Bosquet des Papes Chateauneuf-du-Pape Tradition 2016
A nice red purple color with shiny highlights. On the nose, this Chateauneuf-du-Pape spreads aromas of little red berries. It has a sweeping silky smooth mouth.
It will ideally be served with game, such as jugged hare or jugged boar.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A terrific example of this bottling, the 2016 Châteauneuf du Pape Cuvée Tradition is a blend of 75% Grenache, 12% Mourvèdre, 10% Syrah and tiny amounts of Cinsault, Counoise and Vaccarèse. About 40% was destemmed in this textbook vintage, the fruit coming from 40 different parcels around the appellation. Floral and raspberry notes emerge on the nose, while the palate is full-bodied but silky textured, ending on subtle shadings of Provence herbs and licorice. It's a relative bargain that's easy to drink now, but it should easily go a decade or more in a cool cellar.
A true gem of a wine, the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape checks in as 75% Grenache, 12% Mourvèdre, 10% Syrah and the balance a mix of permitted varieties. This classic cuvée comes from a multitude of sites throughout the appellation and is partially destemmed and brought up in concrete tanks and demi-muids. Terrific notes of peppery garrigue, new leather, and sweet red and black fruits all give way to a silky, seamless, full-bodied Châteauneuf-du-Pape that has no hard edges and a great finish. The classic cuvées are so good in 2016, it makes you wonder if the more expensive special cuvées are worth it.
Ripe and focused, with a beam of raspberry puree and plum compote that is carried by mouthwatering red licorice and singed apple wood notes. A bright blast of tobacco and floral details run through the finish, with fresh acidity pulling the elements along. Best from 2020 through 2030.
Famous for its full-bodied, seductive and spicy reds with flavor and aroma characteristics reminiscent of black cherry, baked raspberry, garrigue, olive tapenade, lavender and baking spice, Chateauneuf-du-Pape is the leading sub-appellation of the southern Rhône River Valley. Large pebbles resembling river rocks, called "galets" in French, dominate most of the terrain. The stones hold heat and reflect it back up to the low-lying gobelet-trained vines. Though the galets are typical, they are not prominent in every vineyard. Chateau Rayas is the most obvious deviation with very sandy soil.
According to law, eighteen grape varieties are allowed in Chateauneuf-du-Pape and most wines are blends of some mix of these. For reds, Grenache is the star player with Mourvedre and Syrah coming typically second. Others used include Cinsault, Counoise and occasionally Muscardin, Vaccarèse, Picquepoul Noir and Terret Noir.
Only about 6-7% of wine from Chateauneuf-du-Pape is white. Blends and single-varietal bottlings are typically based on the soft and floral Grenache Blanc but Clairette, Bourboulenc and Roussanne are grown with some significance.
The wine of Chateauneuf-du-Pape takes its name from the relocation of the papal court to Avignon. The lore says that after moving in 1309, Pope Clément V (after whom Chateau Pape-Clément in Pessac-Léognan is named) ordered that vines were planted. But it was actually his successor, John XXII, who established the vineyards. The name however, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, translated as "the pope's new castle," didn’t really stick until the 19th century.
With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, red Rhône blends originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley. Grenache, supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre typically form the base of the blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. With some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in Priorat, Washington, Australia and California.
Tasting Notes for Rhône Blends
A Rhône blend is a dry, red wine and will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit and a plush texture. Syrah supplies dark fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy and earthy notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume and earthy flavor as well as structure and a healthy dose of color. New World examples tend to be fruit-forward in style, while those from the Old World will often have more earth, structure and herbal components on top of ripe red and blue fruit.
Perfect Food Pairings for Rhône Blends
Rhône Blends work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes, playing equally well with beef, pork, lamb or game. Braised beef cheeks, grilled steak or sausages, roasted pork and squab are all fine pairings.
Sommelier Secrets for Rhône Blends
Some regions like to put their own local spin on the red Rhône blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.