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JL Chave Selection Hermitage Blanc Blanche 2013
- Great Domaines
all ratings out of 100 points.
85% Marsanne; 15% Roussanne
The Chave family has been the king of the hill in Hermitage for over 500 years. The domaine exploded in 1970, when Gerard Chave took over the reins from his father. Gerard’s wines were of incredible quality, and a rapid ascent to wine rockstardom soon followed. Gerard has since handed over to his son Jean-Louis, who now runs the domaine. That is not to say that Gerard has retired - he is still actively involved in the 15 hectares of vine parcels across the diverse climate of Hermitage. Jean-Louis is a thoughtful grower with massive insight into his craft. In his own words, “We bottle with the old moon.”
Their cellar is a calm and tranquil place. Jean-Louis is not a man of many words. He doesn’t need to be. His wines do all the talking.
Great Domaines has been trying to bring their wines into South Africa for many years, so our first visit here was quite emotional. Erin, Jean-Louis’ wife, gave us an incredible down-to-earth welcome. We felt right at home. It was incredibly rewarding to finally be granted a visit to the estate and be assigned as their South African importers. A real privilege.
The family have recently formed a small négociant arm to their domaine. This allows consumers access to some fine bottles from the Rhône Valley - not only crafted by Jean-Louis but also at prices that won’t break the bank.