Viscous in feel, featuring citrus and hazelnut oil notes that weave around a core of white peach, verbena, creamed Cavaillon melon and glazed pear flavors. Long and honeyed through the finish, with a thread of bitter almond offsetting the opulence.Hermitage is one of France’s most spectacular and famous appellations, but Hermitage Blanc is one of the least-known yet most intriguing wines of the Rhône Valley. Composed primarily of Marsanne (95%) and small amounts of Roussanne (5%), it is relatively rare, accounting for only a small percentage of the production of the 309 acre Hermitage AOC.
The vines are between 30-90 years of age, with the various blocks planted on granite-limestone, clay loam and sandy gravel topsoils on the famous granite mother rock. Yields are under 2.3 tons per acre.
The wine evolves in a remarkable fashion, tasting vibrant and rich just after bottling, developing a softer, rounder character after a few years, and returning with renewed freshness and much greater complexity after 10 or 15 years in the cellar. Guigal’s small production of Hermitage Blanc is made traditionally, with two or more years of cellar aging before bottling.