91-93+/100 Punkte Robert Parker, Aug 2018 The 2017 Chablis 1er Cru Montée de Tonnerre is excellent, offering up an already complex bouquet of lemon oil, confit citrus, dried white flowers, honeycomb and fresh croissant. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, powerful and satiny, with lovely depth at the core and an impressive sense of completeness. It promises to be one of the highlights of Samuel Billaud's 2017 collection.
91-93/100 Punkte Robert Parker, Aug 2018 The 2017 Chablis 1er Cru Mont de Milieu is very promising, wafting from the glass with notes of citrus blossom and pastry cream. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, with a blocky, tight-knit core and tangy balancing acids. It's one of the more structurally reserved wines in the range, and I suspect it will need some time in bottle too.
92-94/100 Punkte Vinous, Aug 2018 The 2017 Chablis Mont de Milieu comes from three parcels of 35, 60 and 80-year old vines in different parts of the vineyard that crop at just 25hl/ha. It has a classic Chablis bouquet with a potent sea influence, oyster shells and cockles, and a whiff of kelp. The palate is beautifully balanced with a crisp line of acidity, very harmonious and elegant, the 20% barrel maturation just lending a little more weight to the finish. Superb.
93/100 Punkte Robert Paker August 31, 2018 A blend of 60% Clairette, 20% Grenache Blanc and 10% each Bourboulenc and Roussanne, the 2017 Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc Cuvee Reservee is the best example of this cuvée I can recall. It's medium to full-bodied, with a lush, creamy mouthfeel and ripe flavors of melon and citrus balanced by hints of anise and lime zest. It finishes with freshness, vibrancy and brightness. I've been deliberately conservative with the aging estimate, as I like wines like this young, but it's capable of aging for a decade or more.
93/100 Punkte Vinous, October 2018 Pale green-tinged yellow. Heady, mineral-laced pear and melon aromas show outstanding clarity and a sexy floral nuance. Sappy and sharply focused on the palate, offering vibrant orchard fruit and honeydew flavors that are braced and lifted by a bitter citrus pith element. The floral note comes back strong on the finish, which lingers with outstanding, mineral-driven tenacity.
89/100 Punkte Robert Parker August 31, 2018 The medium-pink 2017 Cotes du Rhone Rose La Dame Rousse is another top example of this cuvée. It offers raspberry, pear and melon flavors, a plump, medium-bodied mouthfeel and a long, citrusy finish. Crisp and clean, it should be consumed over the next several months.
93/100 Punkte Robert Parker June 2018 Bold, intense and flavorful, the 2017 Tavel La Reine des Bois continues to set the standard for the appellation. It's a rich, full-bodied rosé, with lush, mouth-filling flavors of cherries, raspberries and white chocolate, underscored by lime zest and refreshing brine notes. The price is creeping up, but it remains a benchmark in terms of quality.
93/100 Punkte Vinous August 2018 Brilliant orange-pink. Displays heady, mineral-accented raspberry, cherry and blood orange scents, with a suave floral accent that builds in the glass. Sappy and concentrated yet energetic as well, offering palate-staining red fruit, citrus zest and lavender pastille flavors and a hint of fennel. Shows real power and red fruit-driven character on the finish, which hangs on with impressive tenacity. I'd look at this rich, weighty Tavel more as a light red wine than a pink wine and serve it accordingly, with full-flavored, strongly seasoned, even earthy foods, perhaps even alongside grilled or braised red meat dishes.
91-93/100 Punkte Robert Parker August 2017 The 2016 Chablis 1er Cru Mont de Milieu comes from three different types of vineyards at different altitudes and vine age that are blended together in the vineyard. It has a slightly austere bouquet with fine delineation: granite and flint scents. The palate is well balanced with crisp acidity and is very precise and harmonious, with hints of quince and apricot toward the pretty finish. This is another very elegant wine from Samuel Billaud.
91-93/100 Punkte Robert Parker August 2017 The 2016 Chablis 1Er Cru Vaillons Vieilles Vignes comes from 70-year-old vines raised only in stainless steel. I like the aromatics here#this has a sense of purpose with vivid scents of orange zest and a touch of lychee. The palate is tensile right from the start thanks to that killer line of acidity. There is great depth here and the harmonious finish feels assured and elegant. Great potential and for me this is a serious step up from the Chablis Village and certainly worth the few extra dollars.
93+/100 Punkte Robert Parker August 31, 2018 The 2016 Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos offers up a classy bouquet of preserved lemon, subtle peach, honeycomb, fresh croissants and white flowers. On the palate, it's full-bodied, rich and layered, with considerable power and chewy extract, displaying excellent depth and energy. It's a serious wine, but it will be quite open-knit and accessible by the standards of Les Clos.
93/100 Punkte Robert Parker August 31, 2018 A reserved bouquet of lemon oil, dried white flowers and beeswax introduces the 2016 Chablis Grand Cru Vaudésir, a dense, full-bodied and concentrated wine that's quite firm and structured on the palate, showing considerable promise. It hails from two parcels at either end of this climat.
98/100 Punkte Robert Parker Oktober 2018 The 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape La Reine des Bois is a monumental effort. Packed and dense, full-bodied and richly tannic, it's completely absorbed the 30% oak. It's 80% Grenache, older vines from the lieux-dits of La Crau and La Nerthe. Blueberries, licorice and Mexican chocolate are carried on a velvety mouthfeel through an indelibly long finish. It's a tour de force, so young, but so tempting. Tasted three times, with consistent notes.
96/100 Punkte Vinous April 2018 Deep vivid ruby. A highly perfumed bouquet displays ripe red and blue fruit preserve, incense, garrigue and cola aromas complicated by a vibrant mineral quality that gains strength as the wine opens up. Sweet, seamless and broad in the mouth, offering impressively concentrated Chambord, boysenberry, floral pastille and spicecake flavors that show superb clarity and lift. The blue fruit and floral notes power a strikingly long, spicy finish that's shaped by rounded, even tannins. This wine's marriage of heft to finesse is really impressive.
94/100 Punkte Robert Parker October 2018 Potent and intense, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape La Dame Voyageuse is a rich, dramatic bottling, the best I've tasted under this label. It's approachable now, but smart money is on it aging well for at least a decade. It's full-bodied and supple, with concentrated blueberry, mulberry and plum fruit, hints of licorice, cola and braised meat and just a dusting of baking spices (10% of the blend aged in oak). Tasted three times, with consistent notes.