Andrew Guard

2021 Côte-Rôtie, François et Fils

A seductive, perfumed bouquet evokes dark red and dark berry fruits, soft incense and sous bois with mineral and spice lift - we are definitely in the Cote Brune here... Juicy in the mouth and appealingly sweet and concentrated it is very vibrant and well balanced on the palate, showing intense dark cherry liqueur and spice flavours and a hint of jellied fruit. The finish is impressively long, vibrant, mineral-driven. This is superb, artisanal Cote Brune that will keep and keep

I am happy to say I was finally satiated this year with a superb visit with Yoann François at Domaine François et Fils, located in Mornas which is up in the hills behind Ampuis, this is an estate on the Côte Brune.

I had heard great things about this estate and had purchased a bottle of their 2019 Côte-Rôtie at a shop in Saumur that I go to each year as the selection by the owner is second to none. To my delight, when I opened it whilst in Sancerre I was shocked by how much I liked it, this was exactly what I was looking for! a masterful expression of Syrah's carnal delights; billowing perfume, silken texture, deep concentration and lovely length and most of all the finesse that only Côte-Rôtie can bring.

This is a jewel of an estate with just 4 hectares of vines, planted in the 80's all in great terroir. Yoann and his brother Erwan are the current custodians and the future is sure, this is estate is already a star but one that is quite surely destined for greatness.