Pre-arrival

Christophe Pichon Condrieu Caresse 2017

2017
Viognier
Christophe Pichon

Member Price: $70.00

Guest Price: $82.35

 *****Pre-Arrival offering. Wines are expected to arrive in 60-90 days.*****

 

Our tasting impressions

We weren’t able to get this wine for a couple of years. Glad it’s back! I’m not usually a fan of special cuvées. This is an exception. Bigger, richer and oakier than their regular Condrieu but Corentin keeps everything in check. Like so many of Pichon’s 2017’s, this is the best I’ve ever tasted. The young winemaker’s skill and confidence are growing and it’s evident. Viognier is best enjoyed young but I intend to cellar a few for several years. Magnifique!

 

About this wine

100% Viognier from a single, exceptional plot of vines averaging 45 years on south-facing granite slopes. Yields are 35 hl/ha. Half is aged in new oak barrels and half in 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 vintage

2017 marked a third consecutive excellent vintage in the Northern Rhône. Temperatures, generally, were high and over-ripeness was possible. A major drop in temperatures in April effected “fruit set” and led to lower yields. Viognier was prone to be too rich and tropical. But the best, like Corentin Pichon achieved fine balance.

 

On your table

This wine has ample body so look for a fish like Dover Sole that has dense meat. Add a creamy sauce with plenty of lemon or mustard for an acid punch. The aromatics and complex flavors of Condrieu are muted at refrigerator temperature. Too warm and they will seem flabby and alcoholic, so serve at 48-50°F. 

Christophe Pichon

The Pichon family is a growing force in the Northern Rhône region. Christophe and Isabelle continue to steer the 18 hectare Domaine, but their sons, the third generation - Corentin, the principal winemaker and Alexis, who focuses on sales and marketing - are making their mark.


Based in Chavanay, the Pichons produce wines of elegance and finesse in a variety of appellations. Chemical treatment of the mostly Syrah and Viognier vineyards is kept to a bare minimum.

 

The joy of this family of eight is evident in their wines. VDLT has been visiting the Pichons for many years and is proud to include them as a foundation of the portfolio.  Last year, Alexis visited New York for the first time for a VDLT tasting event. We enjoyed introducing him to some of NYC’s finest, as well as bringing him to tour one of the best wineries on Long Island.

 

VDLT is the only North American source for current vintages of Pichon’s wines.