“Checking in as a blend of 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre that spent three years in foudre, the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape is a beauty. Loaded with classical notes of lavender, dried garrigue, pepper and sweet black raspberry fruits, it’s about as close to walking through a street market in the south of France as you can get. Ripe, forward, sexy and medium to full-bodied, drink it anytime over the coming 10-15 years.
One of the highlight tastings during my two weeks spent working in the northern Rhône was with Philippe and Marcel Guigal, who in this critic’s opinion, consistently fashion some of the greatest wines in the world. Looking at the 2011 Côte Rôties, which were bottled earlier this year, these are gorgeous wines that show the perfumed, sexy nature of the vintage; yet, they have more density, concentration and depth than just about every other wine from the vintage. Marcel characterized the vintage as charming and elegant, and while they’re insanely good even today, they’ll evolve gracefully and have broad drink windows. The 2012s should be bottled next year and this is another terrific vintage at this estate, which shouldn’t be a shock to anyone who follows the estate. The wines are already expressive, yet have more fat and texture than the 2011s, although maybe not the same level of focus or length. I suspect this is another vintage that will show nicely on release next year and age gracefully, with broad drink windows. The 2013s, in contrast, are inky, masculine, structured and not very much fun to taste at the moment. The extended elevage will help, but these will certainly be longer term prospects that will demand cellaring.”
92 out of 100 Points
– Jeb Dunnuck / eRobertParker.com –