Robert Parker 95
A 1,000-case blend of 80% Marsanne and 20% Roussanne, the profound 2000 Hermitage blanc boasts a terrific perfume of honeysuckle, white flowers, peaches, citrus, and minerals. Displaying an unctuous texture along with tremendous glycerin, richness, and depth, it will undoubtedly close down after a few years in the bottle, but for now, it is a spectacularly rich, multidimensional white Hermitage to drink young, then forget about for 5-10 years, after which it will last for 15-20 years. This family-run estate continues to go from strength to strength, with the father and son (Gerard and Jean-Louis) team pushing all the right buttons to achieve success at all quality levels. Jean-Louis Chave is responsible for several negociant wines. Importers: Langdon Shiverick, Cleveland, OH; tel. (216) 861-6800 and Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant, Berkeley, CA; tel. (510) 524-1524
Anticipated maturity: 2008-2023
Reticent nose opened with aeration to reveal lemon, honey, licorice, hay, mirabelle and lanolin. Rich but tightly wound; at once powerful and subtle. Flavors of orchard and citrus fruits and spring flowers. Finishes very long and fine. This is still very closed following the September bottling and will almost certainly merit a higher score with time in bottle.