One of the powerhouses of the Rhône and a name synonymous with beautifully crafted wines from some of the regions finest vineyard sites. After 15 years working at Vidal-Fleury, Etienne Guigal formed his own estate in 1946, joined by his son Marcel in 1961 and by 1984, they had purchased Vidal-Fleury and took control of 35% of the Côte Rôtie harvest. They purchased the Château d'Ampuis in 1995, today fully restored, it is the headquarters of the estate and home to the Guigal cooperage. Marcel's son, Phillipe is the winemaker and Guigal produce a range of stunning wines from across the terroirs of the Rhône.
A pure aromatic smorgasbord is offered by the 2003 Cote Rotie La Turque, which has an amazing aromatic profile of espresso coffee interwoven with scorched earth, tar, truffle, incense, blackberry, bacon fat, and flowers. Powerful, thick flavors ooze across the palate with a viscous texture, amazing purity, and just enough acidity and tannin to give uplift and precision to this remarkable tour de force in winemaking. Of the 2003s, this is also approachable, but ideally 2-5 years of cellaring would be suggested, and the wine will evolve for at least 30 more years. Drink 2009 - 2037; 100/100 Robert Parker; Wine Advocate # 170
The 2003 Cote Rotie La Turque reveals an incredible nose of incense, black truffles, blackberries, espresso roast, roasted meats, melted road tar, tapenade, and bacon. A meaty, full-bodied, extraordinarily concentrated wine with a viscous texture, a remarkable finish, and even more tannin and body than La Mouline, it requires 4-5 years of cellaring, and should drink well over the following 30+. Marcel and Philippe Guigal, never content to rest on their already impressive credentials, announced that in the future, they expect to release another single vineyard Cote Rotie from a 3.7 acre parcel in the Viria vineyard on the Cote Brune. The first vintage or two will probably be added to the Chateau d’Ampuis. If the potential turns out to be as exceptional as they believe, lovers of these great wines will have a fourth single vineyard Cote Rotie called Viria to contemplate. Drink 2010 - 2040; (99-100/100) Robert Parker; Wine Advocate # 163
This is a prodigious effort that may eclipse any other vintage Guigal has ever produced! It possesses similarities to the 1999, but it is even higher in alcohol, more unctuously textured, thicker, and longer. Encapsulate the character of this single vineyard in a top year, add more depth, intensity, alcohol, and power, and this describes this freakishly rich 2003. It will be released after spending 42 months in 100% new oak casks, so consumers will have to wait until 2008 to purchase this stupendous gem. This 2003 is literally off the charts, as are many of the northern Rhones in this vintage. La Turque should last 30-35 years. This is the stuff of modern day legends. As for what it actually tastes like, just take my notes for any of the great vintages and add more power, glycerin, alcohol, tannin, and concentration ... that about defines this 2003! Drink 2004 - 2039; (99-100/100) Robert Parker; Wine Advocate # 156
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