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, Syrah achieves its noblest expression. The vineyard from which the grapes are selected is located near the Meal and Greffieux vineyards. The soil is varied, comprised in the west of granite (which forms the soul of good Hermitage wines), old alluvial terraces with gravel and rolled pebbles, and limon with rolled stones in the east. It is managed utilizing various biodynamic practices.
The color is
deep garnet red with purple highlights.
The wine has aromas of red fruit (raspberry and black currant) with a hint of licorice.
And in the mouth it is round and elegant with soft and concentrated tannins, and a long finish.
"Slightly firm, with taut, sinewy tannins driving the black cherry, currant, tobacco and mineral notes. Hints of purple fruit and flowers on the focused finish. Drink now through 2014."
"Chapoutier's biggest cuvée of Hermitage is the relatively affordable Monier de Sizeranne, a smoky, spicy rendition that’s a pretty classic rendition. Peppery notes accent the raspberry, cherry and red fruit flavors that finish with crisp acids. Nicely done, with silky tannins on the finish. Drink now–2015."
"The concentrated ripeness is heady and intense, showing crushed black cherry flavors mingled with more exotic notes of tea leaf and sandalwood. Yet it still carries a sense of place, a prominent mineral character pushing insistently to the foreground alongside the dense fruit. Give it another three to five years in the cellar to settle down."
Wine & Spirits