Even more impressive and coming from a single parcel of vines planted in 1909, the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Roussanne Vieilles Vignes is an off-the-hook effort and certainly the greatest white produced in the Southern Rhone. Offering up exuberant and perfumed notes of marmalade, buttered citrus, orange rind and lavender, this full-bodied voluptuously textured white has knockout richness that’s balanced by gorgeous purity and freshness. Always showing brilliantly in their youth, this cuvee can shut down and be hard to judge when (or if) it will come back around. Per the Perrin family, every vintage goes through this stage and re-emerges at some point. You can drink them in their exuberant youth (which is my recommendation), or cellar them and hope for the best. Drink now-2018+ (JD)
Gorgeous, with lush mango, creamed pineapple and Cavaillon melon fruit flavors that glide along, featuring a light fresh butter edge that holds sway on the finish. Despite the alluring, tropical profile, the lovely backdrop of verbena and wet stone should blossom with cellaring. Roussanne. Best from 2015 through 2025.
(aged in a 50/50 blend of stainless steel tanks and oak barrels for eight months): Vivid yellow. An explosively perfumed bouquet evokes ripe melon, nectarine and mango, and powerful mineral and floral elements add vivacity and lift. Broad, sappy and deeply concentrated, offering intense orchard fruit and pit fruit flavors that stain the palate while showing surprising vivacity. Strikes a deft balance between richness and finesse, picking up ginger and honey flourishes on the back half. Clings with outstanding energy and persistence on the finish, leaving sappy pear nectar and floral notes behind. (JR)
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