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Clos des Papes Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2001

Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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Winemaker Notes

Blend: 65% Grenache, 20% Mourvedre, 10% Syrah, 5% Counoise

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Paul Avril feels that purchasers of the 2001 Chateauneuf du Pape should “wait ten years” before drinking it. A blend of 65% Grenache, 20% Mourvedre, 10% Syrah, and 5% Counoise, all aged in large wood foudres prior to being bottled without filtration, was produced from low yields of 27 hectoliters per hectare. A deep ruby/purple color is accompanied by a sweet bouquet of figs, raspberries, new saddle leather, autumnal forest floor, and resiny notes. Full-bodied with beautiful purity as well as a strikingly rich mouthfeel, this seriously endowed Chateauneuf admirably conceals its 14.5% alcohol. A structured finish and impressive extract levels suggest considerable longevity. This firmly tannic, intensely concentrated 2001 boasts great aromatic and palate presence, but it remains young and unevolved. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2020+.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
This has hit its second phase with beautiful definition, showing hints of Lapsang souchong tea, roasted apple wood and juniper, joined by singed bay leaf, mulled blackberry and black currant fruit and a long, spice box-infused finish. As graceful and restrained as this is, it still has the reserve tank and balance for extended aging.
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Clos des Papes

Clos des Papes

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Clos des Papes, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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the "Clos des Papes" estate inclueds some forty scattered hectares, approximately 80 acres.
There are no fewer than 24 different plots of land, which include some of the most beautiful soils in the Chateauneuf vineyards. The geographical separation of our vineyards enables us to control ripeness at harvest time, since each sector does not necessarily reach the exact same stage at the same time. It also allows us to combine different varieties planted to the south. "Clos des Papes makes both red wines and white wines (10% of the production) for long-keeping, using traditional vinification and maturing. As I mentioned previously, our yields are deliberately low (an average of 28hl/hectare). and then undergo further strict sorting, to uphold our quality.

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 Blends

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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.

In the Glass

The taste profile of a Rhône blend 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 Pairings

Rhône red blends typically make for very food-friendly wines. These can 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 Secret

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.

ARP56765_2001 Item# 56765