June 22, 2018 - Paired with grilled lamb loin chops after hiking the gorgeous California Coastal Trail from Lagoon Creek to Klamath Overlook. Garnet color with lightening at the edges. Nose of wild lavender, dark berry, currant, rosemary, deep earth. Freshness and vitality on the palate with layers of blackberry, plum, thyme, rocky earth, and hints of black cherry. Could almost taste the sunshine. Just the right amount of acidity and almost fully resolved tannin. Long finish of black juicy fruits on a frame of solid rock. Provence in a glass.
January 28, 2018 - The last of a case, and drunk with La Migoua of the same vintage, also the last of a case. La Tourtine has a higher percentage of Mourvedre (maybe 80%) and about about 10% each of Cinsault and Grenache, plus a dash of Syrah. This was lighter in colour, red fading to orange with a hint of brown, and initially more reticent on the nose. Like the Migoua, it evolved massively over several hours, and more than once I was questioning whether I'd poured the wrong wine into the wrong glass. (I hadn't.) Ultimately, I preferred the precision in the Tourtine, its fresheness and its subtle blend of black cherry, frangipani, citric peel, and apples maybe just turning to cider. One could very easily have called it as a Barolo. These impressions on the nose translated very nicely onto the palate, and there was just the right amount of acidity to sear the flavours into the memory. Such a great privilege to try these two cuvees side by side in their 20th year.
November 12, 2017 - Medium red, no bricking. Still tannins to resolve. Medium body. Licorice, tobacco, herbs. Black fruit. Animal notes, which I like. It was very good, and easy to drink now, but I would hold for another 5 years to let the tannins continue to ease up.
March 31, 2016 - Never really got going
Dumb nose initialy but a definite perceptible level of acetone which never went away
Opened up on the nose with some nice spice and orange peel notes but thin and reedy on the palate with a very short finish
May 17, 2015 - A little more evolved than I thought it would be. Still, nice earthy notes with sappy fruit. Pretty textbook mourvedre with a little bit of juiciness from a drop of Grenache.
April 11, 2015 - Took a few hours to open up - was a little rough and disjointed at first. After three hours, lovely, elegant and open. Burgundian in body and weight but still very Bandol - saddle leather, garrique and brambly red fruit. Neither old or young - in a nice in-between place.
January 30, 2015 - Mourvedre BYO (Michaels place): Elegant fruit but overall a quite funky wine. It has a clean and fresh touch to it but also harsh tannins, leather and manure.
Overall it is quite off balance and just weird.
August 17, 2014 - Tasted earlier today at chez Berard in la Cadiere D'Azur in sight of le Castellet and the La Tourtine vineyard where the fruit in this wine slumbered 16 summers ago. Sommelier popped and poured. Deep garnet color with an immediate waft of cherries, plums, leather, damp earth and lavender which only grew over the course of a 2 plus hour meal. Absolutely stunning on the palette, open and generous with fruit, solid tannins and a pleasing dash of acidity -- along with a voluptuous finish. Eclipsed any Bordeaux or Napa cab I've ever had. Had the silky, perfumed quality of a great Burgundy but with a brooding undercurrent that whispered "Mourvèdre". We had a half bottle of the 2002 - shut down completely and nowhere near ready (not a fair comparison!). This one outperformed even the '01 la Tourtine which is one of my all time favorite wines. We are changing our travel plans to allow for one more meal and tasting on Thursday before returning to NY. Well-nigh perfect.
March 12, 2014 - Surprisingly elegant. At first, the nose was lacking clarity, unfocused and we even thought there was a slight TCA note. After 30mn, it totally change and started to emerge from its awkwardness. Very elegant, Burgundian in style. Earthy, leather with cherry notes and other red fruits. Hint of herbs. Fine minerality. Not for the long term ageing but vey nice.
January 12, 2014 - Similar to previous notes. Fabulous with porcini mushroom risotto and grilled lamb.