By: Keith Mabry
K&L Staff Member
When I was offered this wine, I was a tad skeptical but very intrigued. A bottle of 1972 from a producer that was just born? What?! But that's what Xavier Vignon has done, he bought a time machine and went back to make...nah, just kidding. Vignon is a regarded winemaker who established a relationship years ago with a grower that had a secret stash of wine aging at a glacial pace in a concrete tank from 1972. After trying this wine, Vignon wanted to bottle it. Most consumers and even collectors know very little of Chateauneuf before the 90's. It was the 1998 vintage that propelled the region to modern fame with Beaucastel's Spectator Wine of the Year. So it is rare to try something with this kind of age, from a recent bottling. No variation, no oxidized bottles, no disappointment, a pure expression of intent. I tasted the wine and it was one of the most exciting and coolest things I have tried this year. Full of dried raspberries, potpourri, dusty spices, burnished leather, it hums with energy. Like aged Rioja meets Chateauneuf, each sip brings anticipation of the next. Like I said, one of the coolest wines this year. What to do with this? Savor with a nice plate of charcuterie and cheeses. Keep it simple and let the wine speak of its past, nearly 50 years ago and what an interesting story it has to tell. What an experience!