Archive for the ‘Châteauneuf-du-Pape’ category

Domaine des Sénéchaux Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2000

August 4, 2008

I had no intention to write about joint ventures again but with the ever globalising dynamics of modern wine business it’s hard not to do so. Take for example this iconic Châteauneuf du Pape producer. Acquired in 2006 by Jean-Michel Cazes, it adds to a prestigious portfolio including Château Lynch-Bages, Ormez de Pez, L’Ostal Cazes and Tapanappa, the latter a joint venture with our own icon Brian Croser. Time will tell what direction the wines will take stylistically,  this one is made under auspices of previous owner Pascal Roux. Deep ruby in colour the nose still shows remarkable fresh primary fruits as blackberry, raspberry and plum while notes of spice, earth, garrigue and leather add an intriguing complexity. Time has smoothed the tannins, lending the wine an appealing elegance only found in Châteauneuf with sufficient bottle-age, without loosing its finely woven structure that guides the core of sweet fruit towards a long and satisfying finish. Maybe a bit old fashioned but certainly well-made. Bravo! 92 points.

Source: Swanbourne Cellars  Price: $60  Drink: Now-2010


Chateau Mont-Redon Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2004

June 27, 2007

img_3017.jpgThe historic appellation of Châteauneuf-du-Pape is one of France’s most diverse regions with no less than 13 varieties permitted under the excisting regulations. As the largest single-vineyard estate in the region Château Mont-Redon is one of the few producers who cultivates them all although in the red cuvee mainly Grenache, Shiraz and Mourvèrdre are used while Cinsault, Muscardin, Counoise and Vaccarese only play a supporting role. The Mourvèdre is grown on the more sheltered sandy soils of the estate where it can ripen fully while the Grenache and Shiraz are planted on the poor alpine diluvium soils that are characterized by the classic galets roulés over iron-rich clay subsoil. These soils lend enough water and heath-rediation to the grapes to develop the necessary structure, backbone and concentration of flavour to match the accumulation of sugar and therefore alcohol degrees. This intense grenat coloured wine shows prunes, dried black berries, leather and gamey characters on the nose. The palate opens soft, supple and smooth with sweeter Grenache fruit dominant while the mid-palate and finish show fresh acidity and minerality – a hallmark of the 2004 vintage – to provide a perfect balance to the weight and tannins of the Shiraz and Mourvedre. This is a wine from a classic vintage that should keep for at least 5 years in the cellar. 91 points.

Source: Vintage & Vine/Liquid Library  Price: $72  Drink: Now-2012