Bright ruby-red. Far more expressive than the Marie Beurrier, displaying a wild array of candied red fruits, flowers and Asian spices, along with an intense mineral overtone. Silky, sweet and pure on the palate, offering intense raspberry preserve and spicecake flavors and a jolt of lavender pastille. Closes long and sweet, with building spiciness and smooth, harmonious tannins that sneak up late. (JR)
Lastly, the 2011 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Reserve des Célestins will be bottled probably sometime next year, but you can never be too sure. It’s a classic 2011 that’s put-on weight since I tasted it last year and offers terrific notes of lavender, garrigue, kirsch, fruit cake and pepper. Full-bodied, opulent and incredibly sexy on the palate, with a similar, yet even more open, style than the 12, it’s a wine that’s going to drink nicely right out of the gate yet also evolve beautifully. (JD)
The 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve des Celestins (still in barrel) is rich, deep and concentrated. It's also noticeably fresher tasting than the Cuvee Marie Beurrier from the same vintage, with ample cherry fruit and a touch of chocolate on the long, silky finish. (JD)
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