Guigal’s Hermitage Rouge is a true expression of the Northern Rhône Valley, where the red wines have a profile unlike anywhere else in the world, an irresistible combination of warm flavors of red and black fruit and exotic spice notes that bring great pleasure.
Hermitage is one of France’s most spectacular and famous appellations within the Rhône, producing small quantities of extraordinarily intense and ageworthy red wine and tiny amounts of dry white. The entire vineyard consists of 309 acres planted on a single granite hillside on the banks of the Rhône. In Guigal’s hands, the Hermitage Rouge is a racy wine, that manages to remain seductive.
The Guigals own 4 parcels in Hermitage, planted on limestone, clay loam and sandy topsoils that lie above the granite mother rock. To supplement this, they will also purchase grapes from small growers. Overall, vine age averages 30 years.
Hermitage is picked by hand before undergoing a vinification of around 3 weeks in temperature controlled stainless steel vats.
The wine is aged for 30-36 months in barrels coopered exclusively by Guigal, 50% of which were new. Bottling was without fining or filtration. This robust and powerful wine especially needs the extended aging both in barrel and in bottle before release so that it can integrate and develop its bouquet and palate of black fruits, minerality and game.
2018 is now confirmed as one of the truly great vintages in the Northern Rhône valley. Following a very wet Spring, Summer was dry and hot – the warmest vintage since 2003. Harvest was quick and early, starting on the last day of August and finishing in Côte Rôtie on September 20th. Yields were slightly above average, but the fruit was uniformly ripe, with some vineyards in Côte Rôtie coming in at 15o potential. Due to the heat, the vineyards on the elevated slopes fared best, and Cote Rotie, Hermitage, and the granitic-terraced sites in Saint-Joseph and Crozes excelling. The red wines are dense and concentrated, with exceptionally deep color and rich tannins, similar to 2015 but with even more intensity. The whites are rich, juicy, and succulent.
This is a wine that displays deep rub red with violet tinges. The nose opens with spices, red berries and delicate oak aromas. The palate is typical of a powerful wine with strong tannic structure. Aromas of blackcurrant buds and vanilla follow, with a spicy licorice finish. In conclusion, the wine is racy and seductive, perfect for putting down.
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Vinous - December 22, 2022 "Opaque violet color. Highly perfumed aromas of ripe cherry, dark berry preserves, candied flowers, olive and smoky minerals. Juicy and broad in the mouth, offering spice-tinged bitter cherry, blackberry, licorice and fruitcake flavors that show fine clarity and turn sweeter as the wine opens up. Finishes on an emphatic floral note, displaying strong tenacity, steadily building tannins and reverberating dark berry and spice notes." - J.R 12/22
Wine Spectator - February 4, 2022 "This has a showy side, with expressive singed vanilla, alder and mocha notes leading the way, followed by plush plum and blackberry compote flavors. The finish pulls in warm earth and iron hints, adding cut and range." - J.M 2/22
Other Wines by this Producer
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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 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 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.
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.
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.