TOP TIP: Guigal La Doriane 2015
Marcel and Philippe Guigal have been arguably the most consistently high quality producers across the board in the Rhone for some years now. Whilst most famous for their reds, including the ever-magnificent value Cotes du Rhone, their Condrieu ‘La Doriane’ is a truly wonderful example of the style. Condrieu is the pinnacle of Viognier from anywhere in the world, the appellation delivers a magical two-stage wine which flatters and impresses in youth but beguiles and fascinates with 8-10 years or more in the bottle…
With a total production of just under 1200 cases in 2015, this stunner is a blend of 5 leading Condrieu vineyards, all of which are less than 1ha in size: 25% from Colombier, 25% from La Côte Chatillon, 25% from Volan, 12.5% from Coteau de Chéry and 12.5% from Coteau de Vernon. The wine is fermented and aged for 12 months in all new oak, giving it depth, richness and ageability. The wine always seems rich and very fruity when young, transforming in 3-4 years into a seamlessly complex, aromatic and vibrant wine. La Doriane certainly contradicts the occasional view that Condrieu does not age well.
We’ve long been huge fans of the wine and were impatient to taste it when we visited the Domaine a few weeks ago. Given the hype around the 2015 vintage in Northern Rhone our expectations were high but we were not disappointed: the wine is beautifully balanced, fresh, graceful and has a genuine depth… Put simply, it is an outstanding La Doriane not to be missed!