"Grown on the western-facing portion of the Hermitage hill, on the same underlying granite as les Bessards, the 2016 Crozes Hermitage les Varonniers makes a mockery of most Crozes-Hermitages, coming across more like Hermitage itself. Aged in a mix of barriques and demi-muids, it frames cassis fruit with hints of pencil shavings and crushed stone. Full-bodied and concentrated, it shows granite-like reserve in its powerful expression and long, dusty finish."
94 points, Wine Advocate (November 2018)
"Deep violet. An expansive, highly perfumed bouquet evokes ripe cherry and boysenberry, and suave mocha and floral accents build in the glass. Broad and weighty but lively as well, offering sweet dark fruit, spicecake and violet pastille flavors supported by a spine of smoky minerality. Rounded tannins build steadily on the finish, which displays excellent clarity and spice-tinged persistence."
(92-94) points, Vinous (June 2018)
"On another level, the inky colored 2016 Crozes-Ermitage Les Varonniers comes from the granite hillside just beside Hermitage hill and is more Hermitage than Crozes. It has a huge nose of currants, smoked earth, graphite, pepper, and cured meats. This carries to a rich, powerful Crozes that has a real sense of minerality, beautiful mid-palate depth, ripe, present tannins, and a great, great finish. Aged 18 months in 20% new French oak (a mix of Burgundy barrels and demi-muids), it has two decades or more of longevity ahead of it."
96 points, jebdunnuck.com (December 2018)
"Barrel sample. West-facing vines. Yields of 24 hl/ha. Deep crimson. Tannins, we’re told, are less aggressive than in 2015. Bone dry but elegant. And no shortage of tannins actually! Hold for quite a while. Very fresh and dry indeed. Austere."
16.5+ points, jancisrobinson.com (June 2017)
M. Chapoutier is a renowned producer in the northern Rhône valley, producing a diverse array of benchmark wines from the region’s most prestigious appellations. The Chapoutier family has roots in the region dating from 1808; however it is under the current leadership of winemaker Michel Chapoutier that quality at the estate has soared. Since taking over the family firm, Michel Chapoutier has overseen the dramatic transformation of the estate’s vineyards to biodynamic practices. Winemaking philosophy has also changed significantly with a more sensitive oak regime now in place to allow the wine’s character to show through. The wines are also bottled unfined and unfiltered. M.Chapoutier is famous both for the "téte de cuvées" wines from old vine vineyards including La Mordorée and Hermitage La Pavillon and its range of rare Sélections Parcellaires; celebrated single-vineyard wines from the Northern Rhone’s most site, the Hill of Hermitage.