Rhone 2012 En Primeur

Rhone 2012 Vintage Report

Following a poor spring and consequently a difficult flowering, the Southern Rhone enjoyed a dry, sunny summer. Ideal conditions prevailed at veraison but, by the end of August, a prolonged hot, drought was beginning to have an impact on the vines. Happily, the beginning of September brought some welcome, refreshing rains and the grapes had achieved ideal physiological ripeness and were in a healthy state, by the time harvesting began. Volumes are down by about 30% compared with an average vintage. The resulting wines exhibit great richness, freshness of fruit, exquisite balance and ripe, elegant tannins.

The Northern Rhone experienced a difficult, rainy spring and growers had to combat frequent attacks of mildew. However, from the middle of July until the end of August, the weather was excellent. After some rain in early September, the grapes were picked in dry and sunny conditions and were ripe and healthy. Volumes are down by about 20% overall. Although generalizations are difficult, some excellent reds have been produced - ranging from the dense, powerful and full-bodied, to wines with more elegance and freshness. Alcohol and acidity levels are moderate and the wines are well structured.

Some seriously delicious white wines have been produced throughout the Rhone Valley in 2012. They are multi-layered, fresh and elegant with lots of finesse and depth. The latest edition of the Wine Advocate was released last week, containing Rhône expert Jeb Dunnuck's much anticipated review of the 2012 (and 2011) southern Rhône vintage. The Southern Rhone has had a superb run of vintages over the past decade and 2012 is no exception.

Dunnuck, who has recently taken over responsibility for the Rhône from Parker, feels that 2012 surpasses 2011 in terms of quality and that the vintage has produced wines that are "rich" and "fruit-loaded". He goes on to say that "2012 was a sunny, dry vintage that should slot in beside, or slightly behind, 2009, in terms of quality... Coming closest, in my mind, to a lighter styled 2010, the wines possess pretty, dark fruit and mineral-styled aromatics, medium to full-bodied richness and good, not great, concentration... The majority of these will be approachable on release, yet have graceful aging curves as well, with the top releases having 15-20 years of evolution. Alcohol levels are down, and the wines have good to moderate acidity with fine, polished tannins and overall approachable profiles." He also states that 2012 is a great vintage for the whites: "showing beautiful purity, they're fresher than the 2011s... they will deliver immense pleasure over the coming 2-3 years."

View the James Nicholson Rhône 2012 brochure Here

Rhône Wine Week

Put the dates in your diary, 3rd - 8th November 2014. We are delighted to let you know that we are now plotting and planning and generally getting ready for Rhône Wine Week 2014. For more info please visit the website by clicking the logo below.

 photo Rhone_Wine_Week_zps8185c02c.jpg


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Rhone, France

Perret Condrieu Chery 2012

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Pack of 12 x 750 ml Bottle "Much better balance between oak and fruit here than in the Clos Chanson. Touch of orange on the nose, sour citrus freshness and marked intensity and length. Needs time to meld and become less strident. A slight bitterness on the finish. 17 pts. Drink 2014 - 2017." (Julia Harding, Jancis Robinson Purple Pages, 17 Nov 2013).
Broad, rice nose and well-directed finesse on the palate. Will amuse and provoke.18 pts. (Decanter magazine, April 2014).
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Case Price: £399.49 / €534.60   (info) (bottle: £33.29 / €44.55)
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Rhone, France

Perret Condrieu 2012

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Pack of 12 x 750 ml Bottle "Apricot and a touch of spice but not especially deep in flavour. Savoury from the oak with an almond-kernel note on the finish. 16 pts. Drink 2013 - 2015." (Julia Harding, Jancis Robinson Purple Pages, 17 Nov 2013).
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Case Price: £323.89 / €431.89   (info) (bottle: £26.99 / €35.99)
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Rhone, France

Perret Saint Joseph Red 2012

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Pack of 12 x 750 ml Bottle André Perret began making wine from his family's vineyards in 1979. The estate covers about 10 hectares of vines, some of which enjoy positions in the very top sites of their appellation, burrowing into tiny, steep granite terraces. André's winemaking philosophy involves minimal intervention letting the vineyards express their terroir naturally.
"Pure and subtle Syrah perfume. Peppery and dark but with a lift of sweetness. Inviting. Relatively light on the palate, deliciously fresh and thirst quenching. Finest of dry tannins. It will probably last longer but I would drink it on the fruit. 16 pts. Drink 2014 - 2016." (Julia Harding, Jancis Robinson Purple Pages, 17 Niv 2013).
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Case Price: £205.09 / €280.69   (info) (bottle: £17.09 / €23.39)
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Rhone, France

Dom. Vincent Paris Cornas Granit 30 2012

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Pack of 12 x 750 ml Bottle The 2012 Rhône vintage is looking extremely promising with wines that are full of fruit and flavour. As wine commentator Jancis Robinson opines: My guess is that, with the short 2012 vintage and burgundy in general becoming of greater and greater interest to Asian and American wine buyers, the Rhône will become of increasing interest to wine lovers everywhere - not least because the 2012 vintage was apparently very promising in the Rhône, too, certainly the southern Rhône. (Jancis Robinson Purple Pages, 12 June 2013).
"Vincent Paris is a child of Cornas and his biodynamically run estate now encompasses around 17-18 acres, from which he fashions three remarkable cuvees, the Granite 30, Granite 60 Vieilles Vignes and an offering from the well-known parcel of La Geynale. Paris has enjoyed three consecutive remarkable vintages (as have a number of the finest Cornas producers), 2009, 2010 and 2011. The Granite 30 generally comes from the lower hillside parcels of a lieu-dit called Mazards with soils that are mostly decomposed granite. These are also his youngest vines. You would never know that by tasting what Paris has produced in 2011 and 2010. The Granite 60 comes from three separate parcels of a lieu-dit called Sauman, which is opposite of another famous lieu-dit called Reynard. As Paris says, this is an area that gives more body as well as freshness than other terroirs in Cornas. Vines planted in these three parcels are 20, 60 and 100 years of age." (eRobertParker.com, Dec 2012).
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Rhone, France

Brunier Cndp Piedlong Red 2012 Pk 6

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Pack of 6 x 750 ml Bottle This is the maiden release of Piedlong - a Châteauneuf-du-Pape that is made mostly from very old Grenache planted on an extremely stony, windswept, unirrigated high plateau. A wine made according to a philosophy at once traditional (some stemmed grapes and lengthy maceration) and hands-off and aged in large barrels for two years will surely tend towards a balance of richness and elegance. This is certainly the case with Piedlong: right from its first vintage, it has made its mark with a real personality, hitherto concealed in the estate's general blendings.
"A new wine that will now replace the l'Accent cuvee from Domaine la Roquete (and going forward, there will be no more red wine produced from the la Roquete estate), the 2012 Piedlong Chateauneuf du Pape is a superb looking tank sample. Comprised of 90% Grenache and 10% Mourvedre and vinified all in wood tank, with 30% whole-cluster, it possesses medium to full-bodied richness, firm tannin and excellent purity, with plenty of blackberry fruit, dried spice and licorice on the nose. Give it a couple years in the cellar and it should impress through 2024. Drink 2016-2024. 91-93 pts." (Jeb Dunnock, eRobertParker.com, Oct 2013).
Price shown is under bond and excludes VAT & duty.
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