E. Guigal

Crozes-Hermitage Blanc 2016

Crozes-Hermitage

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Crozes-Hermitage is the “entry” appellation to the Northern Rhône Valley, but there are very clearly quality vineyard sites that can produce wines of appealing complexity and depth. While not much Crozes-Hermitage white is produced, Guigal has become the most important producer of white wine in the Rhône Valley, and from their vineyards and in their hands, Crozes displays an expressiveness and brightness while also capturing the warmth of the area. Explosive and exotic floral and fruit aromas and flavors meld with intense mineral notes, and the silky, powerful concentration of flavors has an appealing roundness that finishes remarkably fresh.

Vineyard

Vineyards are from the Guigal estate holdings, with vines averaging 25 years of age and planted on soils of clay silt and sand and gravel. Yields are low at 2.1 tons per acre. It’s important to note that most of Crozes-Hermitage is produced from the plains to the south and east of Hermitage, and these wines tend to be straightforward. Guigal’s approach is to make a more serious Crozes that while maintaining its approachability, has vigor, intensity and depth.

Winemaking

The 95% Marsanne and 5% Roussanne wine was aged for 12 months, in stainless steel and a part in second use oak on the lees.

Vintage

Following the spectacular 2015 vintage in the Northern Rhône, the 2016 is another excellent vintage, though the path was not nearly as straightforward as in 2015. The spring was cool and wet and the vintage looking very late and complicated. Hot weather in July and no rain until September meant that vines were stressed from the other direction. A little bit of rain was needed at the end of September, and then a huge bit of luck to have good weather through October. That’s exactly what happened. The resulting wines have concentration with a lot of freshness, and an uncommon openness given the intensity of both these factors. We anticipate 2015/2016 to be a battle of quality and differing styles to be played out over many years.

Tasting Note

Golden, with aromas of white flowers (hawthorn) and acacia, and delicate notes of oak. Fine and elegant on the palate, with a full body, and lovely richness. Remarkable freshness, balancing finesse and richness.

Color

White

Appellation

Crozes-Hermitage

Suggested Retail Price

$33.00

Reviews

"Delightfully pure"

Wine Spectator - October 16, 2018 "Delightfully pure, with a mix of yellow apple, star fruit and white peach flavors racing through, lined with a bright honeysuckle thread. A kiss of lemon curd imparts roundness to the fresh finish."

"pure tangerine and honeysuckle flavors"

Josh Raynolds, Vinous Media - August 8, 2018 "Pale gold. Lively citrus and orchard fruit aromas show very good delineation and a lively mineral overtone. Silky and focused on the palate, offering pure tangerine and honeysuckle flavors and a refreshingly bitter pear skin nuance. In a taut, nervy style, especially in light of the vintage, delivering solid closing thrust and crackling minerality."

Trade Materials

Other Wines by this Producer

Côtes du Rhône Rouge

Given that this particular wine can be the introduction to the entire Rhône Valley for a drinker, as well as the position they occupy in the Rhône, it is not enough for the Guigals to make a good Côtes du Rhône. They are relentlessly driven to produce a distinctive and outstanding wine that drives interest in exploring the entirety of the Rhône.

Côtes du Rhône Blanc

Guigal’s Côtes du Rhône Blanc both sets and steps outside the standard for the appellation and showcases one of the great secrets of the Guigal family: their specialization in the great white Rhône varieties. While only 8% of the Rhône’s production is white, a full 25% of Guigal’s production is white and they are today the single largest producer of whites in the Rhône Valley.

Côtes du Rhône Rosé

The Guigal family has made serious dry rosé wines since the 1940s, and their Côtes du Rhône Rosé, like all their Côtes du Rhône wines, is humble in name only. The wine bursts with irresistible fresh red fruits and yet is also serious and satisfying. While this Rosé is always a lovely aperitif, its intensity and richness make it perfect for the table, and it pairs well with all manner of cuisines. And starting with the 2020 vintage, the wine has a stunning new proprietary bottle: a subtle enhancement for an already elegant wine!

Saint Joseph Vignes de l’Hospice

Saint-Joseph

Guigal’s Vignes de l’Hospice is one of the finest sites in the Northern Rhone Valley. This steeply terraced vineyard used to be divided into three, but Guigal now owns majority of this parcel in order to restore perception of Saint-Joseph as an appellation of utmost quality. In fact, Guigal is often asked when they will produce a fourth “LaLa,” and their response is that their fourth single vineyard phenomenon of the Northern Rhone is already being produced: the Vignes de l’Hospice.

Saint-Joseph Lieu Dit Rouge

Saint-Joseph

A result of its quality, Guigal’s Saint-Joseph Lieu Dit Rouge comes from the “Saint-Joseph” vineyard that gives the appellation its name. This site convinced the Guigals to work in Saint-Joseph and help to restore the historic perception of Saint-Joseph as an appellation of utmost quality. The 100% Syrah wine has complex and deep black fruit, floral, spice and mineral characteristics. Despite its concentration and powerful attack, the wine retains the trademark elegance that Saint-Joseph offers.

Saint-Joseph Lieu Dit Blanc

Saint-Joseph

A result of its quality, Guigal’s Saint-Joseph Blanc Lieu Dit comes from the “Saint-Joseph” vineyard that gives the appellation its name. This site convinced the Guigals to work in Saint-Joseph and help to restore the historic perception of Saint-Joseph as an appellation of utmost quality. Saint-Joseph Blanc is a serious wine, with weight and complexity, and is deeply reflective of its vineyard sites. A seamless balance of freshness and fruitiness, pleasure and interest, and flavors and structure. Guigal’s specialty in whites is especially evident in this wine, as it is almost a deceptively serious wine.

Ermitage Ex Voto Blanc

Hermitage

Ermitage Ex-Voto represents the fulfillment of a longtime dream of Marcel Guigal’s to own vineyard land on the hill of Hermitage. Through the purchase of the de Vallouit and J. L. Grippat domaines in
2000, Guigal acquired four exceptional vineyard parcels on this legendary site. The 2001 vintage was the first release of this estate-bottled Hermitage red and white. The quality of the intense old-vine fruit is quite special, but given the Guigal’s already strong work in Hermitage, they decided to only release an Ex-Voto red or white when the wine is utterly exceptional and clearly superior to their appellation bottlings.

Ermitage Ex Voto Rouge

Hermitage

Ermitage Ex-Voto represents the fulfillment of a longtime dream of Marcel Guigal’s to own vineyard land on the hill of Hermitage. Through the purchase of the de Vallouit and J. L. Grippat domaines in 2000, Guigal acquired four exceptional vineyard parcels on this legendary site. The 2001 vintage was the first release of this estate-bottled Hermitage red and white. The quality of the intense old-vine fruit is quite special, but given the Guigal’s already strong work in Hermitage, they decided to only release an Ex-Voto red or white when the wine is utterly exceptional and clearly superior to their appellation bottlings.

Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc

Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Guigal produces an intensely concentrated, inviting and complex Châteauneuf-du-Pape that is almost unique to the region today. Their passion for Châteauneuf, the leading appellation of the Southern Rhône, runs as deeply as that for their home sites in the Northern Rhône. The combination of working with top fruit that has perfect ripeness, along with their extraordinary patience in the cellar, results in rich and full, yet savory, spicy, seamless and balanced wines. Wines to enjoy immediately but capable of aging, and, above all, wines that leave you wanting more.

Condrieu La Doriane

Condrieu

La Doriane is a luxury cuvée of Condrieu that the Guigals have produced since the 1994 vintage. A great success since the first vintage, the wine always seems richly oaked and very fruity when young, transforming in 3-4 years into a seamlessly complex, aromatic and vibrant wine. La Doriane contradicts the accepted wisdom that Condrieu does not age well.