Lurid ruby. A heady, expressive bouquet evokes fresh raspberry, cherry compote, potpourri, licorice and Asian spices, while a bright mineral flourish builds in the glass. Sweet, palate-staining red fruit liqueur, lavender pastille and spicecake flavors show outstanding depth as well as vivacity thanks to a core of juicy acidity. Plays power off finesse with a deft hand and finishes incredibly long, sappy and pure; velvety tannins emerge very slowly. I wouldn't be at all surprised to see this monumental wine turn out to be the star of the 2015 vintage in the Rhône Valley, south as well as north. (JR)
Similar in style, yet with additional depth and density, the 2015 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes is a sensational effort and one of the gems in the vintage. Kirsch liqueur, blueberries, spice, and incense notes all develop in the glass, and this beauty hits the palate with full-bodied richness, silky, fine tannin impeccable balance and a great finish. As with the traditional cuvée, it's as seamless as they come, and while it's already impossible to resist, it's going to keep for 15+ years.
The 2015 Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes (about 97% Grenache) was entirely destemmed. According to Sophie Armenier, its alcohol level is a whopping 16+%, but it was completely concealed by the wine's intricate spice complexities. Licorice, cola, cinnamon, clove and allspice all interweave with cherries to form a silky web that glides across the palate and into a long, long finish. (JC)
Glistening, bright fruit aroma. Tasty, refined,sleek and wholesome palate: lovely finesse here. (JLL)
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