/The Northern Rhône Wines of E. Guigal

The Northern Rhône Wines of E. Guigal

Tasting notes, ratings and reviews of the white, rosé and red wines made by famous Rhône producer Etienne Guigal.

To learn more about the producer itself, read E. Guigal winery profile or click on the image below.

Guigal has a pretty extensive range of wines from all over the valley of the Rhone river from North to South. Yet, Guigal is based and is historically a producer of Northern Rhone appellations such as Cote-Rôtie and Condrieu.

Below is an introduction to the wines from the Northern Rhone, often made from the same grape varieties as is the South (Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Vacqueyras, etc.) with Syrah, Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne but with a crispier, more restrained and crisp expression.

2016 E. Guigal Crozes-Hermitage White

Score: 89/100 points


95% Marsanne and 5% Roussanne. 30,000 bottles made annually of this white wine. Retails for about $25-$30 in the US.

Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions

Floral nose, elderflower and lily with touches of mandarine and oak (vanilla and caramel) on a tropical fruit, mango background. The palate is dry and crisp with a salivating and juicy acidity. A burst of pungent pear, citrus and peach flavors. Great balance between a round body and acidic tension. Slightly bitter finish with delicate phenolics. Vibrant and elegant.

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2016 E. Guigal Saint-Joseph Lieu-Dit White

Score: 91+/100 points


95% Marsanne and 5% Roussanne. Single vineyard special site on a hill around the town of Saint-Joseph. This specific lieu-dit, registered on the French cadastre (official maps used by the French administrations) is the one which gives its name to the appellation. The label was designed by Roger PFUND, a Franco-Swiss artist who is a specialist in the design of bank notes. All fermented in oak barrels, 50% new oak barrels and 50% barrels of one wine used barrels.

Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions

Honey and beeswax nose mixed with floral elements of lily as well as spiced up clove and cinnamon. Complex, charming and intriguing to smell at. The flavors of beeswax and floral character also dominate the palate. Extreme complexity of flavors with a long and layered finish. Brioche, caramel, nutmeg, and apricot. Layer after layer coming through on a long finish boasting a massive concentration of fruit.

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2015 E. Guigal Crozes-Hermitage Red

Score: 90/100 points


A 100% Syrah wine aged for 18 months in oak barrels. 450,000 bottles of it are produced annual for a retail price around $30-$35 in the USA.

Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions

Relatively introvert nose, spicy notes of black pepper typical of the slightly reductive expression of Syrah. Fresh vibrant blackberry and blackcurrant aromas, toffee and red apple. Decant a solid half-hour before serving.

The palate is dry and bursting with crisp acidity. Tannins are a little austere and edgy at this stage, suggesting this is a wine to be aged for another couple of years before enjoying.

Juiciness and freshness of the red berry characters, well-integrated oak make for a harmonious wine but a certain sense of French rusticity and French rusticity. A wine of terroir and character.

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2015 E. Guigal Saint-Joseph Vignes de l’Hospices

Score: 94+/100 points


Made from 100% Syrah made from a single vineyard site that used to belong to the local hospital. 20 to 80 years old vines on steep slopes of granite soil. The wine was aged for 30 months in new oak barrels.

Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions

A massive dark and dense color, still featuring purple hues for a nearly-black appearance. The nose smells dark and ripe, blackberry and blackcurrant jam, nutmeg, vanilla, dark coffee and chocolate. This has a deep and serious aromatic profile, featuring both the ripeness and fruit intensity of a fine Australian Shiraz, with the refinement and elegance of a French Northern-Rhone Syrah.

The palate features a world of smooth tannins combined with concentrated acidity for an outstanding overall balance.

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2016 E. Guigal Hermitage White

Score: 91+/100 points


95% Marsanne, 5% Roussanne. Vines average 30 to 90 years. The wine is aged is used oak barrels. About 13,000 bottles of it are made by Guigal annually. Retails around $50 in the US.

Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions

With a shiny gold color, the wine bursts with apricot and stonefruit aromas combined with a heap of buttery aromas. The whole smells like a rich lemon tart sprinkled with cinnamon and clove. This is a dry wine with a juicy acidity and solid minerality. A large rounded and comforting body makes for a rich balance enjoyably leading to a long finish. Layers of fresh fruit, citrus and white peach. Caramel, dark French-coffee, sweet spices. Immense length. A wine you can still taste more than two minutes after tasting which is rare.

A lot goes on in this crisp, pungent and super-complex punchy white. Finesse and elegance combined to the power of ripe fruit character.

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2014 E. Guigal Hermitage Red

Score: 93+/100 points


100% Syrah made from vines averaging 30 years of age on limestone clay and silt soil and sandy gravel. The wine was aged for 36 months (3 years indeed which is a very long time!) in oak barrels (50% new). Retails around $70 in the US or £55 pounds in the UK.

Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions

With a decently dark red color for a Syrah, this Hermitage smells ripe with notes of blackberry and dark cherry. Dark coffee and chocolate, nutmeg and spicy clove complete a large spectrum of aromas to the nose.

The palate is very convincing, large and round-bodied filling your mouth with a dense and refined velvety structure. The acidity is pungent, bringing up the vibrancy of the cherry fruit characters. Extremely complex and layered tasting experience, yet it is all delivered with definition and a sense of control.

Other Review of Many of Guigal Wines

2012 E. Guigal Château d’Ampuis Côte-Rôtie, Rhône, France

2010 E. Guigal Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France

2012 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône Rouge, France

2012 E. Guigal Côte-Rôtie Brune et Blonde, Rhone

2014 E. Guigal Condrieu, Rhone, France

2015 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône Rosé, France

2014 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône Blanc, France