Bottled at the end of June and brought up in new barrels, the blockbuster 2017 Condrieu La Doriane is up there with the crème de la crème, and just might be the wine of the vintage in the region. Stunning notes of buttered peach, crème brûlée, white flowers, and honeysuckle all literally soar from the glass. Deep, rich, medium to full-bodied and powerful, like the base cuvée, it stays incredibly pure and elegant. Drink bottles over the coming 4-5 years. Don’t miss it. The big news at the Guigal estate is the purchase of Domaine de Nalys in Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The family has always wanted an estate in the South, and Nalys is an unrealized treasure trove of awesome terroir and old vines, both of which I’ve no doubt will be maximized by this talented family. In addition, the former winemaker at Paul Jaboulet Aîné, Jacques Desvernois, has joined the team, and while it’s not clear exactly what his role will be, I suspect he will largely lead the charge at Domaine de Nalys. Either way, Desvernois is an incredible talent and can only add to what is already a well-oiled machine. As to the wines reviewed in this report, I was able to taste multiple vintages of each of the cuvées and have listed the wines by cuvée as opposed to by vintage, which is how we tasted through the wines.
The concentration of fruit in this wine is always staggering. Such impressive depth and power. Deeply ripe, rich, apricot and peach aromas with a citrus, grapefruit edge and plenty of hazelnut oak. The palate is densely flavored, super-long and packed with ripe mangoes, apricots and peaches. Immaculate. Drink or hold.
Slightly more forward and flamboyant than the more classically structured 2016, the 2017 Condrieu la Doriane is full-bodied, plush and opulent, loaded with flowers, melons and apricots. Yes, the oak is noticeable, but it adds a relatively restrained note of toasted almonds, serving to focus and lift the waves of succulent fruit. I'd drink this silky-textured beauty over the next few years, while it's still as showy as can be. (JC)
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