Walls’ dozen great buys


Do­maine Font de Michelle, Blanc 2016 91 £ 26.60 Cru World Wine, Davy’s Gre­nache Blanc, Clairette, Rous­sanne and Bour­boulenc, co-fer­mented, no mal­o­lac­tic. Lime blos­som in spring wa­ter, green pear and a back note of al­mond. Rounded and gen­er­ous but with juicy fruit, just enough acid­ity and a long, min­eral fin­ish. Drink 2017-2019 Al­co­hol 13.5%

Château de Beau­cas­tel, Hom­mage à Jacques Per­rin 2001 99 £ 258 Farr Vint­ners, Yar­nell Vint­ners Their best Mourvè­dres com­prise 60% of the blend. Iron, blood, stewed plums, roast­ing pan juices and spicy cedar. Mus­cu­lar tan­nic frame, won­der­fully fresh. Long and com­plex, with a fin­ish of bar­be­cued herbs and bal­samic. A tour de force. Drink 2017-2045 Alc 13.5%

Clos des Papes 2015 96 £62.60 A& B Vint­ners, Berry Bros & Rudd A su­perla­tively el­e­gant, mid­dleweight, Mourvè­drerich Châteauneuf that glides across the palate like silk, fea­tur­ing juicy plum and straw­berry fruits, lifted ju­niper and fen­nel seed fresh­ness. Very fine clay tan­nins. In­tense but not through ex­trac­tion; gen­er­ous, but with en­ergy and pre­ci­sion. Ef­fort­less.

Drink 2017-2038 Alc 15%

Clos du Mon­tOlivet, La Cu­vée du Papet 2015 95 £76 Fine & Rare 70% Gre­nache, 15% Syrah, 15% Mourvè­dre, some more than 100 years old. Vi­brant and ex­pres­sive rasp­berry and vi­o­let, a beau­ti­ful ex­pres­sion of Gre­nache. Full-bod­ied with fine tan­nins, pin­point acid­ity. Sub­tle and ex­pertly crafted. Drink 2018-2035 Alc 15%

Do­maine Charvin 2000 95 £54 Seck­ford Wines 85% Gre­nache, 5% Mourvè­dre, 5% Syrah, 5% Vac­carèse. Au­tumn leaves, last of the sea­son’s straw­ber­ries, rasp­berry liqueur, chest­nut and truf­fle. Har­mo­nious. Min­eral grain and cleans­ing acid­ity on the long fin­ish. From a re­li­able es­tate mak­ing clas­si­cally styled wines. Drink 2017-2022 Alc 14.5%

Do­maine du Ban­neret 2016 94 £45.99 (2013) The Win­ery Tank sam­ple: 60% Gre­nache, 10% Mourvè­dre, 10% Syrah, 20% all oth­ers co-planted. Fra­grant and flo­ral black cherry and raspberries with

fresh herbal hints. Tra­di­tional, medium-bod­ied, tex­tu­ral style with vi­brant acid­ity and fine tan­nins. Very promis­ing.

Drink 2018-2036 Alc 14.5%

Do­maine la Bar­roche, Pure 2015 94 £73.49-£79.99 (2014) AG Wines, Les Caves de Pyrene Pretty vi­o­let, wild straw­berry nose. Rounded, juicy and gen­er­ous, with ripe fruits shot through with am­ple acid­ity. Very fine wet-clay tan­nins and mouth-coat­ing fruit. An ex­cel­lent ex­pres­sion of pure Gre­nache with the tan­nic struc­ture some oth­ers lack. Drink 2017–2030 Alc 15%

Le Clos du Cail­lou, La

Réserve 2015 94 £ 100.40 Fine & Rare 55% Gre­nache, 45% Mourvè­dre. Se­duc­tive rose, clove and cedar spice. Full but not heavy. Very fine tan­nins and bright rasp­berry acid­ity. Like a still lake – smoke on the wa­ter. A pol­ished, pure and po­tent mod­ern ex­pres­sion. Drink 2017-2025 Alc 15%

Le Vieux Don­jon 2010 94 £42 Yapp Bros 75% Gre­nache, 10% Syrah, 10% Mourvè­dre, 5% Cin­sault; yields of just 26hl/ha. The fruit is de­vel­op­ing a de­li­ciously bal­samic undergrowth aroma. Medium-bod­ied but aro­mat­i­cally and struc­turally as­sertive: bright acid­ity, highly tex­tu­ral, with an en­joy­ably un­pol­ished style. Drink 2017-2022 Alc 14.5%

Château la Nerthe, Rouge 2016 93 £ 30.80 (2015) Berry Bros & Rudd Tank sam­ple. Deep, ripe core of fruit and tan­nin punc­tured by a tremu­lous acid line. Vi­brant, juicy black­berry and black cherry fruits, with a fra­grant vi­o­let end. Light on its feet and very drink­able. Drink 2019-2035 Alc 15%

Do­maine de la Vieille Juli­enne, Les Trois Sources

2014 92 £ 38.33 Mil­lésima 60% Gre­nache with oth­ers co-planted on sand. For a Châteauneuf, light- to medium-bod­ied with a fresh cherry/berry nose and sub­tle earth­i­ness. Bright and snappy, very dry with firm acid­ity and a saline fin­ish. Re­fresh­ing; highly drink­able. Drink 2017-2025 Alc 14.5%

Do­maine Chante- Ci­gale

2012 91 £ 20.95 Vin Neuf A large es­tate with a young owner, em­body­ing a con­tem­po­rary style – and ex­cel­lent value. Age is just start­ing to give some woodsy, au­tumn leaf characters to the lo­gan­berry fruit. Pure, pre­cise and medium-bod­ied. Drink 2017–2022 Alc 14.5%

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