Robert Parker 98
“The 2015 Hermitage La Chapelle is one of the estate’s finest recent efforts. It’s packed with firm tannins and will need to be lost in the cellar for a decade, but it will reward those with patience. Richly concentrated and full-bodied, it hits all the expected notes-cassis, black olive, smoke, crushed stone, pencil shavings and espresso-then finishes long, with an aristocratic sense of reserve and austerity. Winemaker Jacques Devernois compares it to a woman’s black dress, meaning it speaks of elegance and class.”
Anticipated maturity: 2027-2050
(20% new oak): Dark purple. Explosive, mineral-accented scents of ripe dark berries, licorice, incense, vanilla and exotic spices, with a smoky nuance in the background. Deeply concentrated yet strikingly lively and precise on the palate, offering intense, finely detailed black and blue fruit, bitter cherry and floral pastille flavors that are complemented by hints of olive, allspice and star anise. Offers an uncanny blend of richness and finesse, with no rough edges. Shows remarkable energy and thrust on the endless finish which features supple tannins that add shape and gentle grip. This is one of the finest examples of young La Chapelle that I have ever tasted from barrel, and that includes the legendary 1989, 1990 and 1991 trio. If you love northern Rhône wines this one really shouldn’t be missed.
Jeb Dunnuck 100
Lastly, and a legendary wine in the making, the 2015 Hermitage La Chapelle is reminiscent of the 1990 with its full-bodied, opulently, sexy, yet concentrated style. Offering sensational notes of blackcurrants, smoked herbs, beef blood, and chocolate, it’s a huge yet elegant wine that has masses of sweet tannin, incredible purity and finesse, and a killer finish. It’s the finest wine from this estate in close to 30 years. Hats off to Caroline Frey and Jacques Desvernois!
Anticipated maturity: 2026-2066