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A white grape variety originating in the Northern Rhône and which in the last ten years has been increasingly planted in the Southern Rhône and the Languedoc.
It is a poor-yielding grape that is notoriously fickle to grow, being susceptible to a whole gamut of pests and diseases. Crucially it must be picked at optimum ripeness - if harvested too early and under-ripe the resulting wine can be thin, dilute and unbalanced, while if picked too late then the wine will lack the grape's distinctive peach and honeysuckle aroma. It is most successfully grown in the tiny appellations of Château-Grillet and Condrieu where it thrives on the distinctive arzelle granite-rich soils. It is also grown in Côte Rôtie where it lends aromatic richness to the wines when blended with Syrah.
Viognier has been on the charge in the Southern Rhône and the Languedoc throughout the 1990s and is now a key component of many white Côtes du Rhône. In Languedoc and Rousillon it is increasingly being bottled unblended and with notable success with richly fragrant wines redolent of overripe apricots and peaches and selling at a fraction of the price of their Northern Rhône cousins.
Wines sold "In Bond" (including BBX) or “En Primeur” are not available for immediate delivery and storage charges may apply.
Duty and VAT must be paid separately before delivery can take place.
Bottle 6 x 75cl26cs
Bottle 12 x 75cl43cs
Bottle 12 x 75cl4cs
Bottle 6 x 75cl2cs
If one believes the old adage about imitation and flattery, then Les Vins de Vienne should be justifiably proud of the numerous growers now making wine from the ancient vineyards of Seyssuel, just to the north of the old Roman town of Vienne. The role of the founders, Messrs Gaillard, Cuilleron and Villard is now one of benevolent consultancy and today it is winemaker Pascal Lombard who is guiding the style and building the reputation. In the manner of the Sorcerer’s Apprentice, the off-spring has now out-grown all three of its progenitors, but this does not seem to have had a detrimental effect on quality, particularly with the Domaine wines, the best of which are offered below.
Bottle 6 x 75cl42cs
Bottle 12 x 75cl1cs
Bottle 6 x 75cl8cs
Bottle 6 x 75cl1cs
Bottle 12 x 75cl2cs
Bottle 6 x 75cl3cs
Bottle 6 x 75cl14cs
The hand-over from Robert to Rémi is technically complete, but Robert shows no sign of retiring and it is always good to see him when we go to taste the wines. His temperament is such, however, that his presence can only be positive, as he surveys the resumption of good work which he started, taking advantage of very good plots in both Condrieu, where they own 6 hectares, and Côte Rôtie (3 hectares) and transforming the Domaine from a merely very good one to one of the key references.
Bottle 12 x 75cl5cs
Bottle 6 x 75cl5cs
Bottle 12 x 75cl9cs
Aptly named, the Vertige is sourced from Yves’ oldest, highest and best parcel of vines. The texture is that of a plush tapestry, adorned with both tropical and citric fruits and balanced by 18 months in oak. Behind the cashmere softness a shaft of mineral acidity lends focus and definition. Drink 2010-2014.
Our visit to Yves this year, despite its first-after-lunch graveyard slot, was one of the best of them all. Perhaps it was a fruit day! The wines were singing and Yves was composed and confident, clearly very happy with the vintage. For him the long ripening season of 2010, with its significant diurnal temperature variations, was the key to quality. The vigneron’s Grand Master chess skills were fully exercised in the decision of when to harvest… a tricky decision of course, each plot being different, but now, finally I understand the purpose of each of the many varied cuvées in the range and there appears to be some stability and a real sense of purpose in the winemaking….and not too much new oak now…..The enfant terrible has really come of age…