Founded in 1781, Vidal-Fleury not only is the Rhône’s oldest continuing grower/négociant firm, but it also secured an international following very quickly. Thomas Jefferson’s visit in 1787 was its first contact with the United States; he called the wines “ justly celebrated”.
La Chatillone is a small parcel on the northern edge of the Côte Blonde. Exposure here is to the east creating a cooler microclimate. Terraces here are less rocky than the rest of the vineyard with soils made up of gneiss, silica and rich clay.
Grapes are hand harvested and transported to the winery in small crates. Fermentation occurs with indigenous yeasts in temperature controlled tanks with the maceration period lasting approximately 3 weeks with frequent pumping over. The wine is aged on its lees for a total of 4 years in a combination of new and used oak barrels as well as large oak casks. The finished wine is very lightly filtered (cross flow) and not fined. The wines rest in bottle for a minimum of 6 months prior to release.
A step up over the ’09, the 2010 Cote Rotie Cote Blonde La Chatillonne (88% Syrah and 12% Viognier) gives up a fabulous bouquet of violets, rose petal, blackberry jam, game and hints of wild herbs that continues to develop in the glass. Medium to full-bodied, elegant and finesse driven on the palate, with a seamless texture, this gorgeous 2010 can be consumed now (preferably with a decant), or cellared for a decade or more.
Owned by the Guigal team, with the wines made by Guy Sarton-de-Joncquey, Vidal Fleury produces a wealth of high quality releases, most of which represent fantastic values. ~94WA
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