95 Points! As with the Southern Rhône Valley, Bandol appears to have had a banner year in 2016, and the 2016 Bandol from Domaine La Bastide Blanche is straight-up brilliant. Beautiful dark fruits, plums, spice, cedars, and garrigue notes all emerge from this full-bodied effort, which has terrific purity of fruit, a layered, opulent texture, sweet yet present tannins, and a great finish. This is brilliant Bandol! - Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com Learn More
94 Points! Brilliant onion skin. Highly perfumed, mineral-accented aromas of fresh red berries and citrus and pit fruits are complemented by a steadily building floral quality. Silky, focused and energetic on the palate, offering concentrated white peach, melon, strawberry and blood orange flavors that show sharp definition and impressive tension. Expands steadily on the extremely long, focused, mineral-driven finish, which leaves a suave floral note behind. - Josh Raynolds, Vinous Media Learn More
93 Points! One of my favorite 2016s, Gros Noré's 2016 Bandol is a complex, savory offering with at least 15 years of life ahead of it. Dark, plummy fruit picks up notes of mocha, roasted meat and mushrooms on the medium to full-bodied palate. Rich and velvety from start to long, long finish, this is nice, nice stuff, a blend of 80% Mourvèdre with 15% Grenache and 5% Cinsault aged in foudres. - Joe Czerwinski, robertparker.com Learn More
In the 2018 lineup, this could well be the MVP (Most Valuable Pink). These folks have been doing great work for a while but the 2018 just seems to have a little bit more 'pop' and vigorous yet engaging fruit. As is the norm, Mourvedre (50%) is the star of this show with the other half of the wine is split roughly equally between Grenache and Cinsault. Half of the juice is saignee (bled from the red grapes) while the other half is made directly into rosé. Limestone and organic farming are key elements in this story, with this pink as the happy ending. Equal impressions of both berries and yellow stone fruits like peach and apricot, that cool, funky little twist is the Mourvedre speaking its piece, and there's a nice touch of minerality to the finish. Learn More
Last year’s(2017) was something of a best of show for us, and the 2018 is in the same mold with perhaps a little more perceived palate weight and slightly lower acidity. The blend here is 50% Cinsault and 50% Mourvedre, with the latter imparting the wine’s distinctive undercurrent of that unique musky minerality that seems to be proprietary to how Mourvedre performs in this particular terroir. In more rustic versions it can be overwhelming, but here it is another instrument in a virtual symphony of flavors. The effusive nose speaks of red berries, blood oranges and that earthy/mineral thing that is so indicative of the region. In the mouth it shows layers of flavor including, strawberry, orange, earth, mineral, and spice. There’s enough outgoing fleshiness to easily make friends who aren’t necessarily even fans of Bandol but the flavors are unmistakable. If you were as big a fan of the 2017 as we were, you will be quite happy with this one.