1997 Michel Ogier “La Belle Helene” Côte-Rôtie

The ’97 is definitely more overt in its oakiness than the ’95 BH or the ’97 “regular”, but just a bit. Compared to the ’95 BH, it’s bigger and rounder, more Californian in structure. But no California syrah ever tasted like this! The ’97 BH has those elusive elements, class and depth, a wash of flavor. If there’s any criticism, it’s that the structure might lean a bit toward fatness; not the soupy character one finds in, say, the ’85 Mouline, but a wee bit of cellulite jiggle at the ass end. Give it lots of air to let the fruit push past the wood.

SY (1/01)