The name Chapoutier has been present in the Rhône Valley since 1808. Wine grower, wine maker and wine lover, Michel Chapoutier is one of France’s most dynamic wine producers, championing biodynamic viticulture and producing a consistent, impeccably high-quality range of wines from the prominent Northern and Southern Rhône Valley appellations.
Michel Chapoutier is one of the most highly regarded winemakers in France. Since taking over his family firm in 1990 at age 26, Michel Chapoutier has transformed the winery into the leading Rhône Valley producer. He combines the modern and the traditional: crusading for biodynamic winemaking, while expanding operations around the globe and experimenting with cutting edge winemaking techniques.
M Chapoutier, Ermitage Le Pavillon 2005 Hermitage Rouge 19/20? Drink 2018-30; Restrained but very complex nose. Extremely tight and tense and those shoulders are SO hunched up! Tingling on the palate, this wine is probably the best of the lot but it’s all hidden for the moment. Dry, tense, stone-like – this is textural rather than aromatic. Fine boned and rather academic and inscrutable. So dry! Very interesting wine though perhaps difficult to pick immediately as an Hermitage. Vines grown on a granite base and mature in half new oak.. Jancis Robinson. 2005 Rhone - Chapoutier Really Shines publication date: Dec 11, 2006
A legend of the future is the 2003 Ermitage Le Pavillon (659 cases). The equal of such stupendous examples as 1990 and 1989, the 2003 is incredibly rich as well as awesomely well-delineated and fresh. An inky/blue/purple color is followed by a subtle but impressively intense nose of barbecue smoke, creme de cassis, blueberries, blackberries, and white flowers. The wine cascades over the palate (15.8% natural alcohol) with extraordinary richness, intensity, and silkiness. This seamlessly constructed Hermitage is, analytically, high in tannin, but extremely low in acidity, with a freaky accessibility (a vintage character). Prodigiously concentrated and high in extract, it should last for a half century or longer. It will be fascinating to follow over the next several decades. Drink 2006 - 2056, Wine Advocate # 163; Feb 2006 Robert Parker 100
An awesome effort, the 2003 Ermitage La Pavillon is produced from an old vineyard in Les Bessards. Tasting this wine is akin to a religious drinking experience. An endlessly complex, extraordinarily rich, complicated offering, it may last a century. There are 500 cases of this wine, which smells like acacia flowers intermixed with black currant liqueur, melted licorice, Chinese black tea, and incense. With supple tannin, an unctuous texture, and a massive finish, this is a legend in the making. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2060+. As I have said so many times over the last 15 years, the top Chapoutier wines are meant for very long term drinking, and are not designed for immediate gratification. Everything Chapoutier is doing, from his bio-dynamically farmed vineyard to tiny yields, extended fermentations, indigenous yeasts, and no fining or filtration, is done to produce the essence of a vineyard and a vintage. His track record since 1989 and 1990 admirably proves that these are indeed remarkable wines made by a young genius who refuses to compromise. Michel Chapoutier has been misunderstood by some of his peers, and there is a lot of jealousy when someone this young is so incredibly talented, but it is an irrefutable fact that these are wines of singular greatness as well as longevity. Drink 2015 - 2060; Wine Advocate # 156; Dec 2004 Robert Parker (99-100)
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