The afternoon of our second day on the road was joyous as the wines of Guillaume Gilles and Domaine Lionnet are simply magical.
GILLES: Guillaume started harvest early in 2018, the 4th of September. He reports a bountiful harvest of excellent quality. The ‘17s have brilliant potential. The new “Rieux” Cornas is less structured than the classic cuvee of Chaillots, Terrasses and Grands Murs. There is a charming Gamay de la Vallée du Doux that we will have to campaign for to obtain an allocation.
Same goes for the Peyrouses Blanc in ‘16 with a production of 600 bottles.
The 2016 reds are more supple than the ‘17s and should present well on arrival despite their youth. This is a domaine that clients should just take whatever they can get their hands on.
LIONNET: Ludovic and Corinne started harvest in ‘18 a few days later than Gilles … Sept 7 with slightly lower yields (34 hL/ha) than Guillaume achieved. This Domaine suffered significant loss in2017 as a frost reduced the ultimate harvest by 40%! (22hl/ha). The resulting wines are outstanding with excellent concentration. A St Joe Blanc is in the works here for future release. As for the upcoming 2016 vintage, the wines are in bottle and are gorgeous: lots of material, dense, lovely assemblage for the Cornas “classique”. The St Joe Rouge Terre Neuve is now a more complete wine as the vines are 6 to 8 years old and producing juice of more character.
More commentary to follow.