Inky ruby. Smoky raspberry and creme de cassis aromas, with a surreal array of spice, floral and mineral qualities building in the glass. Palate-saturating red berry preserve flavors show a liqueur-like sweetness and viscosity but also remarkable mineral lift, finishing broad, sappy and with amazing persistence. One of my favorite wines of the vintage. 'This is a selection; it's not from a particular plot,' Thierry Usseglio told me. (JR)
Formidably dense and structured, with lots of fig paste and currant confiture, layered with espresso, bittersweet cocoa, bramble and hoisin sauce notes. The long, tarry finish really pounds it out authoritatively, with fruit and minerality to burn. Has the power of the previous vintages, but with far better definition. Best from 2009 through 2030. (JM)
Lastly, the 2005 Châteauneuf du Pape Réserve des Deux Frères is a more blockbuster-styled effort that has overflowing notes of black fruits, licorice, roasted meats, truffle and peppery herbs. Made from 100% Grenache that saw time in 1-, 2-, and 3-year-old small barrels and demi-muid, it’s full-bodied, gorgeously concentrated and ripe, with big underlying structure. Just now at the early stages of maturity, it too will have 20-25 years of overall longevity. (JD)
The 2005 Domaine Pierre Usseglio & Fils Châteauneuf-du-Pape Réserve des Deux Frères is a rock star wine that's built for the long haul with massive amounts of rich dark fruit, acidity and tannin structure. Cassis, black berry and even some blueberry notes are mixed with scored earth, ash and earth aromas on the nose. The palate is full bodied with rich fruit, high acidity and quite a bit of sweet tannins on the back end that give the finish some kick ass length. It's still drinkable at the moment due to the depth and richness of the fruit but if this closes down, it will be painful so I'd drink now or in 10+ years.
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