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2017 Ermitage Le Reverdy
Country: France France   Region: Rhone Valley    Sub-Region: Northern Rhone
Type: White   Style: Big   Class: AC
Drinking: 2022 - 2037

50% Marsanne, 50% Roussanne

The wine comes from two plots: les Beaumes (limestone and alluvial soil) and le Méal (terraces of round pebbles). South, south-east facing. After pressing, the must is cold settled and then put into barrels (228 litre barrels and 600 litre barrels, 30% new) for the alcoholic fermentation. The malolactic fermentation and the ageing are made in barrels. The wine is aged on fine lees in barrels for 10 to 12 months (depending on the vintage).

Producer: Domaine Ferraton Pere et Fils

Based in the heart of Tain l’Hermitage, Maison Ferraton was founded in 1946 by Jean-Orëns Ferraton, the scion of a family of vignerons with a small holding in Hermitage. His ambitions were cemented with the purchase of vineyards in Saint-Joseph. Expansion of the family business continued at pace under his son Michel, who during the 1960s increased the family holdings in Hermitage and bought vineyards in Crozes-Hermitage. In 1998, family friend Michel Chapoutier became involved in the business and this coincided with growing ambitions for Ferraton. Their own vineyards were converted to organic and biodynamic farming methods and they also introduced a negociant arm to the business, with grapes sourced from partner growers, to extend the house’s offering to include classic appellations from the length of the Rhône Valley.

Ferraton’s winemaker Damien Brisset has an approach to winemaking that is best described as a blend of the traditional and the modern. For fermentation, temperature-controlled cement vats play a major role, with a number of different sizes in use to enable small parcels to be vinified separately, allowing for greater expression of individual terroirs. Unlike stainless steel tanks, cement allows the exchange of air without imparting the pronounced oak flavours and tannins that come from wood. For the red wines, pre-fermentation maceration periods range from two to four weeks, depending on the wine. For the more delicate whites, malolactic fermentation is avoided to preserve freshness in the finished wines. All of the wines are bottled unfined.

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Varietal: Marsanne, Roussanne
  • Marsanne

    Marsanne is a white wine grape, most commonly found in the Northern Rhône region. It is often blended with Roussanne. In Savoie the grape is known as grosse roussette. Outside France it is also grown in Switzerland (where it is known as ermitage blanc or just ermitage), Spain (where it is known as Marsana), Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States.

  • Roussanne

    Roussanne is a white wine grape grown originally in the Rhône wine region in France, where it is often blended with Marsanne. It is the only other white variety, besides Marsanne, allowed in the northern Rhône appellations of Crozes-Hermitage AOC, Hermitage AOC and Saint-Joseph AOC. In the southern Rhône appellation of Châteauneuf-du-Pape AOC it is one of six white grapes allowed, along with Grenache blanc, Piquepoul blanc, Clairette, Bourboulenc and Picardan. The Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation also allows it to be blended into red wines. The grape is also planted in various wine-growing regions of the New World, such as California, Washington, and Australia as well as European regions such as Crete, Tuscany and Spain. The berries are distinguished by their russet color when ripe — roux is French for the reddish brown color russet, and is probably the root for the variety's name. The aroma of Roussanne is often reminiscent of a flowery herbal tea. In warm climates, it produces wines of richness, with flavors of honey and pear, and full body. In cooler climates it is more floral and more delicate, with higher acidity. In many regions, it is a difficult variety to grow, with vulnerability to mildew, poor resistance to drought and wind, late and/or uneven ripening, and irregular yields.

Tasting Notes 2 Average Score: 96/100
Josh Raynolds
May 2020
95/100 2024 2033 Light, brilliant gold. Deeply scented aromas of poached pear, candied fig and honey pick up a hint of dusty minerality as the wine opens up. Impressively concentrated and expansive on the palate, offering building fennel, mineral flourishes and mineral-tinged orchard, pit fruit liqueur flavors. Finishes extremely long and tactile, showing superb clarity and lingering minerality.

James Molesworth
Wine Spectator
Feb 2020
96/100 2020 2030 Warm and lush in feel, featuring creamed melon, peach, apricot and quince notes mixed with honeysuckle, brioche, almond and white ginger nuances through the finish. Shows terrific range and depth, with the cut and drive to match. Marsanne and Roussanne. Best from 2020 through 2030. 250 cases made