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2014 Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage Blanc

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RATINGS

98Wine Spectator

Honeysuckle, verbena and chamomile aromas stream out first, followed by a remarkably creamy core of yellow apple, white peach, heather honey and warm mirabelle plum notes. Hazelnut oil and brioche line the finish, adding considerable length. Despite all the lushness and depth, this manages to maintain a sense of tension and precision as well. An amazing wine.

95The Wine Advocate

...terrific minerality as well as classic stone fruits, buttered citrus, honeysuckle and crushed rock, full-bodied richness and an elegant, fresh, pure style.

95Vinous / IWC

... Vibrant, mineral-accented citrus and pit fruits, honey and nougat on the intensely perfumed nose, joined by a suave floral nuance. Shows superb depth as well as vivacity, offering sappy orange, pear and nectarine flavors supported a firm spine of smoky minerality. The floral and mineral elements come back strong on the bright, sharply focused, extremely long finish, which leaves a candied lemon zest note behind.

REGION

France, Rhône Valley, Northern Rhône, Hermitage

The Northern Rhône Valley wine region hugs the Rhône River from Vienne in the north to Valence at its southern tip. The French call the region Côtes du Rhône Septentrionales, and it is divided into eight appellations. Along with its neighbor to the south, the Southern Rhone Valley, it is famous for its big, tannic, intensely concentrated wines. Syrah is the only red grape permitted in AOC wines from this sub-region, though the Syrah can be blended with the white wine grapes Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne, depending on the regulations for each AOC. White wines are made from Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne. Of the eight appellations in the north, the most admired wines tend to come from Côte-Rôtie, Condrieu and Hermitage, though there are certainly exceptional wines to be found in St. Joseph, Crozes-Hermitage, St.-Peray, Crozes-Hermitage and Cornas. Along with Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne, Rhône wines are among France’s best known and most collected wines. Red wines from these appellations are notable for their signature aromas of bacon and green olives, and for their depth. Robert M. Parker, a great champion of Rhone wines, has written that “the northern Rhône produces three of the greatest wines in the world – the white wines of Condrieu and the red wines of Côte-Rôtie and Hermitage.”