As good as Hermitage can get, the 2015 Hermitage from Jean-Louis Chave reminds me of a hypothetical mix of the 2010 and 1990 with its incredible purity, finesse, and elegant paired with awesome depth and structure. This heavenly wine exhibits a deep purple color as well as a powerful bouquet of crème de cassis, blackberries, dried violets, graphite, and crushed rocks, with a liquid mineral component that’s just about impossible to find outside of the Bessards lieu-dit in Hermitage. Full-bodied and massively concentrated on the palate, yet with laser-like precision and clarity, it needs a solid decade of cellaring and will keep for 40+ years or more. It’s not as sexy or overt as the Cuvee Cathelin, but is every bit as good. Drink 2028-2068.
I had the opportunity to retaste the wonderful 2015 Hermitage and have taken this opportunity to up my rating of it a couple of points, more in line with how I thought it would turn out from barrel than when I first tasted it from bottle last year. Yes, it's closed up pretty tight, but the potential is clearly enormous, with pungent, peppery aromas accenting espresso, black olive and blackberries. Full-bodied, dense and supremely concentrated, with a tremendously long finish, this is a vintage to put away and forget for at least 5-6 years, maybe a decade.
After tasting several intermediate blends that will ultimately be combined in some proportion to create the 2015 Hermitage, I would not be surprised to see the final result achieve perfection. Although massively ripe and concentrated, there is still a feeling of balance and elegance in the wines that I fully expect to carry over into the final product. As the blending process isn’t complete, Jean-Louis warned that it was too early to say if there would be a Cuvée Cathelin, which is typically an outstanding parcel that, for some reason, doesn’t work in the rest of the blend. Drink Date 2025 - 2040