Ermitage Rouge ‘Le Méal’, M Chapoutier, Hermitage, Northern Rhone, France, 2012
2.2ha, 100% Syrah
This wine is produced with grapes coming from Le Méal hillside (150-200 metres altitude). It takes its name from the old French word meaning “the best”. This slope is composed of high terraces of shingles and clay. Vines are over 50 years old. The wine is characterised by a supple character, a fine balance and intense fruit aromas. Yields are again exceptionally low, at around 20 hl/ha. Le Méal produces wines with great perfume, richness and amazing ageing potential. The nose exhibits a ripe fruit character, with rich, stewed blackberries and powerful but velvety tannins on the palate.
"Showing similar to last year, the 2012 Ermitage le Meal is a blockbuster that's about as voluptuous and sexy as Hermitage gets. Loaded with cassis, black raspberry, leather, dried violets and wild herbs, this beauty is full-bodied, has tons of sweet tannin and brilliant purity of fruit. Given its wealth of material, low acidity and incredible texture, it should drink well all of its life." 98/100 Jeb Dunnuck robertparker.com