Lastly, and a legendary wine in the making, the 2015 Hermitage La Chapelle is reminiscent of the 1990 with its full-bodied, opulently, sexy, yet concentrated style. Offering sensational notes of blackcurrants, smoked herbs, beef blood, and chocolate, it’s a huge yet elegant wine that has masses of sweet tannin, incredible purity and finesse, and a killer finish. It’s the finest wine from this estate in close to 30 years. Hats off to Caroline Fray and Jacques Desvernois!
The 2015 Hermitage La Chapelle is one of the estate’s finest recent efforts. It’s packed with firm tannins and will need to be lost in the cellar for a decade, but it will reward those with patience. Richly concentrated and full-bodied, it hits all the expected notes—cassis, black olive, smoke, crushed stone, pencil shavings and espresso—then finishes long, with an aristocratic sense of reserve and austerity. Winemaker Jacques Devernois compares it to a woman’s black dress, meaning it speaks of elegance and class. (JC)
Bright purple. Explosive, smoke- and spice-accented blueberry, cherry cola, incense and smoky mineral aromas show outstanding delineation and pick up a hint of olive with aeration. Sweet and expansive on the palate, offering deeply concentrated dark berry liqueur, fruitcake and floral pastille flavors, along with a suggestion of star anise. The remarkably long, penetrating finish features strong minerally cut, an echo of sweet blue fruit and harmonious tannins that come in late and fold effortlessly into the deeply concentrated fruit. At this stage, this is a contender for the wine of the vintage, at least by estimation. (JR)
A majestic and brooding nose with dark stone fruits, wet black stones, pepper and brown spices as well as some dark chocolate and meaty notes, and fresh truffle-like earthiness, too. The palate draws deep and even with effortless power. Seamless. Extremely focused and long fine tannins. Hints of high cocoa chocolate. The acidity is stunning. This is flawless Hermitage. Drink 2023 and beyond.
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2016 Raymond Usseglio "Cuvée Impériale - Vignes Centenaires" Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Pre-Arrival)