Medium red. Pungent red berry, floral and mineral aromas are reminiscent of Pinot Noir. Deeply flavored but not heavy, with sweet red fruit and floral pastille flavors and an undercurrent of tangy minerals. Showing very good freshness and energy today, with impressive finishing lift and cut. Here's another wine that I would never have guessed was from a super-hot vintage. I rated this 91 points at the outset. (JR)
I had high hopes that the 2003 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes would score in the low to mid-90s out of bottle, but no such luck. Nevertheless, this is an outstanding Châteauneuf-du-Pape and certainly a fine value. Deep ruby/plum/garnet with a wonderfully sweet and flamboyant nose of kirsch liqueur, ground pepper, and garrigue, the wine has a beautiful texture, full body, notes of plum, fig, and licorice, and a heady, glycerin-imbued finish. It is already delicious, but does not possess the extraordinary depth I thought it would. Nevertheless, it is seductive and best drunk over the next 7-8 years. (RP)
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