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Tasting notes: Les Chaillées de l’Enfer is a wine « with incredible charm ». It blends fruit (apricot, pear, white peaches) with citrus fruits, waxy notes and other more floral (white flowers, rose, violets), more vegetal (mint, thyme, etc.) and spicy (ginger, saffron) notes. A tight Condrieu with saline and iodine tones, elegant, with a lovely freshness, this is a white of great purity with a perfect balance that could be called closed and tense.
From the mid-slope portion of the lieu-dit of La Caille, from vines planted in the 1960s and '70s, the 2019 Condrieu les Chaillees de l'Enfer ratchets up the intensity over the entry-level Les Terrasses de l'Enfer. Rich, ripe notes of melon and apricot are joined by hints of spring flowers and toasted grain (this cuvée spends a year in a mix of foudre and barrique, 20% new). It's medium to full-bodied, fleshy and opulent, balanced by a long, spicy finish. Joe Czerwinski
Domaine Georges Vernay is one of the oldest and most famous estates in Condrieu. Georges highly contributed to the reintroduction of Viognier on the hillsides of the region when in 1960’s the appellation used to cover only 8 hectares.
Today the domaine is managed by Georges’ daughter Christine and her husband Paul. The vineyard covers 8 hectares in Condrieu, 2.5 hectares in Côte-Rôtie and 1.5 hectares in Saint-Joseph and the rest being located in IGP Collines Rhôdaniennes and Côtes-du-Rhône. Their Condrieu are made from vineyards in the heart of the appellation and all express the purest; most restrained expression of the Viognier grape.
For over 20 years, Christine Vernay has used organic farming methods. Considering herself as the custodian of a land for which she is responsible for caring, she has long been committed to organic farming, long before it was fashionable or urgent to do so. She has now successfully demonstrated that, while it is difficult to work the steeply sloping vineyards using organic farming, it is not impossible.
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