The 2019 Chapoutier Ermitage le Meal is a remarkable red wine hailing from the prestigious Hermitage appellation in the Northern Rhone region of France. Crafted from the Syrah grape variety, this wine showcases the expertise and passion of the renowned producer, Chapoutier.
In the glass, this wine displays an enticing inky hue that immediately captivates the senses. The nose is a kaleidoscope of aromas, featuring a harmonious blend of red and black fruits, smoked meats, crushed stone, spice, and burning embers. Each sniff reveals a new layer of complexity, inviting you to explore further.
On the palate, the 2019 Ermitage le Meal impresses with its full-bodied and opulent character. The ripe fruit flavors are beautifully balanced, displaying incredible concentration and a wonderful sense of balance. The tannic structure is robust yet refined, adding depth and longevity to the wine. The finish is nothing short of extraordinary, leaving a lasting impression.
This cuvée is sourced from the middle of Hermitage Hill, where the alluvial and loess soils of the Méal lieu-dit contribute to its unique character. The grapes are meticulously destemmed before undergoing 18 months of aging in a combination of barrels and demi-muids, with 20% new oak.
Wine critics have unanimously praised the 2019 Chapoutier Ermitage le Meal. Jeb Dunnuck awarded it an impressive score of 98 points, describing it as a classic expression of the terroir. Decanter also rated it highly, giving it 97 points and highlighting its powerful and muscular nature. Robert Parker's Wine Advocate similarly awarded it 97+ points, noting its rich tannins and concentrated structure.
James Suckling commended the wine's elegance and freshness, while Wine Spectator praised its layers of complexity and longevity. Vinous also gave it 97 points, applauding its powerful aromatics and fine delineation.
With its exceptional quality and pedigree, the 2019 Chapoutier Ermitage le Meal is a wine that demands attention. It is best enjoyed from 2025 onwards, but for those with the patience, it will continue to evolve and delight for decades to come.