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Producer of the Month

Focus on our Rhône Producers


2016 vintage in the Rhône Valley: « C'est magique ! », Daniel Brunier

From our most recent of several visits to the region, we believe 2016 to be an extremely good vintage in the northern Rhône and, possibly, the greatest vintage that any of us have ever tasted in the southern Rhône.

The northern Rhône experienced a cloudy, wet spring and flowering was retarded by 2-3 weeks. By the end of July, the weather turned hot and very dry, which continued until some much-needed rains fell during the first week of September. A lovely Indian summer then lasted well into October and producers were able to pick, at leisure, in ideal conditions.

According to Yves Cuilleron, "2016 is a great vintage, with good balancing acidity, alcohol and aromas. It is not fat and will age well. 2016 is like 2010. There was late and gentle maturation and great weather at the end. We could pick at the ideal moment." Our tasting notes are littered with words like aromatic, purity, freshness, juicy and elegance.

The southern Rhône experienced a warm, dry spring and flowering, generally, went very well. Fine weather continued into the summer, with sufficient rainfall to enable ripening to continue unhindered. August enjoyed very hot days and very cool nights - and there lies the secret to a vintage which many describe as better than 1990 or 2010! The balance between gorgeous, generous, ripe seductive fruit and pristine "coolness", freshness and purity is, in our experience, unprecedented.

In Daniel Brunier's opinion "The vintage is characterised by a superb balance of richness and freshness and between high maturity and attractive acidity, which is fairly rare - very rare, even - in the southern Rhône Valley." These are sublimely attractive wines from the very top of the hierarchy down to basic Côtes du Rhône.

As yields in 2017 were severely down, due to climatic conditions (frost, coulure, and a deficit of juice within individual berries) customers might wish to consider the reality of smaller allocations this time next year.

For a list of the wines on offer, please click on the link below. Or email violaine@thormanhunt to request a copy of our Ex Cellar Offer (trade customers only).


rhone valley 2016 vintage - list of wines only.pdf

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