Our 2021 en primeur offer closed on 9th January 2023. If you have any questions about the campaign, your order, or if you wish to be advised of the 2021 en primeur offer next Autumn, please email sales@yapp.co.uk.


Rhône 2021 Report & En Primeur Offer

Vintage Overview

Make no bones about it, 2021 was a complicated growing season that presented winemakers with multiple challenges and ended an unprecedented run of acclaimed, warm vintages 2015-2020. Late frosts in April 2021 damaged budding vines all the way down to the shores of the Mediterranean and a wet spring and summer meant tireless efforts in vineyards to mitigate mildew. In Condrieu and Côte-Rôtie, harvests were between 50-80% down on previous years although, as one moved further south, the reductions were less dramatic – in fact, Provence & the Languedoc suffered more from the lack of rain in 2022 (just 80mm at Domaine de Trévallon from 1 January to 15 August 2022), which is worth keeping in mind for next year.

In terms of what was eventually harvested in September 2021 – generally, two weeks later than in both 2020 and 2022 – the quality was good. If one critiques the vintage through a two decade perspective, you could call it 'bien classique', 'traditional' even; qualitative comparisons with 2004, 2008 and 2014 would all be reasonable. Legendary Rhône authority, John Livingstone-Learmonth (drinkrhone.com) summarises the Northern Rhône as follows:
"2021 is certainly a vintage with some jolies choses, and a higher level of aromatics than the sun-baked vintages, and potentially good access to the true terroir in the wines."

We've no doubt that Rhône 2021s (and even more so those wines from further South) will be enjoyable bottles to bring from the cellar in due course (and certainly earlier than several of the preceding years), but should you be buying the wines en primeur? In answer to this question, our mantra remains that it only makes sense to buy en primeur in order to secure an allocation of a rare wine or to purchase from a domaine whose wine you enjoy at the best possible price. Given that prices are rising significantly due to dry material, labour and energy costs, plus 2021 was a very small vintage in many appellations, we can not envisage prices of these wines being this low when physically available. Equally, demand pressure on the allocation of rare wines is unrelenting.

Where possible, the wines are annotated with independent testimonials (and listed as such) and/or with team Yapp tasting notes and scores – Jason Yapp (JY) and Tom Ashworth (TA).

Jason & Tom signatures
Jason & Tom


Northern Rhône


Patrick Jasmin
Fourth-generation winemaker, Patrick Jasmin, has the advantage of owning 12 different parcels of vines running across 8 lieu-dits on the Côte Brune and Blonde escarpments, which gives him an enviably broad palette of fruit to work with.
His vines are planted in a field blend of 95% Syrah and 5% Viognier that are hand-harvested and undergo a very traditional fermentation and 3-week cuvaison in cement vats (since 1996 the grapes have been de-stemmed which has improved colour). The parcels are vinified separately prior to blending at the end of December and then aged for up to 2 years in 228-litre and 590-litre oak barrels (with up to 25% being new, originating from France, Russia and the USA). There is no fining and only a light filtration. Approximately 2,000 cases are produced in a typical vintage.
The name 'La Giroflarie' appeared on the label in 2016, to distinguish this principal cuvée from a special cuvée called 'Olea' that Patrick first made in 2015. 'La Giroflarie' is an historic name for the Côte Baudin

Côte-Rôtie 'Giroflarie' 2021 @ £360 per case (of 12 bottles) IB
Côte Rôtie 'Giroflarie' 2021 @ £372 per case (of 6 magnums) IB

"Patrick lost approximately 50% of the crop due to late frosts, so yields were around 20hl/ha for a harvest that started on 20thSeptember 2021 (in 2022, it began on 26th August!). Tasted from a 500-litre barrel. Very dark opaque colour. Violet and Autumnal fruit scents. A little closed at the moment - I suspect this will fill out over time in barrel and bottle, as did Patrick who likened it to 2014. Dark cherry and blackberry flavours. Hints of black pepper. Quite firm tannins and a nice mineral streak. I look forward to revisiting this in bottle next year. 10+ years aging potential." 16.5/20. (JY).

Côte-Rôtie - Domaine Champet


Domaine Champet
Romain and Max Champet run this family estate of 4.5 hectares of vines that lie in a single block in the 'Viallière' lieu-dit, just to the north of Ampuis. Situated exclusively on the clay-based Côte Brune this is a traditional estate producing single-vineyard wine of great typicality.

Côte-Rôtie 2021 @ £168 per case (of 6 bottles) IB
"After losing 30% of the crop due to frost and a further 10% to mildew during a wet Spring/Summer, the brothers were relieved to get a healthy harvest in over five days, 15-20th September. Tasted from an early-release bottling this was mid-weight, quite forward but traditional. Purple robed with violet aromas and fresh red fruit flavours, tight tannins and clean acidity. Very 'correct', emphatically not a blockbuster, but this has real balance and finesse. It might not be plentiful, but it is very good. Should age well for 5 to 10 years. We're shipping it in 6-bottle cases for the first time, which should allow us to distribute the reduced allocation fairly." 17/20. (TA).


Domaine Alain Graillot
Established in 1985, the Graillots' Crozes-Hermitage vineyards now comprise 17 hectares of Syrah vines and 3 of Marsanne and Roussanne, which surround their cellars at Les Chênes Verts (a former pig farm) on the Chassis plateau between Tain l'Hermitage and Pont l'Isère. The estate has been ably run by Alain's sons, Max and Antoine, for the past couple of decades and their red Crozes' is regarded as the archetype of the AOC. Grapes are vinified with their stems for three weeks in stainless steel vats, preceded by a cold maceration without sulphur. The wine is then racked off its lees with up to 50% being aged in small young Burgundy casks before being blended and bottled after 18 months (the sons are bottling a little later than Alain did).

Crozes-Hermitage 2021 @ £240 per case (of 12 bottles) IB - SOLD OUT
Crozes-Hermitage 2021 @ £264 per case (of 6 magnums) IB - SOLD OUT
"It was poignant tasting wines with Max and Antoine Graillot in the year of Alain's death, but he would be proud of their continuing quest for quality and their wine-making skills. The principal Graillot bottling (in terms of the volume produced) has always been approachable when young, as the family dislike over-extraction and it has a large restaurant following. Unlike much of the rest of France, yields here were normal in 2021 (42 hl/ha) which is great news at a time of fine wine shortages. The vineyards avoided frost, but suffered some mildew and black rot, so 20 days of mistral from 8th August were welcome and the harvest ran from 21st – 30th September. 2021 is not a 'big' vintage stylistically, but it is a good one that Max and Antoine are very pleased with. It has the domaine's signature racy red and black fruit bouquet, peppery notes, a fresh acidity and textbook equilibrium. This is a wine that is a fitting testimony to a great, gifted and pioneering vigneron. RIP Alain." 17/20. (JY).


Domaine Clape
Despite their growing fame, you could not meet a more humble family than the Clapes, who farm 5.38 hectares of vines at Cornas, with further parcels classed as Côtes du Rhône and Saint-Péray. Although there have been Clapes at Cornas for at least 250 years, Auguste (1925-2018) was a first generation vigneron, having acquired his vines through marriage to his wife Henriette. His first vintage was in 1949 and he was the first independent vigneron in Cornas to begin domaine-bottling his own wines in the early 1950s. Auguste was joined by his (then 40 year-old) son Pierre in 1989 and grandson Olivier in 2002.
This traditional estate has recently expanded its cellars across the main road in Cornas to create some much needed storage space and a home to some impressive new fermentation tanks.

The Clape wines are predominantly sold on allocation, but if you are new to them, please contact us and we will endeavour to find you some.

Vin des Amis 2021 @ £120 per case (of 6 bottles) IB - SOLD OUT
"A relatively forward-drinking bottling from Syrah vines grown between the village and the river that, as the name suggests, is intended for enjoying with friends in a fairly carefree fashion. Yields were severely depleted by April frosts – 18 hl/ha, as opposed to 30 hl/ha in both 2020 and 2022. Tasted from bottle, having aged in stainless steel and concrete for one year. Quite forward fresh and fruity, less dense and structured than the preceding 4 releases. Well balanced and showing well on its' youthful dark fruit. This should drink well over the next 2 to 3 years. A good effort with distinct Clape character." 15.5/20. (JY).

Côtes du Rhône 2021 @ £150 per case (of 6 bottles) IB - SOLD OUT
Less affected by the frosts than the Vin des Amis, due to location on trellis-trained vines on the lower slopes just outside the village of Saint Péray, this is a mid-weight Syrah with an inviting black fruit and wild herb bouquet. Tasted from bottle. A ripe, rounded palate with a core of dark, briary flavours supported by fine tannins. Decant to drink now or cellar for 2 to 5 years." 16/20. (JY).

Cornas 'Renaissance' 2021 @ £300 per case (of 6 bottles) IB - SOLD OUT
"Launched in 1997 to provide an outlet for fruit from (slightly) less mature rootstock - 'younger' (20 to 50 years old) vines grown in the climats of Geynale, Théziers, Mazardes, Patou and Pied la Vigne which are whole-bunch fermented, vinified separately and blended – the 'Renaissance is intended for earlier drinking, but can still age gracefully for well over a decade. Tasted from several unblended vat samples it displayed a wealth of garrigue berry aromas, notes of tapenade, leather and spice supported by a palate of 'light-heavyweight' fruit and quite firm tannins. A welcome mineral streak, this is a 'traditional' offering of a Clape classic." 16.5/20. (JY).

Cornas 2021 @ £450 per case (of 6 bottles) IB - SOLD OUT
"The Clape family are correctly acclaimed for producing well-balanced wines in challenging vintages, which this wine (tasted from vat) exemplifies. Yields were reduced by late frost, then black rot and mildew, but good fruit was brought in during a harvest that finished on 26th September (almost one month later than the two vintages either side) and just before another hail storm with 100mm rain. Black fruit aromas underpinned by concentrated dark fruit flavours with pitchy undertones and rugged tannins. This requires at least 5 years cellaring, but will be softer and more evolved at 10+ years. Not a 'big' vintage but 'bien classique' all the same." 17/20. (JY).


Domaine Jean-Louis Chave
The Chave wines' long élévage means that they are released later than the majority of their peers. We will release the 2020 Hermitage and Saint-Joseph from Domaine Jean-Louis Chave in March 2023 on an allocation basis. Again, if you are interested in the wines, please contact us.

Hermitage Blanc 2020
"While the 2020 Hermitage Blanc had just been racked, it didn't show the worse for wear and offers beautiful richness, opulence, and baby fat to go with the classic mineral-laced, focused core that Marsanne can provide. Full-bodied, pure, and balanced, it's going to be a dream to taste in its youth but will probably deserve 10 to 15 years of bottle age. 96-98/100." Jeb Dunnuck - jebdunnuck.com

Hermitage Rouge 2020
"As always, I was able to taste the 2020 Hermitage from each lieu-dit, which is unquestionably one of the educational highlights for me every year. While not quite as exotic or sexy as the 2019, it has a level of class that only comes from Hermitage, and I don't say that lightly. Just about off-the-chart purity was present in each sample, the tannin quality is perfect, the wine has a sense of elegance as well as incredible concentration, and it was just a joy to taste. Lovers of classic, age-worthy Hermitage should absolutely not miss this. 98-100." Jeb Dunnuck - jebdunnuck.com

Saint-Joseph Rouge 2020
"Tasted from multiple barrels, the 2020 Saint Joseph is another incredibly classy Saint-Joseph from this estate that has plenty of darker fruits, some obvious minerality, ripe, polished tannins, and outstanding length. It's always a darker fruited, mineral-laced, classic expression of this appellation compared to the riper, sexier Le Clos. 93-95/100." Jeb Dunnuck - jebdunnuck.com

Rhône 2021 En Primeur Offer - The Growers


Southern Rhône

“As to the 2021s, this was a much more challenging vintage that was ravaged by springtime frosts and saw a growing season that lacked sunshine and received abundant rain. However, the wines show good ripeness and more elegant, medium-bodied profiles with solid character. As in any challenging year, it's the most dedicated and hardworking vignerons who produce the best wines, and there will undoubtedly be outstanding wines made in 2021.” Jeb Dunnuck - jebdunnuck.com


Le Vieux Donjon
The estate, now very capably managed by brother and sister François and Claire, comprises 18 hectares of vines (one-third of which are over 100 years old) across six different lieux-dits. They make just one white wine and one red. The red is picked from 17 hectares of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault that are vinified together in concrete and partly aged in concrete (20%) and partly in old oak foudres (80%).

Cháteauneuf-du-Pape 2021 @ £336 per case (of 12 bottles) IB
Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2021 @ £348 per case (of 6 magnums) IB
"Whereas grape picking finished on 16th September 2020, the 2021 harvest did not start until the 14th, completing on the 25thSeptember. Most of the domaine's parcels escaped the frost in Châteauneuf', which hit south and east of the town, but volumes were still down around 30%. Tasted from a VAT sample, this is undeniably a fresher vintage after the previous hot years, with higher acidity, a rich purple colour and raspberry / cherry scents. Mid-weight, beautifully-balanced red and black fruit with fine-grained tannins. Already showing well this should be approachable from release (if decanted) and age well for 10-15+ years." 16.5/20. (TA)

"...clear red robe; the nose is loose, attractive, offers appealing raspberry and red cherry fruit, is softly herbal, thyme present. The palate is en finesse, its juice is pure, crystalline, links well to the nose. It's soft wine, light in the usual context, but very drinkable, the fruit pretty, nicely serenading. The collection of powdered tannins, light and escapist ones, are bonny. 4/6 stars." John Livingstone-Learmonth - drinkrhone.com

"Tasted blind. Quite dominant oak on the nose – pepper and spice with raspberry notes. Whilst the oak is prominent on the palate there is lovely strawberry fruit and concentration to support it. Good, fresh acidity. Closed and introverted, but plenty to look out for here in the future. Drink 2026 – 2036. 16.5+/20." Alistair Cooper MW - JancisRobinson.com

Domaine du Père Caboche
Members of the Boisson family had been both wine-makers and blacksmiths for generations. The family nickname of Caboche derives from the old Provençal word for 'horseshoe nails' and their Vieilles Vignes cuvée is named after Elisabeth Chambellan, a local blacksmith's daughter who married Jean-Louis Boisson in 1772. These days, the 17-hectare estate is ably run by Emily Boisson, with her father Jean-Pierre (former long-serving mayor of Châteauneuf-du-Pape) keeping a watchful eye over proceedings.

Châteauneuf-du-Pape 'Elisabeth Chambellan' 2021 @ £222 per case (of 12 bottles) IB
"The top cuvée from 80-100 year old vines on the famous 'La Crau' plateau. Grapes are de-stemmed, vinified in stainless steel and then matured in concrete and oak tonneau. This vintage is surprisingly approachable from release (if decanted) but even better with 3-5+ years bottle age. Inviting red fruit aromas, hints of wild herbs and spices precede a core of juicy blackcurrant and raspberry flavours underpinned by fondant tannins. It immediately induces thoughts of slow-cooked daubes rich in garlic and olives. Already delightful it has a 5 to 10 year aging potential if you are very patient - but why wait?" 17/20. (TA).

"Framboise, sappy flowers, hints of pepper, and garrigue all emerge from the 2021 Châteauneuf Du Pape Vieilles Vignes Elisabeth Chambellan, a perfumed, elegant, medium to full-bodied beauty with tons to love. Showing the more seamless, elegant, graceful style of this estate, it will drink nicely right out of the gate. 92-94/100." Jeb Dunnuck - jebdunnuck.com

"Tasted blind. Attractive nose, which has plenty of red fruits, strawberry and jammy notes. Plum and soft red fruits on the mid palate, strawberry and sweet spice, a lovely leather note as well. Appealing and opulent style. 16/20 Drink 2027 – 2034. 16/20." Alistair Cooper MW - JancisRobinson.com


Domaine de Trévallon
Bottled as a simple 'Indication Géographique Protégée', this iconic Syrah - Cabernet Sauvignon blend technically lies in Provence, but has strong ties to the Rhône in terms of geography, wine-making and esprit. Low yields (25 to 30 hl/ha) and no chemical intervention give thick-skinned grapes that need 2 to 3 weeks cuvaison. The parcels of grapes are allowed a warm fermentation (using only indigenous yeasts) in small oak foudres where they rest for 18 months before an unfiltered, unfined assemblage and eventual bottling 25 months after the harvest.
Visionary founder Eloi Dürrbach's sudden death in November 2021 was very sad news that rocked the world of wine. His legacy is continued by daughter Ostiane and son Antoine who have worked alongside Eloi for a number of years.

Domaine de Trévallon Rouge 2021 @ £300 per case (of 6 bottles) IB - SOLD OUT
"Unlike much of the rest of viticultural France, this domaine avoided the late frosts and benefitted from much-needed rainfall. In fact, the harvest started on 6th September 2021, only one week later than it did in the (baking) 2022. So, volumes harvested here in 2021 were relatively bountiful. Tasted Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon separately from barrel. Syrah more supple than in previous years, with garrigue and smoky bacon aromas. The Cabernet provides a core of blackberry and dark cherry fruit, offset by a fresh acidity and firm tannins. This should drink well at 3 to 5 years of age (after release) and age for well over a decade thereafter. As Ostiane remarked 'Even petits millésimes can last 30 years at Trévallon.'" 18/20. (TA).

Mas de Daumas Gassac

Mas de Daumas Gassac
'A Lafite in the Languedoc' - Gault & Millau.
In 1970, with little wine knowledge but boundless enthusiasm, Aimé and Véronique Guibert bought an old farmhouse and mill on the Gassac river in the foothills of the Cévennes near Aniane and started investigating the surrounding countryside. In 1972 they began planting Cabernet Sauvignon vines and the first vintage of red Mas de Daumas Gassac was produced in 1978. Today the estate extends to 50 hectares of vines set amongst 5,000 hectares of woodland and Aimé and Véronique's four sons, Samuel, Roman, Gaël and Basile now oversee the running of the estate. Today the red Mas de Daumas Gassac is bottled as an I.G.P. Saint-Guilhem-le-désert cite d'Aniane produced from a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon along with lesser volumes of 23 other grape varieties. It undergoes a long fermentation and is macerated for at least 20 days before being matured in vat and barrels (of 1 to 7 years of age) for 12 to 15 months before blending and bottling.

Mas de Daumas Gassac Rouge 2021 @ £180 per case (of 6 bottles) IB
"A challenging year in the vineyards, with frost and rain taking its toll on yields. Even this far south, the temperature fell to -5 degrees on several occasions during the first two weeks of April 2021. This resulted in a greater proportion of late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon making up the final blend. Sample tasted from VAT and tank assemblage. Alluring garrigue herb and berry scents and a sensuous mid-weight palate with a core of dark cherry and damson fruit, offset by a fresh acidity and well-integrated, fine-grained tannins. This is clearly a fine vintage of a classic wine that deservedly enjoys a fiercely loyal international following. 5-20+ years of aging potential." 17/20. (TA).

Hérault: Domaine de la Grange des Pères & Domaine de Montcalmès
These neighbours of Mas de Daumas Gassac are not released en primeur. We will release the 2020 vintage of Grange des Pères and Montcalmès in March 2023 so, if you are interested in these wines, please let us know.


Rhône 2021 wines en primeur
En primeur wines are offered for purchase now, with delivery in 2023-24.
These Rhône 2021 en primeur wines are offered per case (of either 6 or 12) and 'in bond' ('IB'), exclusive of duty and VAT.
To buy these wines you need to either complete the request form below or contact bianca@yapp.co.uk / telephone 01747 863142.
Payment should be made by debit or credit card at the time of order. We will confirm your order with an invoice and discuss your delivery and storage options.
The en primeur offer closes on Sunday 8th January 2023, but we would advise you to contact us now to secure your preferences.
Terms & Conditions for en primeur purchases
1. A contract will come into existence between Yapp Brothers Ltd ('Yapp') and the Buyer when an invoice is raised and payment is taken by Yapp. Payment will be due immediately when an invoice is raised.
2. Yapp's 'no quibble' consumer guarantee applies to en primeur sales in the sense that the Buyer has the right to change their mind within fourteen days of the creation of this con-tract.
3. Title to wines shall remain with Yapp until all en primeur invoices due from the Buyer are cleared in full. Where any invoice is outstanding for more than 30 days, Yapp re-serves the right to cancel the contract. In the event of accidental shortages, the Buyer will be refunded in full at invoice price.
4. When the wine is shipped to the UK we will confirm delivery or storage and raise any relevant invoices for VAT, duty, storage and delivery charges.
5. Yapp reserves the right to withhold any wines that the Buyer has ordered for non-payment of any invoice.
6. Risk of loss or damage to Goods shall pass to the Buyer when the Goods are physically delivered to or collected by the Buyer (or their agent).
7. If the Buyer is making their own arrangements for the storage, delivery or collection of the wine (as opposed to keeping it at Yapp), the Buyer agrees to notify Yapp of any de-fects in the wines within 30 days of the wine being released and after this period the Buy-er will be deemed to have accepted the wines.

When the physical wine arrives IB in the UK we will contact you to advise you of any additional payments that are due in respect of duty and VAT (if you are withdrawing the wine from bond), storage or delivery charges, including IB transfer charges.
Your options are as follows:
Wine remaining Under Bond
1. If you have your own bonded arrangements at London City Bond ('LCB') you can advise us of the account details for an IB transfer. No further charge.
2. You can store your wine IB with Yapp Brothers. It will be held in the Yapp Brothers' Client Account at LCB. No further charge. You will, however, be charged storage, currently £15.00 per case, per annum, inc VAT (or £7.50 for a half-year).
3. We can arrange for LCB to deliver your wine IB to another bonded warehouse. Such IB transfers are charged at £15 per case up to 2 cases, £5 per case thereafter and must be paid before the transfer request is actioned. You will also need to advise us of account / ware-house details for the transfer.
Delivering & Storing Wine Duty Paid
4. If you would like us to organise delivery of your wine Duty Paid, we will do so under our normal delivery terms. In most cases this will mean no delivery charge.
5. You can store your wine at Yapp Brothers' premises Duty Paid, currently £15.00 per case per annum, inc. VAT (or £7.50 for a half-year).
6. When wine that has been held IB is withdrawn from a bonded warehouse, you will be charged duty and VAT at the prevailing rates on the original cost of the wine.
The current duty rate is £26.78 per case and the VAT rate is 20%. Therefore, the current duty and VAT on a £200 case of wine withdrawn from bond would be £72.14. (N.B. you pay VAT on the cost of the wine including duty).