Clos du Caillou Chateauneuf-du-Pape Quartz 2010
Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
This wine is a beautiful cherry and red blackberry color, with hints of violet. There is an elegant nose with aromas of raspberry, strawberry, quince compote, and a bit of wood. The palate is very fresh with great smoothness, with aromas of blackberry liqueur. It is dominated by the final notes of myrtle liqueur and blueberry.
The Wine Advocate - "Even better, the 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape Les Quartz offers additional depth and richness, with ample dark fruits, blackberry, crushed rock and edgy minerality giving way to a full-bodied, big, powerful wine that won’t hit prime-time for another 3-4 years. When all is said and done, it will have two decades of longevity. "
Wine Spectator - "This is fruit in hyperdrive, with a torrent of crushed blueberry, boysenberry and blackberry flavors rushing along, laced with sweet licorice and fruitcake and driving through the long, very polished finish, where a nice echo of charcoal keeps it honest. Really gorgeous. Drink now through 2025."
International Wine Cellar - "Saturated ruby. Deeply pitched aromas of dark fruit liqueur, potpourri and garrigue, with smoke and spice overtones. Showing an impressive blend of power and energy, with sappy blackberry and bitter cherry flavors that become spicier in the glass. Closes with serious punch, velvety tannins and lingering spice and dark fruit notes."
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Clos Du Caillou Winery
"I recognize that I am one of the luckiest people in the world to have this job, and the privilege of tasting so many incredible wines, but certainly the efforts produced by Domaine du Caillou since 1998 rank among the most exciting I have ever tasted."
—Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
From robust Côtes-du-Rhône to memorable Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Clos du Caillou wines arguably represent some of the finest values in all of France. Proprietor Sylvie Vacheron and winemaker Bruno Gaspard are keeping the great work of the late Jean-Denis Vacheron alive with wines that are heady, robust and mouth-wateringly lush.
Caillou tends wonderfully old Grenache vines, some of which are 70 to 100 years old. With older Syrah and Mourvèdre added to the mix, it’s no wonder that Caillou wines are across the board impressive for their power, extract and deep minerality. The estate’s Châteauneuf terroir borders the impressive domaines of Chateau Rayas and Beaucastel.
Yet many of the Vacheron-Pouizin family's old vines are classified, by a quirk of 1923 politics, Côtes-du-Rhône and Côtes-du-Rhône-Villages. It’s why our Côtes-du-Rhône barrel selections show surprisingly like its kin in Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
In 1996 Jean-Denis Vacheron took full control of the viticulture and élévage at this estate. Under his stewardship, the wines of Caillou steadily gained stature, and today are benchmarks for the appellation. He understood that temperature-controlled fermentation and a cool, clean cellar are necessary to craft wines with refinement and true complexity. View all Clos Du Caillou Wines
About Chateauneuf-du-PapeView a map of Chateauneuf-du-Pape wineries (shah-too-NUHF due Pahp)Southern Rhone's landmark region, Chateauneuf du Pape, was the first region to gain AC status in France. That was the 1920s – it's history goes much further back than that. As the name suggests, the wine region was named after the "new papal home," referring to the period of time in the 1300's when the pope resided in Avignon instead of Rome.
Photo of galets covering the soil at Chateau de Beaucastel
Notable FactsThere are 13 allowed varieties in Chateauneuf du Pape (14 if you count Grenache Blanc separately from Grenache Noir). Grenache is the primary variety, followed by Syrah and Mourvedre as well as Cinsault. About 97% of the wines here are red, although many chateaux are producing whites ranging from quaffable to decadent and ageworthy. Reds from the best estates emit wonderful flavors of gamey spice, blackberries and currant, as well as the herbs and spices that are known to grow in the region.
Note on the soil: The grapes grow on soils covered in rounded, smooth stones called galets (gah-lay). The stones naturally cover most of the soils throughout Chateauneuf du Pape and are two fold in their duties. First, they are able to reflect and absorb the heat, to quicken the ripening of the grapes. They also help to hold in moisture so that the soils are not dried out by the hot Southern French sun.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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1 rating, 1 with reviewRon Blachman - Berkeley, CA411/15/2014Bottled and corked to last. Saturated, medium-dark ruby-garnet, medium-to-full body, leggy. The nose starts out just small-to-medium sized and a bit simple, with air it grows and acquires complexity: dark fruit, cooked cherries, currants, a hint of pepper, oak; after a couple of hours the nose begins to fade, though. Big flavors, lots of tarry fruit, acid enough to carry the fruit and to promote graceful aging, a firm backbone of tannins; the alcohol comes through a bit strong, though. This wants at least until 2019 and will probably improve for another five years after that; it will hold into the early 2030's. This is a lovely wine but the nose is not as big as I'd expect and I'm not sure it is worth the price. It reminds me of a very similar blend from Spain: Montsant - except I bought that for less than a quarter the price!
Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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