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2003 Paul Jaboulet Aîné ‘La Chapelle’ Hermitage

  • Producer
    Paul Jaboulet Aîné
  • Vintage
  • Grape Variety
  • Region
  • Sub Region
  • Size

Maison Paul Jaboulet Aîné was established in 1834 when Antoine Jaboulet set up his business in Tain l’Hermitage with the aim of producing great wines. He saw his future profession as limited to cultivating the vineyards and maintaining the quality of the land. It was with this mindset that he quickly acquired his first vineyards on the Hermitage slopes and the Crozes Hermitage plains. The six generations who followed him, including sons Paul and Henry and later, the celebrated Gerard, adopted an identical approach.

The jewel in the Jaboulet collection has always been the legendary ‘La Chapelle’ Hermitage, a great red wine made purely from Syrah, which owes its name to the famous little Sainte Christophe chapel which overlooks the Hermitage vineyards. ‘La Chapelle’ which has been solely owned by Paul Jaboulet Aîné since 1919 is made by blending grapes from the best terroirs in the appellation (Meal, les Bessards, les Rocoules, etc.). The 1961 ‘La Chapelle’ was ranked amongst the 12 greatest wines of the 20th century by the Wine Spectator.

The name of Hermitage La Chapelle is linked to the little chapel of Saint-Christophe overlooking the terraced vineyards along the Rhône. Maison Paul Jaboulet Aîné has been the sole owner since 1919.
The diversity of “terroirs” on these lands gives the wine an identity of its own, thanks to the blending of grapes from different plots.

The Syrah vines are planted in rich and varied soils with very diverse terroirs (les Bessards, les Greffieux, le Méal and les Rocoules).
It is the richness of these different terroirs that provides our Hermitage La Chapelle with its complexity.

Tasting Notes

96+ Points Robert Parker Wine Advocate
The 2003 Hermitage la Chapelle is a stunner! From a scorching-hot year that may never be repeated, this behemoth took two months to ferment dry and hit 14.1% natural alcohol. In addition, while in a big year they can produce 80,000 to 90,000 bottles (or more in the case of the 2000), they only made 50,000 bottles of the ’03. Locked and loaded with notions of plums, Asian spice, olive tapenade and sweet cassis, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, a massive mid-palate and layers of sweet tannin. This blockbuster is guaranteed to put a smile on your face and will drink beautifully for another 15-20 years.

96 Points Jeb Dunnuck
The 2003 Hermitage La Chapelle is certainly the greatest vintage after the magical 1990. From a record-setting vintage (this vintage took two months to ferment dry and hit 14.1% alcohol), it has mature notes of spiced plums, creme de cassis, black olives, and spice as well as full-bodied richness and depth on the palate. With sweet tannins, beautiful mid-palate depth, and a blockbuster finish, it’s a tour de force in Hermitage to enjoy over the coming two decades.

2003 Paul Jaboulet Aîné ‘La Chapelle’ Hermitage