When I worked as a wine agent, I developed some pretty serious crushes. We represented some of the great wine-making families in the world and naturally, a person develops preferences.

Of my favorites, the wines of M.Chapoutier were always at the top. Like our firm, it was a family owned and run operation and we worked with Michel and Marc the competitive brothers who both worked hard for their family business.

Time rolls along and these days Michel is the owner and winemaker at Chapoutier, having embraced the biodynamic philosophy of Rudolf Steiner. Steiner was the nineteenth century scientist and mystic who first envisioned a farm as an organism itself. He developed the principles of biodynamic farming which are now practiced the world over.

It had been awhile since I had the chance to taste some of the higher end wines that Chapoutier produce so I was excited to taste them with Juanita,my new boss at Color di Vino on Whyte Ave. We started with the Beaurevoir Tavel Rose as the reception wine. It’s an outstanding dry rose that should be on everyone’s summer table. Led by the charming Laure Garnier, we then tasted:

Hermitage Chante Allouette (Blanc) 2012

Clear sunny yellow gold. Scents of dusty old garage, honey and bacon fat. Big and fat on the nose. Slick Marsanne attack, fresh bright and creamy at once. Creamy notes of melon with a fresh nutty citrus profile. Incredible clear aftertaste of ginger! From 40-50 year old vines +761522 …50-70 years aging potential. Very small production of white Hermitage. Great with the crab cakes.

Ermitage Cuvee de L-Oree Blanc 2011

Bright sunny gold. Scented of clean motor oil, meat and buttered toast. (Aged in oak barrels.) Notes of lemon and peony too. Absolutely silken attack that opens to honey and roasted almonds…very like the yoghurt with nuts and honey I used to have for breakfast in Molivos. +701620

Cote Rotie La Mordoree Rouge 2011

Dense dark mid ruby. Oh man! Complex nose of black olive, bubble gum, dirt, band aids and nuts. Silky mouth feel that opens to wide chewy tannins. It’s bright and fresh with blackberry and rosemary on the palate too. Lovely. +434746

Ermitage Le Meal Rouge 2011

Brilliant dark mid ruby. From clay soil. Smells like Value Village(!) celeriac, red plum and spice. Elegant attack of wide open fruit and insistent tannin. There’s a lovely floral character riding on a truly earthy backbone. Smells like rain on hot stones.  +434746 ❤

Ermitage L’Ermite Rouge 2011

Velvet mid ruby hue. From granite soil. Fresh clean laundry, violet and hyacinth with a hint of black rubber and rhubarb and the scent of raspberry plant cuttings.From new and 1-year-old oak barrels. Wonderfully fruity attack that opens to expressive tannin and a very structured balance. Just amazing! Age for 50 – 75 years. +703910 ❤

Ermitage Le Pavillon Rouge 2011

Deep velvet ruby hue. Sandalwood, sweat and black cherry plush black plum and a hint of black licorice. Bright chewy attack that offers hints of tobacco and cocoa. As you tip the glass to taste, floral notes of tulip emerge. The finish is deep and lasting. It just stays on the palate staining it with perfection. +701618 ❤

What a privilege to taste such elegant wines! Prices have not been included because it has to be understood that wines of this quality and nature truly are priceless. The places you find them will be made better simply by their presence.

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