Impenetrably dense and dark, the 2015 Cote Rotie La Landonne is loaded with black olive, espresso and cassis fruit. It's full-bodied, rich and velvety in texture and nearly endless on the finish, yet it never seems overbearing or overripe, remaining vibrant and fun from start to finish. Right now, the tannins are prominent, giving the wine a dry, dusty sendoff, so give it a decade to mellow before opening a bottle. (JC)
The 2015 Côte Rôtie La Landonne is another wine that has perfection written all over it. Made in a more backward, concentrated, structured style, its inky purple color is followed by a mammoth bouquet of smoked black fruits, charcoal, camphor, and graphite, with more meaty notes developing with time in the glass. With a finish that won’t quit, this locked and loaded, full-bodied beast of a wine will be for patient consumers with cold cellars. It’s going to take a decade or more for it to be drinkable, but it might just be a 5- to 6-decade wine. 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.
Deep, bright-rimmed purple. An exotically perfumed, expressive bouquet evokes dark fruit liqueur, spicecake, smoky bacon, incense, vanilla and incense. A sexy floral nuance emerges with air and carries onto the palate, which displays intense blueberry, cherry liqueur, candied licorice and floral pastille flavors that deepen and spread out steadily on the back half. The floral, bacon and mineral notes come back strong on a strikingly long, youthfully tannic finish, that leaves a juicy blue fruit note behind. (JR)
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