Maison Tardieu-Laurent Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc Guy Louis

Assemblage from over one third of “downgraded” Crozes-Hermitage : this “moderates” opportunely the “Southern” mouths. The lovable North-South balance !


The vintage
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...
Southern and northern terroirs blended.
Ageing 8 months in new barrels, barrels from one and two vintages. Allier and Tronçais.
Roussanne : 35%
Clairette : 25%
Grenache : 20%
Marsanne : 10%
Viognier : 10%
Technical specifications
Age of vines: Grenache : 70 years, Marsanne/Roussanne : 60 years, Clairette : 30 years, Viognier : 40 years ans
Alcohol content: 13,5% % vol.
Mise en bouteille: Without fining and light filtration.

Tasting advices

Do not decant.

Reviews and Awards

"Enticing, with lemon gelée, yellow apple and verbena notes framed by a light hint of brioche. Sports a fresh, floral feel through the finish. Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Marsanne and Viognier."
"Interesting that this is made up of one-third fruit from the northern Rhône. Much edgier (and more like St-Péray) than the Les Becs Fins white. Pure and fresh and limpid somehow. Lots of lime fruit and freshness. Serious white – not quite as tense as Chapoutier’s Les Granits white St-Joseph but goes a little way towards it. Smokiness and some chew. Definite sweetness but there is sufficient acidity too"
"Based on roussanne with 25 percent clairette and smaller portions of grenache blanc, marsanne and viognier, this is a big, rich white. The tropical fruit tones and sweet oak calm down with air, the fruit turning toward golden apple and the wood turning to spice. Give this another five or six years in the cellar, then open it for pork shoulder roasted with fruit."

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