This blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre is the full expression of the land, the grapes and the care and attention lavished upon it. It will grow and develop with cellaring and the years of aging will take away none of its depth and delicate finesse.
The 2010 Chateau Sixtine Chateauneuf du Pape performed exquisitely and, again, was one of the top wines of the vintage. With better integration of the new oak than I have previously seen from Jean-Marc Diffonty, this wine's opaque ruby/purple color possesses lots of licorice, asphalt, graphite, blackberry and kirsch notes as well as hints of lavender, forest floor and garrigue. This opulent, full-bodied effort is approachable, but it will not hit its full stride for another 2-4 years. It should drink well for 15-20 years thereafter.
A dark, brawny style, with roasted apple wood and dark espresso framing the currant paste, blackberry pâte de fruit, melted black licorice and bittersweet cocoa notes. There's lots of muscle on the finish, but also lovely flickers of violet and pastis for nuance. Needs time to unwind fully. Best from 2015 through 2030.
Chateau Sixtine is the newly adopted name for the estate wines of the Diffonty family. Currently under the dynamic direction of Jean-Marc Diffonty, the reputation of the family's wines continues to grow.
One of the Southern Rhone's oldest wine families, the Diffontys have been winegrowers since 1673. From 1958 to 2010 their Chateauneuf du Pape wines gained a very high reputation under the Cuvèe du Vatican label; after 1998 their reserve wines were labeled Cuvèe du Vatican Reserve Sixtine. Beginning with the 2010 vintage, the Cuvee du Vatican name will be used for negotiant wines from the Côtes du Rhône and Chateauneuf du Pape; the estate Chateauneuf du Papes will be labeled Chateau Sixtine. There will also be a second wine from the estate, which will be labeled Manus Dei du Chateau Sixtine.