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Chateau La Nerthe Chateauneuf-du-Pape Blanc 2009

Rhone White Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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13.5% ABV
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13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Roussanne 45%, Grenache 46%, Clairette 9% & Bourboulenc 1%. The 2009 Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc exhibits honeted, waxy, white currant, melon and pear notes, crisp acidity and plenty of freshness as well as fruit. Drink it over the next several years.

Critical Acclaim

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W&S 92
Wine & Spirits
For all its oak scents and deep yellow color, this is remarkably lively, the wood infusing the fruit the way that a sprinkle of nutmeg adds another facet to a peach pie. Smooth and waxy with caramel warmth, it's rich yet not heavy, ending on a citrus note that's clean and fresh. Give it a year to meld; this should show well with next Thanksgiving's turkey.
WS 92
Wine Spectator
Ripe and very pure, with unadorned Jonagold apple, chamomile and Cavaillon melon notes that sail along, carried by fine minerality, with a long, salted butter-tinged finish.
RP 92
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Even better (probably due to its additional year of bottle age), the 2009 Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc is composed of 46% Grenache Blanc, 45% Roussanne and the rest Clairette and Bourboulenc. Abundant notes of honeysuckle, candle wax, ripe melons, pears and pineapple confiture are present in this full-bodied, evolved, quickly maturing white. The 2010 has a decade of life ahead of it, and the 2009 should last 5-6 years.
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Chateau La Nerthe

Chateau La Nerthe

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Chateau La Nerthe, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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Archives affirm Château La Nerthe’s existence as early as 1560, while suggesting an even more distant past dating to the dawn of the region’s wine culture in the 12th century making it one of Châteauneuf’s oldest estates. Located in the heart of the Châteauneuf-du-Pape AOC region of southern France not far from Avignon, the 225 acres of Château La Nerthe vineyards are located in a single block around the Château and have been certified Organic since 1998. The terroir is very typical for the region: vineyards runs along a slope, at the top of which the vines dig their roots into soils of sandy-clay, on the surface there is a layer of the famous galettes, large, round, well-worn stones that originated in the Alps, having been carried down to the Rhône by the glaciers of previous ice ages. The further down the slope of the vineyard you travel, the more these stones dominate. All 14 of the permitted primary varietals are planted-Grenache dominates 62% of vineyards and the vines average over 40 years old. Château La Nerthe is THE expression of Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

Chateauneuf-du-Pape

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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.

Rhône White Blends

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Full-bodied and flavorful, white Rhône blends originate from France’s Rhône Valley. Today these blends are also becoming popular in other regions, proving most successful in Spain, Australia and California. Typically some combination of Grenache blanc, Marsanne, Roussanne and Viognier form the basis of a white Rhône blend with varyiong degrees of flexibility depending on the exact appellation.

In the Glass

Each variety contibutes something unique and different. Round, textural Grenache blanc gives green apple and white stone fruit flavors; weighty Marsanne adds structure and honeysuckle aromas; russet-colored Roussanne lends intriguing herbal, tea-like notes while Viognier provides a creamy texture and elegant aromatics. The flavor of the final wine will depend on the chosen components of the blend and their respective proportions.

Perfect Pairings

White Rhône blends are quite versatile food pairing wines and can work with light to medium rich meals that might often be matched to red wines. Heavier fish dishes with bold seasoning like grilled swordfish with caper butter or baked, herb-crusted mahi mahi are natural allies for these flavorful wines. Other ideal dishes include roast pork in mustard sauce, poached lobster with beurre blanc, or a rich and savory vegetable quiche. `

Sommelier Secret

In the Northern Rhône, blends of Marsanne and Roussanne are common in the appellations of St.-Joseph, Crozes-Hermitage, Hermitage and St-Péray. Condrieu and Château-Grillet can produce single-varietal Viognier only. The Southern Rhône, on the other hand, has much more variety, with many more permitted grapes including the ones named above as well as Bourboulenc, Clairette, Picpoul and Ugni Blanc.

PIN302616_2009 Item# 109326