2005 Francois Villard Mairlant St Joseph
"Tight and muscular, with coffee, braised fig and grilled meat notes up front, while the core of currant paste and tobacco hangs back for now. The tangy finish has lots of grip, with lingering mesquite and iron notes. Best from 2009 through 2014. 775 cases made." -92 points Wine Spectator
"The St. Joseph appellation was cultivated by the Carmelite Monks in the 13th century. This appellation does not have a radical following, because it covers a vast area stretching from Condrieu to Cornas. The best vineyards are planted on granite. There is no village of St Joseph that ties into the designation. Because the terrain is so diverse and there are many producers, the quality can vary immensely, making it important to taste the wines and know which producer is doing the work in the vineyards."
"Francois' 'Mairlant' cuvee is from vineyards planted on granite and his yields are tiny, giving the wines tremendous muscle and minerality. The 2005 Mairlant offers aromas of marinated and grilled meats, fig compote and dry tobacco leafs. On the palate, the wine is broad, enveloping, deep and spicy showing hints of black pepper and black licorice. This is a wine with firm, well integrated tannins and a fine acidic backbone."
This scored 88 points by Josh Raynolds of the International Wine Cellar and 87 points from Robert Parker. See the notes on Cellar Tracker here: http://www.cellartracker.com//wine.asp?iWine=464771