Expected Arrival November 2023
Our tasting impressions
The aromatics of this wine are gorgeous - in a way that only Viognier can do. This Condrieu seems light in its relative youth. But given the balance and depth, we expect it to fill out quite nicely. This is the wine that first attracted us to Pichon and it never disappoints.
About this wine
100% Viognier from vines up to 60 years old in Roche Coulante, Mève and Maladière, on south facing granite slopes and southeast facing granite terraces. Yields are 37 hl/ha.
The grapes are handpicked and whole clusters are crushed with a pneumatic press. Cold fermentation (and malolactic) is spontaneous in barrels. Aged in 30% new oak barrels and 70% one-year old oak barrels.
About the grape
Viognier is a relatively low acid, higher alcohol grape that can provide a full wine with delicate flavors. Usually very floral and often displaying tropical fruit flavors. The wines generally are intended for early consumption when the fruit is freshest, but the Pichons treated us to a tasting of several older vintages of their Condrieu and two out of three were interesting and enjoyable despite the vines being very young when they were produced. Just be prepared for a very different experience featuring musk and oxidative notes.
About the vintageExtreme weather has become commonplace and 2022 in the Norther Rhône was no exception. Searing temperatures and a dearth of rain could have spelled trouble for the vingerons, but some June rain and August humidity were beneficial. The harvest was, on average, about 20 days earlier than 2021. Overall, this is viewed as an excellent vintage.
The Pichon family is a growing force in the Northern Rhône region. Corentin, the eldest of the six children of Isabelle and Christophe, is a young, talented, 3rd generation winemaker. But this is every bit the family business as all of his 5 siblings are involved, along with Corentin's partner and mom and dad.
Based in Chavanay, the Pichons produce wines of elegance and finesse in a variety of appellations spanning more than 20 hectares. Chemical treatment of the mostly Syrah and Viognier vineyards is kept to a bare minimum. In addition to those from their own vines, they also purchase grapes for other wines.
VDLT has been visiting the Pichons for many years and is proud to include them as a foundation of the portfolio.