Number 1 on Wine Spectator's Top 100 of 2007!
"This is really tight now, but it's packed with dark fig, currant, espresso, licorice and chocolate notes. Superfleshy but seriously structured, there's layer after layer of sweet spice, fruit and minerality pumping through the finish, with lots of latent depth and power. Far more backward than the 2003 and 2004 on release, but considering this typically puts on weight as it ages, it should be a monster, à la the 1990, when it reaches its peak. Best from 2009 through 2030."
"The 2005 Chateauneuf du Pape has a deeper color than the 2004 and 2003 that I tasted side by side, and with its dense ruby/purple color to the rim, the wine has a fabulous bouquet of kirsch liqueur, raspberries, licorice, and a combination of spice and Provencal herbs. It is rich, full-bodied, with high but sweet tannin, good acidity, and a blockbuster finish of close to 45+ seconds. This is a knock-out wine that will probably need 4-5 years of bottle age and last for 20-25 years. This exquisitely run estate continues to turn out wines of great fragrance, richness as well as flavor authority and integrity."
Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate
Barrel Sample: 94-96 Points
"Avril presented the components, from foudres, and opined that he now prefers this to showing an approximate blend because "blending on the spot isn't an assemblage, it's just a melange, and a wine needs two months after blending to harmonize." Sample #1, 70% grenache and 30% mourvedre: Blackberry, dark cherry, plum and licorice on the nose. Sweeter on the palate, with bright raspberry and bitter cherry flavors. This is "about 15.8% alcohol," says Avril. Sample #2, 70% grenache and 30% syrah: Intensely perfumed nose combines powerful kirsch, cassis and Asian spices. Silky and sweet, with a deep cherry flavor and suave tannins. Sample #3, a blend of 80% grenache, 10% mourvedre and 10% syrah: A strong floral quality lifts the ripe raspberry and licorice aromas. Lush, broad and silky, with impressive concentration. Sample #4, all grenache: Bright raspberry and strawberry on the nose. Impressively silky and sweet, with strong minerality, fine tannins and excellent persistence. The final blend should be a great Clos des Papes.
International Wine Cellar