Maison Nicolas Perrin brings together the scions of two of the great families of the Rhône, Nicolas Jaboulet, formerly of the eponymous winery in Tain, and the Perrin family of Ch. de Beaucastel. This joint venture micro-négociant was created in 2009 with the sole aim of producing top quality Northern Rhône wines. Nicolas is able to source the best fruit and wines from growers and producers that he has formed a long standing relationship with, while the Perrin family bring expertise in winemaking and blending, as well as the use of their cellars. The partnership stems from a long standing friendship, a shared love of gastronomy and a philosophy to create wines that represent the best of their appellation. We were impressed by the precision of the wines which, allied with their modern style and the emphasis on fruit, makes these stunning examples of the vineyards in which they are grown. The Crozes Hermitage Blanc is made solely from Marsanne. It is fresh with hints of honeysuckle and dried herbs and an appealing weight and complexity derived from the 10 months it spends in used barrels. The Crozes Hermitage Rouge is fragrant and juicy with hints of black pepper, fine tannins and balanced acidity. The Côte Rôtie comes from the southern end of the appellation in the Côte Blonde and Coteaux de Tupin where the granite and gneiss soils are lighter in colour and the slopes slightly warmer. This results in a round and velvety Côte Rôtie while still possessing the heady perfume of violets. The Hermitage Blanc is a blend of 70% Marsanne and 30% Roussanne, fermented separately then aged in new French oak for 10 months. This adds complexity and richness to the honeyed and ripe stone fruit aromas, while the quality of the fruit ensures an incredibly long finish. The Ermitage Red uses the alternative spelling for Hermitage and comes from a vineyard right above 'La Chapelle'. Nicolas Perrin only makes a few barrels of this wine each year. While more structured than the Côte Rotie, it is restrained with aromas of red and black fruits, racy acidity and fine firm tannins that will soften with time. Like all of the Nicolas Perrin wines, this Ermitage is surprisingly approachable, yet we can also see the rewards of patience if this wine is left to develop, which it will do so beautifully. We are very happy to be reunited with Nicolas Jaboulet and working with him on his new venture, and hope that you enjoy these wines as much as we do.