The highly sought-after appellation of Hermitage is named after the tiny chapel at its highest point (once home to hermits). Most do not realize Hermitage is comprised of just a few hilltops with very dense terrior. Steep southerly facing terraces with unique microclimates drive rich complexity in the wines. In Hermitage, Marsanne is able to make some of the world's top and most long-lived whites. The vineyard from which the grapes are selected is located at the top of the Hermitage slop and extends down to the bottom, near the Meal vineyard. The soil is made of loess and covered with chalky clay and it is managed utilizing various biodynamic practices.
The color is a brilliant, golden green.
On the nose the wine is complex and subtle, with aromas of quince, honey, ginger, accacia with a hint of lime blossom.
In the mouth the wine is powerful without harshness, with a finish that reminds one of almond. Very elegant and long on the finish.
Pairs well with fois gras, crayfish, lobster, poultry in sauces, white meats, goat cheese, blue cheese, spicy dishes and curry.
"Really lush, with chamomile, sweet butter, macadamia nut, citrus peel and yellow apple flavors that pump through the rich, layered finish, where hints of fig and green tea echo. Very accessible now, but there's also purity and balance for aging. Drink now through 2020. "
"One of the top successes for Chapoutier is his sensational white wine, the 2006 Ermitage Chante Alouette. One of the finest examples of this cuvee he has yet made, this wine possesses tons of glycerin, an oily texture, and huge, rich, marmalade and buttery notes intermixed with notions of white currants and quince. A full-bodied, intense, dry white, it is meant to be consumed with intensely flavored cuisines. It should evolve for 10-15+ years."
The Wine Advocate