Georges Vernay Condrieu Coteau de Vernon 2012 Front Label
Georges Vernay Condrieu Coteau de Vernon 2012 Front Label

Georges Vernay Condrieu Coteau de Vernon 2012

  • RP96
  • WS95
  • W&S93
750ML / 0% ABV
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  • JD99
  • WS97
  • RP96
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Winemaker Notes

The Coteau de Vernon is the very heart of the Condrieu appellation and that of our estate and the wine which carries its name offers the most complex and yet subtle expressions of viognier. It is a wine with a restrained exuberance, a quintessential Condrieu. In its early years it offers great concentration, a strength that dares not reveal itself. It is only after many years in the cellar that it fully and truly expresses itself. Best drunk between 2 and 15 years.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 96
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Seeing the same élevage as the Chaillées de l’Enfer, and from the famed Coteau de Vernon vineyard (which is right beside the plot used for the l’Enfer), the 2012 Condrieu Coteaux du Vernon is deeper and richer, with a classy perfume of white peach, citrus blossom, salty minerality, lychee and exotic flowers. Medium to full-bodied, supple, rounded and forward, with a decadent texture that never seems heavy, there are few Condrieu I’d rather drink.
WS 95
Wine Spectator
Juicy and energetic, with a big core of Bosc pear, green almond, fig and anise notes, lined with melon rind and bitter almond hints through the lengthy finish. The mineral edge should help this cellar well in the near term. For those who like a softer, broader feel.
W&S 93
Wine & Spirits
This comes from a five-acre plot in the center of Condrieu, where the 50- to 80-year-old vines face east on a slope rich in biotite, a type of granite. In 2012, they produced a full-bodied concentrated wine, ripe without being sweet or heavy. It's so stony it feels almost austere, the pear-like fruit girded with mineral tones, firm and long lasting. Toasty oak bathes it all in a warm, golden light. This is built to age; put it away for five to ten years.
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Georges Vernay

Georges Vernay

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Georges Vernay, France
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Condrieu is the original home of the Viognier grape, having been planted here since the Roman occupation in the third century. In 1940 it was officially made an appellation. In those early days, it was Georges Vernay and his father Francis who were instrumental in guiding the appellation into the future. Francis served as the first treasurer for the Condrieu Growers' Union and it was George who was influential in delimiting the boundaries of the appellation to ensure that only those wines from the vines planted on the steep, granite hillsides could call themselves Condrieu. In 1996, Christine Vernay took over the family domaine after her father Georges retired. Under her watch, the wines have become even more delicate and nuanced. In addition to world class Viognier, she has been crafting some of the top Côte-Rôtie here, and critics have taken notice. In 2013, Christine was given the prestigious award of "Winemaker of the Year" by Bettane & Dessauve.

A pioneer in the renewal of the Condrieu appellation, Domaine Georges Vernay has always made wines of unique style, notable for their finesse, elegance and harmony. The property has become a major emblem of Rhone Valley winegrowing, from the time when Georges Vernay saved the Condrieu appellation to the international awards earned by Christine Vernay’s Côte-Rôtie. Three generations have left the mark of the philosophy on the estate, while perpetuating its traditions in the greatest respect for both vines and winegrowers.

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As the source of some of the most vibrant and powerful white wines in France, Condrieu is uniquely situated in one of the northern outposts of the Rhone River. It is the original Viognier appellation with a wine growing history reaching back well over two thousand years. Like most of the wine regions of the Northern Rhone, Condrieu’s vines grow on extremely steep and narrow granite terraces. But what makes the region unique is a topsoil, locally called, “arzelle,” made of decomposed mica. This and a sheltering of the harsh northern winds, make optimal sites to produce opulent and brilliant Viognier. It is a tiny zone with no room for expansion and produces miniscule amounts of wine each year, contributing to its allure.

A fine Condrieu will have aromas and flavors suggestive of ripe stone fruit, lime peel, green almond, ginger, white flowers and toasted nuts. A honeyed smell may mislead you to think the wine will be sweet but the modern style favors totally dry on the palate. Its texture will be full and soft but a touch of mineral will provide great balance.

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Full-figured and charmingly floral, Viognier is one of the most important white grapes of the northern Rhône where it is used both to produce single varietal wines and as an important blending grape. Look for great New World examples from California, Oregon, Washington and cooler parts of Australia.

DNSDN1106_2012 Item# 135061

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