Plummy and rich, the 2016 Gigondas is full-bodied and velvety, everything you might expect from this benchmark estate. Dense and powerful, my only reservation is its slightly chocolaty, fudge-like notes and elevated alcohol (15.5% alcohol). Like always, it starts off as a blend of 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre in the vineyard, although exact proportions can vary from year to year, depending on yields among the different varieties.
Score: 93 points -- Joe Czerwinski, Robertparker.com, Aug 2019
Christophe Ay and his sister Anne-Sophie represent the seventh generation at this venerable family-run estate. Owners of 19 hectares in Gigondas, they produce only Gigondas, and only a single cuvée each year. Plantings are 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, all on the plain in front of the village, not on any of the high-elevation sites in the Dentelles. The grapes are all destemmed, then fermented in vats using indigenous yeasts before élevage in old foudres for at least two years. Christophe points out that the mildew attack in May-June 2018 left small yields of only 15-16 hectoliters per hectare, but the resulting wines have good acidity and long aging potential. He compares it to 2015 or 2007 (both excellent vintages at this address).