Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Jasper Hill/Chapoutier La Pleiade

La Pleiade is a mysterious wine, maybe as mysterious as the name or label. Yet it deserves much more acclaim. The name refers to the seven stars Pleiades cluster, also depicted on the label, but it also stands for a group of French Renaissance poets. The renaissance might be referring to a new take on Shiraz: full bodied, yet elegant at the same time. The vineyard is a joint venture between Ron Laughton of Jasper Hill fame, and Michel Chapoutier from the Northern Rhone.

The 2006 La Pleiade is a deep purple coloured wine, with an appealing set of fruit characteristics. There is red and black cherry and blackberry, and the fruit tastes fresh (after 9 years!). This is a well balanced wine with a satisfying mouthfeel. The wine delivers a velvety coating of the mouth, with a beautiful and pure fruit core and dry tannins, which take a back seat. This wine has weight, but it is not heavy, if this makes sense. Actually, it is a hard wine to describe. It is perfect for a cold winter night, and you look forward to a second or third glass. The wine drinks very well now and will do so for another 5+ years.

Score: 95/+++

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello Thomas,
I was introduced to the 2010 vintage of La Pleiade several years ago at the Heathcote wine show. I havent had the pleasure of the 2006.
The 2010 vintage is the most un Heathcote wine i have tasted in that region. Yes at +$70/bottle it aint cheap......nothing of quality is.
Much lighter and intriguing than the typical Heathcote shiraz....almost cerebral which you seem to be suggesting of the 2006.

What limited information i could find suggests that the fruit is lightly pressed ! Pity information is so scarce.
Perhaps next time you are talking to Mr. Chapoutier you could mention that to him?

Merci beaucoup