2006 Domaine Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage

SKU #1047711 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Chave's 2006 Hermitage is a fabulous example of the classic style of the estate, as well as of the more forward, charming nature of the vintage. Offering up a gorgeous bouquet of caramelized black fruits, cassis, tapenade, spring flowers and an undeniable minerality, this beautiful Hermitage is fresh, lively and incredibly elegant on the palate, yet still packs gorgeous amounts of fruit and texture, with plenty of wow factor. While still youthful, it delivers loads of pleasure, and will keep for another two decades or more. (JD)  (2/2017)

96 points Wine Spectator

 This is all elegance, with sleek, fine-grained structure carrying red currant, black cherry and damson plum notes that in turn give way to singed mesquite, saddle leather and lilac. A lovely sanguine edge has already appeared on the finish, but the acidity is still more than fresh. The finish echoes with fruit, iron and saucisson sec notes. (JM, Web Only—2012)

95 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Deep ruby with a bright rim. Sexy aromas of red and dark fruit preserves, potpourri, allspice and smoky minerals. Juicy, extremely pure raspberry and mulberry flavors are complemented by notes of violet and rose pastille, with tangy minerality providing spine. A spherical, seamless wine that delivers a wallop of sweet fruit while maintaining admirable restraint and focus. Finishes with terrific cut and lingering spiciness. Manages to be powerful and wiry at the same time; this will live a long time on balance and energy. (JR)  (2/2010)

Jancis Robinson

 Nervy but rich and great fun. Very slightly bretty. Very dry. (18/20 points)  (4/2013)

K&L Notes

97 points Neal Martin's Wine Journal: "Tasted from Yapp’s reserves at a private vertical. Compared to the 2005, the 2006 Hermitage from J-L Chave is earthier and more broody, but there are obviously tightly coiled black fruits that are destined to unwind in coming years, perhaps with melted tar and cracked black pepper. The palate is medium-bodied, beautifully balanced, the tannins a little “thicker” than the 2005 and certainly with more weight towards the finish that lacquers the mouth in pure...Hermitage. Fantastic. The kind of wine that leaves you desperate for an original superlative! Drink 2015-2035. Tasted March 2009."

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Price: $209.99
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- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.


- Legendary wine-producing region in southeast France. Stereotypically speaking, Rhone wines are high in alcohol, and the majority produced is red. The northern Rhone is best known for outstanding 100% Syrah wines from areas such as Cote Rotie and Hermitage, as well as for fabulous white wines from Condrieu (where Viognier is king). In the southern Rhone, look for spicy, full-bodied wines that are blends of Grenache, Syrah, and other varietals coming from appellations such as Chateauneuf du Pape, Gigondas, or Rasteau. Wines labeled as Cote du Rhone or Cotes du Rhone Village (a cut above generic Cotes du Rhone) are frequently found here in the US because they often represent some of the best values on the market.
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