels: 18 to 20 months in 100% new barrels.

2014 Vintage: 
Significant rainfall from November to February restored groundwater reserves, which had already been substantially replenished by average or higher than average rain in 2012 and 2013.
Temperatures remained above normal and the vines missed the hearty winter frosts; what they really wanted were about two weeks of crisp mornings with beautiful sunshine, dry cold and no wind. But you cannot control nature! Bud break was early, followed by uniform flowering during the first week of June, spurred on by a rise in temperatures.
As always, the impact of the weather on the vineyard was their primary concern, and their teams worked throughout the year to ensure that the grapes reach maturity in perfect health. The onset of ripening occurred over two periods, first in late July and then again after 15 August, creating differences in the ripeness of the bunches on the same vine.
Some “juggling” was therefore necessary when it came to the harvests, in order to make the best choices; the pickers and sorters were under strict orders to only keep the very best quality red grapes, suited to the production their Pauillac grand vins.

Tasting notes: Beautiful, intense red garnet colour. The nose is complex and fruity, characteristic of 2014, with beautiful floral notes. There is a light toasted note, but the wood is already well integrated. In the mouth, the wine is massive, displaying power and elegance at the same time. Blackberries and blackcurrants again declare a strong presence, and are complemented by the notes of violet and cedar so often found in Lafite’s wines. The palate is fresh, harmonious and very long. There is a pleasant balance between richness and finesse. To enjoy this wine at its peak, one will have to manage to wait about ten years.

Tasting advice: Decanting 2 hours or more. Tasting temperature: 16 -18°C
Average annual production: 16,000 cases.

Château d’Aussières, Corbières, 2014aussières.png

Château d’Aussières is the “cuvée d’excellence”, the product of a strict selection from the best plots in the vineyard, made in limited quantities. 40% is aged in oak barrels for 12 to 16 months. The wines express all the richness and elegance of the late-ripening, cool terroir.

Grape varieties: 56% Syrah (Shiraz), 17% Grenache, 11%Mourvèdre and 16%Carignan
Length of ageing in oak barrels: 12 to 16 months, 40% in oak barrels
Average annual production: 10,000 cases
Tasting advice: Decanting about 1 hour. Tasting temperature: 16 -18°C

Vintage 2014:
The Languedoc underwent marked disparities in terms of climate, particularly regarding rainfall, which impacted each production zone differently. The northern and southernmost parts of the region tended to receive an excess of rain, while the central area suffered from a shortage.
Even within Aussières’ vineyard, this year’s weather resulted in unevenness between the various terroirs and grape varieties.
Despite very different conditions from the previous vintage, 2014 presents some similarities in terms of the balance of the wines, with a good level of extraction, lovely aromatic finesse and plenty of freshness.

Tasting notes: Dark red colour with purplish glints. Deep, elegant nose with notes of eucalyptus and pine sap. Superb attack on the palate, with cherry flavours and a hint of cocoa. Lingering, well-balanced, elegant finish. This vintage can be appreciated both very young and after a few years in the bottle.
Best time to drink: 2016-2020

Maison M. Chapoutier, Crozes-Hermitage, « Les Meysonniers », 2017chapoutier.png

Grape variety: Syrah
The Crozes-Hermitage “Les Meysonniers” red comes from vines that are at least 25 years old.
Soil: Hillsides with a slight slope facing south. The soil consists of a mixture of clays, pebbles and gravel.

Harvest: Manual harvest at maturity.
Vinification: Their Crozes-Hermitage is vinified in a traditional way with pumping over and punching in concrete vats.
Aging: Aged for about 12 months in concrete vats.

Volume of alcohol: 13%

Color: very intense purple red.
Nose: red fruits, blackcurrant and raspberry, then violet.
Palate: full and round, cooked fruit and vanilla finish.

Château Clarke, Listrac-Medoc, 2015clarke

Grapes variety: 70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon

Plantation density: 6,600 vines/hectare (1m x 1.5m)

Vineyard age: 30 years

Ageing period: 14 to 18 months

Vineyard area: 55 hectares

Soil type: Clay-limestone


Clos du Marquis, Saint-Julien, 2014clos du m.png

Blend: Cabernet Sauvignon 74% Merlot 22% Cabernet Franc 4%
Harvest period: From 30th September to 13th October 2014
Lab analyzes: Degré: 13,85 %vol. – Acidité Totale: 3,97 gH2SO4/l – pH: 3,63 – IPT: 68 Alcohol degree: 13.85 %vol. – Total Acidity: 3.97 gH2SO4/l – pH: 3.63 – IPT: 68

Vintage 2014: After a relatively early budburst that followed the wet and mild winter, the coolness of May delayed the flowering and brought the dates of 2014 back around the averages of the past ten years. June and July were punctuated by stormy spells but the latter half of July was sunnier and hotter for the cluster closing and the colour change, improving the potential of development for phenolic compounds in the grapes. The fine weather then settled in from 15th August with mild temperatures that maintained good acidity levels. Then the month of September was among the hottest and sunniest of the decade, beneficial to the positive hydric stress that would bring smoothness to the tannins developing in the skins and pips. The careful mastery of the yield, vigour and early de-leafing all ensured the grapes remained perfectly healthy, making it possible to pick each grape variety at optimum ripeness.

Tasting note: Pure and vibrant, with a lovely stream of plum, cassis and blackberry confiture notes, laced with licorice snap and violet hints. A sleek graphite detail harnesses the finish. Wins on purity in the end. Best from 2019 through 2028. 


Chateau Duhart-Milon, Pauillac, 2011duhart millon.png

Grape varieties: 65 to 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20 to 35% Merlot.
Ageing in oak barrels: 14 months (50% new barrels). 

2011 Vintage:
The weather conditions were somewhat unusual this year and required all of their technical teams’ vigilance and expertise.
Spring and summer changed places: spring was exceptionally hot and dry, resulting in an acceleration of the growth cycle, and then the summer saw less sunshine than usual in July, and a wetter than average August. Finally, just as they were getting ready to harvest, a huge hail storm in the north of Pauillac and Saint Estèphe on 1 September and obliged us to reorganize the schedules. The plots that had been affected had to be picked first; fortunately, as a result of the conditions, the grapes had ripened early, and quality was not compromised.

Tasting note:
Intense colour with hints of purple.
Initially characterized by woodiness, the nose then presents a beautiful expression of red fruit, tobacco and spicy notes. Elegant and fresh on the palate. Fine structure, density and length with a complex fruity finish.

Tasting advice: Decanting 2 hours or more. Tasting temperature: 16 -18 °C
Average annual production: 20,000 to 25,000 cases.

Champagne Gosset, Champagne, « Brut Grande Réserve »gosset.png

Architecture: Chardonnay 45%, Pinot noir 45%, Pinot Meunier 10%
Cellaring: 2014 – a minimum of 3 years in the cellar
Disgorgement: minimum 6 months
Villages: Aÿ, Bouzy, Ambonnay, Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Villers-Marmery
Dosage: 8 g/l
Serving Temperature: 8°C-10°C

Cellar master Odilon de Varine comments:
“This is the signature cuvée of the House and is the perfect expression of the Champagne Gosset style, which has been used for over 30 years.”
Its structure of absolute subtlety and distinction is the perfect expression of the Champagne Gosset style. Vinified and aged on lees to eliminate all risk of premature oxidation. Malolactic fermentation is carefully avoided in order to preserve all the natural fruit aromas of the wine and to allow the wines to undergo longer ageing. Brut dosage (8 g/l) to maintain the balance between freshness, fruit and the body of the wine. Aged for a minimum of 3 years in the cellar at a constant temperature, well beyond the legal minimum of 15 months.

Appearance: Luminous and golden.
Freshness and fruit aromas. The Chardonnay offers a delicacy underscored by aromas of yellow fruit such as peach and Mirabel plum.
Palate: On the palate the Pinot Noir from Aÿ has a magnificent structure. Hawthorn and white blossom intertwine harmoniously, with a finely-honed acidity carried by notes of citrus.

Pairing: This champagne that is both delicate and tense, suave and assertive, is naturally versatile. A dual personality that complements elaborate cuisine with simplicity and grace. Savour with tapas, farm-reared chicken, oysters, langoustines, comté, parmesan…

Domaine Guigal, Côte-Rôtie, « Château d’Ampuis », 2014ampuis.png

Soil geology: Includes 7 exceptional terroirs: Le Clos “Côte Blonde”, La Garde “Côte Blonde”, La Grande Plantée “Côte Blonde”, La Pommière “Côte Brune”, Le Pavillon Rouge “Côte Brune”. The “Côte Brune” Mill La Viria “Côte Brune”
Grape varieties: 93% Syrah, 7% Viognier
Vines already planted in the 16th century
Vinification: Closed stainless steel tanks. Controlled alcoholic fermentation temperatures. Vatting time of 4 weeks.
Maturing: Single 38-month ageing in new oak barrels.
Yield: 39 hL/hectare
Production: About 30,000 bottles.

Tasting session:
Visual: Dark and deep colour, purple reflections.
Olfactory: Spices, black fruits and delicate aromas of wood. The nose is dense, expressive and intense.
Taste: Tannic and distinguished wine. Aromas of prunes, blackberries and vanilla. Powerful, concentrated and structured on the palate.
All together: Wine from a muscular and tannic vintage, forged by a warm climate. The tannins are very solid but softened by a prolonged maturation in wood.

Famille Hugel, Alsace, Pinot gris « Vendange Tardive », 2000hugel VT.png

Quick view: These wines made from overripe grapes are picked well after the classic vintage and in the greatest years only. The action of noble rot (botrytis cinerea) gives them an almost unlimited ability to age. They are part of the elite of the greatest wines in France.

The vintage:
Every wine producer in the world must have dreamed of a having a memorable vintage to bear the magic number 2000. In Alsace they were not disappointed, as 2000 was one of the best vintages of recent years, of normal size and with very good overall ripeness levels for all grape varieties.
Light rain in mid-October prevented us from making a truly outstanding vintage, but thanks to reasonable yields and excellent ripeness they have achieved great consistency across the range. In their own estate, the results are above their expectations, with small quantities of SGN wines that will long be remembered. Acidity levels are excellent and should give well balanced wines with good structure.

In the vineyard: Produced in a selection of the finest plots of the Hugel estate in lower and heavier parts of the grand cru Sporen, rich in clay and in their best plots in the chalky Pflostig.
Harvest date: 25 Oct. 2000 Potential alcohol: 17,0°

Winemaking: The grapes are taken in small tubs to the presses, which are filled by gravity, without any pumping or other mechanical intervention. After pressing, the must is decanted for a few hours, then fermented in temperature controlled barrels or vats (at 18 to 24°C). The wine is racked just once, before natural clarification during the course of the winter. The following spring, the wine is lightly filtered just before bottling, and the bottles are then aged extensively in their cellars until released for sale.

Grape variety: Pinot gris 100%
Alcohol level: 12.5%.

Maison Louis Latour, Pernand-Vergelesse 1er Cru, « En Caradeux », 2017latour.png

The Vine Average vine age  25 years Soil Clay and limestone Average yield 40 hl/ha Harvest Hand picked

Vinification & Ageing Fermentation: Traditional in oak barrels with complete malolactic fermentation Ageing 8 to 10 months ageing in oak barrels, 25% new Barrels Louis Latour cooperage, french oak, medium toasted

Description: The village of Pernand-Vergelesses is located just 3km from that of Aloxe-Corton and of all the villages that the Grand Cru hill of Corton looks over, this is the most picturesque. The parcel “En Caradeux”, located mid-slope and exposed to the East, faces the hill of Corton. These vines are worked traditionally by the winemakers of Domaine Louis Latour. The soil is stony and the basement is composed of marl and flint limestone which gives the typical particularity of this terroir.

Wine tasting: Pale yellow color, their Pernand-Vergelesses 1er Cru “En Caradeux” 2017 offers a nose with almond paste, menthol and flinty notes. Its mouth is ample and fresh with pear hints and a peppery final.
Cellaring Potential 5-7 years
Food Pairing Shellfish – fish
Serving temperature  12-14° 

Jancis Robinson – January 2019 – 15.5+/20 

Domaine Pardon & Fils, Fleurie, 2015fleurie.png

Origin/Naming: Beaujolais region
Vine: 100% Gamay with white juice
Pruning: very short (gobelet)
Density: 10 000 feet / ha
Age of the vineyard: more than 55 years
Production: 55 hL/ha

Terroir characteristics: This Fleurie “domaine Pardon”, in total 7 ha, is situated on the heights of Fleurie. The soil consists in a very homogenous way of granitic sand and granite with big crystals. This soil produces elegant, fine and very fruity wines with floral notes.

Vinification and maturation: The winemaking takes place in their cellar in Fleurie. Harvested manually at the end of September, the whole clusters are cross-posted in tanks in cement and stainless steel. The maceration lasts 8 to 10 days according to the sanitary state of the harvest. The progress of the fermentation is controlled regularly, and the temperature of the must is regulated. Pressing lasts approximately 2 hours. Once the fermentation is finished, the malolactic fermentation takes place. The wine then reached its final composition. We let the wine gain in maturity in tanks for 8 months before bottling, in spring.

Tasting Notes:
Visual: intense red
Nose: notes of small red berries (blackcurrant), ripe fruit
Palate: well-structured with melted tannins
Type: dry red wine, less than 2g of residual sugar/L
Enjoy at 14/15°C with chicken, poulty, veal, pork, lamb.
Already delicious, this wine can age 4 to 5 years 

Château de Meursault, Meursault 1er Cru, « Charmes Dessus », 2016meursault.png

As a real jewel of the Château, this Premier Cru is elaborated from the best plots of the Charmes-Dessus terroir. 

Operated vineyard surface: 3.02 hectares
Grape variety: Chardonnay
Soil: harsh Jurassic limestone and marly limestone
Exposure: East
Location: on the mid-slope

Vinification and ageing: Our cellar-master carries out a close follow-up of every barrel in order to obtain richness, complexity and balance according to the characteristics of each vintage.
Harvest: manual harvest followed by a sorting of the grapes Vinification: after a static clarification, the grape musts are put into oak barrels to start their alcoholic fermentation.
Ageing: on fine lees in new oak barrels (35%) and in oak barrels of one or two years
Time of ageing: 15 to 19 months  

Tasting Note: The nose is rich, powerful and complex with toasted notes and yellow fruit aromas. The mouth is rich combining tension and finesse with a great fresh and mineral final.
Service Temperature between 12° and 14°C Food and wine pairings
Cellaring potential from now to 15 years 

Château Rieussec, Sauternes, 2006rieussec.png

Grapes varieties: 94% Sémillon, 3% Sauvignon, 3% Muscadelle
Ageing in oak barrels: 18 to 26 months depending on the year, 50 to 55% in new barrels.

2006 Vintage: The autumn/winter period of 2005-2006 was exceptionally dry, which was then compensated for by heavy rain during March. There was fine weather and warm temperatures from April to July; August was cooler but the sun returned at the beginning of September to complete the ripening process.

Tasting notes: Beautiful pale golden colour with hints of orange. A fairly dense nose with a delightful combination of flowers (honeysuckle and acacia) and candied fruit. Starts subtly in the mouth and then intensifies with notes of honey and a long fruity finish with good freshness.
Tasting advice: Decanting just before serving, Tasting temperature: 8 -10°C

Average annual production: Varies a great deal depending on the vintage, but on average is about 6,000 cases (however, none was made in 1977, 1993 and 2012).

Domaine André et Mireille Tissot, Arbois, Savagnin – wine aged under oxidative veil, 2015tissot.png

Terroir: This wine comes from the clay soils of Trias of the localities of “In Spois” and “La Vasée “
Exposure: East and North West
Area for this wine: 2.30 ha
Age of vines: Date of plantations of vines harvested: 1968 – 1974 – 1996 – 1997 – 2000
Planting density: 7000 plants / ha
Production: 8,500 bottles

Cultural mode: Biodynamically driven vineyard, Ecocert certification and Demeter control. The vines are grown without weed killers, chemical fertilizers or synthetic products. We use to treat the vine sulfur, copper and herbal teas. Production and supply of our compost. These vines are plowed in full.

Harvesting, vinification and aging: Hand-made, de-stemming, pneumatic pressing, light settling, spontaneous fermentation in vats, aging in casks of 228 liters on lees for 32 months under the yeast veil. Bottling with a light filtration. For all their oxidative wines they use a little sulfur (1 to 3g/hL) before fermentation. After oxidative aging sulfur is not necessary because it is inefficient (combination of SO2 with aldehydes).

Tasting: Powerful wine marked by nuts, spices, celery. Concentrated and long mouth always marked by the nut. Very nice freshness.
Food Pairing: Appetizers, oysters, curry, saffron, mushrooms, white meats, county
Time to keep: Wine already ready to drink. 30 years aging potential.

Domaine De La Taille Aux Loups, Montlouis-sur-Loire, « Triple Zéro », 2016taille aux loups.png

Grape variety: 100% Chenin
Age of vines: over 50 years old.
Soil: clay limestone and siliceous clay, on limestone bedrock.
Vine growing: plowed vines, short pruning 6 to 8 eyes, 4 spurs maximum per foot. Non certified organic culture.

Harvest: Manual, grapes sorted on table. Potential wealth:120-125. Transport of the harvest in boxes. Yield between 30 and 40 hectoliters per hectare.

– Zero chaptalisation: pneumatic pressing without rebeach, gravity descent of the juices. Very slow fermentation without yeasting or chaptalization in old barrels (5 to 10 years).
– Zero tirage liqueur: transfer of the juices in bottles when it remains 10 to 12 g of sugar to ferment, (indigenous yeasts exclusively). Stay on slats: 18 to 24 months.
– Zero expedition liqueur: when disgorging, the ripeness of the grapes helps prevent the addition of expedition liqueur. The level of the bottle is made with the same wine.

Service: This sparkling wine is first of all a wine, aeration will be necessary and beneficial. Service temperature: 10 to 120.
Food & wine pairing: It can be tasted at all times, perfect as an aperitif, where the total absence of liquor leaves the mouth of a great freshness, it can accompany a meal, a long evening or quench a summer afternoon.

Domaine de Terres Blanches, Sancerre, « La Louisonne », 2014terres blanches.png

The embodiment of Saget La Perrière’s resolve to produce great wines, Domaine de Terres Blanches also symbolizes the commitment to quality which has been ingrained within the Saget family for  generations.  Like a diamond in the rough, it took the skilled work of men and in particular that of consultant, Stéphane Derenoncourt, and his team, to cut through to the quintessence of the Domaine’s magnificent terroirs.   Convinced of  Domaine de Terres Blanches’ potential, the man behind the project, Stéphane, and his team, have succeeded in drawing out the mineral expression of the Domaine’s white wines and the delicate character of its reds, thanks to exacting work in the vineyard and on its soil. With three appellations from Central Loire, the property gives us a true recital of the Sauvignon Blanc varietal, brought out beautifully in the appellations of Sancerre, Pouilly Fumé and Coteaux du Giennois.

Grape Variety: Pinot Noir 100%
Soil: This wine comes from a vineyard plot known as “La Louisonne” with caillotes soil. Located in the district of Bué en Sancerre, it only covers 44 acres. The vines are 40 years old on average.

Production technical data: Harvesting is carried out entirely by hand with a careful sorting of the grapes, a proportion of which will be de-stemmed in the winery. Fermentation takes place in open stainless steel vats for 3 weeks. Punching down operations are performed at the start of the maceration, with pumping over carried out throughout the alcoholic fermentation process. The wine is aged in new oak barrels and barrels previously used for 1 vintage, for a minimum of 10 months.

Tasting notes: This wine offers up ripe red fruit and black cherry aromas, against a backdrop of smooth oak. Big and rich on entry to the palate. The wine is well-balanced, with refined substance and a lovely long finish.

Food-wine pairings: With its smoothness and body, this wine will go perfectly with beef and small feathered game, such as pheasant with Chanterelle mushrooms.
Serve at a temperature of 12/14°C.

Domaine Trimbach, Alsace, « Frederic Emile », 2011trimbach.png

Vintage: The 2011 growing season was warm and sunny. The grapes were picked in the Geisberg and Osterberg Grands Crus at very good quality level, higher then 13,0 % natural potential alcohol. Thank’s to the beautiful and constant air draft coming from the deep valley just behind Ribeauvillé , the grapes were picked ripe and in very healthy conditions. This Riesling is a text-book dry “Frédéric Emile”, classic from their best terroirs from Ribeauvillé, a wine to keep for years.

Winemaking: The vinification was obviously still very traditional very much into Pierre Trimbach’s style therefore dry and the wine is now a perfect wine for the pleasures of the gastronomy. The Trimbach Family picks the Riesling grapes by hand as late as possible in order to achieve maximum ripeness which, in turn, gives optimum depth of flavor and complexity. The juice runs into the cellar by gravity from a pneumatic press and clarifies naturally prior to fermentation. The juice ferments in stainless steel at controlled temperature for 3-4 weeks. The wine is vinified to complete dryness – no residual sugar.

Maturation: The wine is not oak-aged as the Trimbach’s believe that wood gives nothing to their wines, the salient characteristics of which are extreme purity and concentrated fruit. Bottling is early to preserve freshness and wines then bottle-aged before leaving the winery. « CFE » Riesling needs 3 to 5 years to blossom and usually ages a minimum of 15+ years.

Tasting Note: Very attractive already, quite powerful nose. Full bodied wine with intensity,depth and beautiful mineral flavor.
Delicious with fish, poultry and veal. Sea scalops, turbot, salmon, Dover sole and wallye-pike are great companions. Great with lobster as well. Grilled fishes, or marinated fishes or fishes cooked in white wine sauces. Ideal wine to match with fusion cuisines. Traditionally served in Alsace with goose and pork.

Château d’Yquem, Sauternes, « Y », 2016Y.png

With an annual production of 10,000 bottles a year, Y (pronounced “ee-grek” in French) is a rare wine. It is made from the same outstanding terroir and the same vines as Château d’Yquem. Although work in the vineyard is every bit as meticulous, the grapes are picked and the wine made in a different way. 

Y was formerly made at the end of the harvest, with the last bunches left on the vines. These grapes, affected to varying degrees by Botrytis cinerea, but never with more than 15% potential alcohol, resulted in a very unusual wine. This explains why it has always been produced in small quantities and on an irregular basis since 1959. Y changed starting in 1996, but without compromising its unique character, to be more in tune with the times by displaying the qualities of freshness and crispness – essential for a modern great white wine. It was decided in 2004 to make Y every year. It is thus by deliberate choice that they now harvest certain plots of Sauvignon Blanc at the beginning of the vintage, making sure to pick perfectly ripe bunches. These are completed by Sémillon grapes picked just at that fleeting stage when the grapes have reached maximum ripeness, botrytis has just appeared, and the skins have turned a pinkish colour. This is the precise moment when this grape variety’s tannins are soft enough for the aromatic potential of the best plots of clay soil to come through.

The wine receives close attention all during fermentation: light, precise pressing as well as temperature-controlled must racking and alcoholic fermentation in a new aesthetically pleasing, state-of-the-art vat room set aside just for this wine. The end of fermentation and ageing on the lees take place in barrels. Only one third of these are new, and the lees are regularly stirred (bâtonnage) for ten months.

The final blend is made after tasting. It usually consists predominantly of Sauvignon Blanc and a few lots of Sémillon.

Domaine Zind-Humbrecht, Alsace Grand Cru, « Clos Saint Urbain », 2016zind.png

Bottling date: February 2018
Alcohol: 14.5°
Residual sugar: <2 g/l
Total Acidity: 3.5 gH2SO4/L , pH: 3.5
Yield: 20 hl/ha
Optimum drinking period: 2021-2040+
Average age of the vines: 53 years
Terroir: Sedimentary volcanic rocks. South facing, steep slope
Sweetness index: 1

Description: The Grand Cru Rangen is located at the opening of a deep valley, close to high summits and is under the influence of cold valley winds. The mountain climate is enhanced by the altitude of the vineyard, so it is no surprise that the Rangen is a very late ripening vineyard. The steep slope and dark volcanic sediment (Grauwacke) eventually compensate the late climate and allow the grape to ripen perfectly. In 2016, the flowering happened during a very rainy week and was therefore delayed with strong losses due to coulure. 2016 is a large crop in Alsace, but not for this grape in the Rangen! The grapes ripened perfectly through a very dry summer, remained very healthy and the wine was eventually ale to ferment really fast (a few weeks!) and finished bone dry. Despite the speed of the fermentation, it was bottled later than usual, which allowed the wine to develop a very strong character.

Tasting Notes: Intense yellow, light gold colour. Smelling this wine is equivalent to smell a rifle after it just fired! There are very powerful and strong flinty and smoky aromatics, closer to gunpowder and burnt peat. Make no mistaken this isn’t reduction, but a typical expression of the brutal volcanic terroir, enhanced by the absence of overripe flavours. The palate confirms the nose, it is powerful, long, uncompromising and full but possesses a well-bred elegance. The high mineral content soil also brings a complex bitter and saline mouth structure. The finish goes on forever, like warm spices, but without any burning sensations. Already impressive, it will improve slowly for a very long time.