****(*) John Livingstone-Learmonth
"100% Syrah from Côte Brune (1930s/1991), schist soils, 80-100% destemmed (20% whole bunches since 2019), 4 day cool maceration, steel vat 3-week vinification, pumping overs, manual cap punchings, temp 25-30°C, aged new 228-litre oak casks 18 months, unfined, unfiltered, 2,600-3,500 b.
Dark red; the air is upright, deep, not demanding – blackberry with a pretty oiliness, and oak. The palate has a tasty, flavour-filled start, a really food fruit expression, a bit of sweetness. It has the Côte Blonde tenderness, is STGT. The finale is succulent; this is really tasty. Can be complex around 2018-19. From 2015."
Vinous Reverie Notes
For Christophe Pichon, winemaking is a family affair. After working with his father for years, he took over the family domaine in 1991, and started created his own high-quality Rhone wines with his wife Isabelle. Now with the eldest two of their six children working in the fields alongside them, they truly run a ‘family’ domaine - in every sense of the word. After taking over from his father, Christophe Pichon grew his domaine to its current 15 hectares, including vineyards in the Saint-Joseph, Condrieu and Côte-Rotie appellations. Pichon prides himself in making wines filled with “finesse, elegance, and a touch of minerality”. In the vineyards, he keeps chemical treatments to a strict minimum, and pays particular attention to the care of his soils, to ensure optimal minerality in the grapes. Throughout the growing season, the vines are carefully monitored, and pruning or green harvesting applied when necessary. Pichon’s Cote-Roties come from old Syrah vines (40-70 years old) growing on schist hillsides. He ages them for 14-18 months in 75-100% new oak, to achieve full-bodied yet smooth wines with great longevity. La Comtesse en Cote Blonde is the top Cote-Rotie of the domaine. Grown in the Cote Blonde, whose paler, more crumbly soils yield more delicate and earlier-drinking wines than its neighbor, the Cote Brune, this Syrah was raised 18 months in new oak. Dazzling.