Michelas St Jemms Crozes-Hermitage Blanc Review

I tend to prefer Rhône grapes grown in California to those grown in France, and this was no exception. It’s always a treat to drink bottles from a wine’s ancestral home, though.

Wine review by: Jessyca Frederick

Crozes-Hermitage Blanc
Crozes-Hermitage Blanc: front of bottle with wine in glass

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About this Wine

Wine: 2021 Crozes-Hermitage Blanc
Blend: 75% Marsanne, 25% Roussanne
Region: Cru Crozes-Hermitage, North Côtes du Rhône, Rhône Valley, France
Retail price: $39
I consumed it: March 2023
My source: SomMailier Wine Club

The Back Label

Crozes-Hermitage BlancBack Label

Where to Buy It

Buy it at: SomMailier

Discover More

From this wine club: SomMailier Wine Club

From this winery: Michelas St Jemms

Region: Crozes Hermitage, Rhone, France

Wine color/style: White wine

Grape variety or blend: White blends

Tasting notes: Waxy, Apricot, Pear

Other characteristics: Cru

Crozes-Hermitage Blanc: What I think

My wine tastes learn toward eclectic, within reason. My favorite white wine grapes all come from the Rhône Valley in France — Grenache Blanc, Viognier, Roussanne, Marsanne, Picpoul, and Clairette Blanche. Naturally, if I see a Rhône white blend somewhere, I get excited.

While I love the grapes from the Rhône (the red ones, too), I definitely have more experience with the ones grown in California and I tend to prefer them. When this one arrived from SomMailier — a wine seller whose selections are always top-notch — I was ready to pop the cork. Adventure awaited.

One of the reasons it’s so important to try wines from all over the world is so that you learn the boundaries of what you like and what you don’t. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I didn’t like this wine (it was quite well-made), I just didn’t prefer it to similar wines from California.

I found the wine overly waxy, to the point of being a bit bitter. For some people, that’s a great characteristic, but for me, bitter rarely works. Not all Roussanne or Marsanne is this bitter and typically when the point of blending is to try to temper that a bit.

I also found the wine to be less viscous than most others I’ve tasted. Part of the appeal of the Rhône white grapes is that they have more mouthfeel than you expect from a lighter white wine like Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc. In general, the fruitiness and acidity were subdued, too.

Michelas St Jemms is a family winery in the Northern Rhône Valley who produces wines from the AOC Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Saint-Joseph, and Cornas wine regions. The winery has held a High Environmental Value (HVE) certification since 2014 and is now certified organic (AB) with it’s first organic vintage being 2022 (this wine predates it by one year).

Last updated: May 19, 2023

Notice: I hold no formal wine credentials. I am a wine geek who has consumed 1000+ of bottles from 100+ different wine clubs and 1000s more bottles that didn’t come from those wine clubs. I do not accept payment for wine reviews, and I do not accept payments to influence my opinions. I happily accept free wine (and I buy wine).

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