Domaine de la Solitude Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cornelia Constanza 2016
A full-bodied, elegant and refined wine, tannic while remaining velvety smooth with gooseberry, toffee, cinnamon, cardamom and sichuan pepper, finishing very long on the palate.
Pair with Chevreuil in sauce “grand veneur” with a confit of bilberries and chestnuts, duck with wild mushroom sauce, stuffed pigeon, capon with truffles, chocolate gateau, clafoutis of cherries, “comté” cheese
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Pure Grenache brought up in a mix of foudre, old barrels, and stainless steel, the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cornelia Constanza is up there with the finest versions of this cuvée to date. Huge notes of cassis, kirsch liqueur, crushed flowers, and incense give way to a rich, powerful, yet graceful wine that has no hard edges and a great finish. It’s orgasmic stuff and Grenache lovers shouldn't miss it!
Partially aged in foudre and older oak, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Cornelia Constanza hints at smoke and vanilla while remaining focused on red plums and stone fruit. Full-bodied and plush, with a long, mouthwatering, mocha-tinged finish, this sexy beast is all old-vine Grenache from sandy soils in La Crau.
In this wine, judicious oak influences lend piquant notes of vanilla, smoke and cacao to black cherry and plum. Made from old-vine Grenache from the famed La Crau vineyards, it’s intensely ripe and welcoming, with a voluminous, glycerol feel. Fine, feathery tannins accentuate the immediate appeal of this fullthrottled wine. Dreyfus, Ashby & Co.
In the 1980s, brothers Michel and Jean Lançon took the future of Domaine de la Solitude in their hands, focusing attention on the vineyards. Fertilizers have not been used at Solitude for the past ten years. Over the past several years, Michel’s son Florent Lançon has been taking over the day-to-day operations of Domaine de la Solitude, continuing to make improvements while preserving the traditions of his father and uncle. The Estate is a contiguous 100 acres, planted to 86 acres of red grapes and 14.8 acres of white grapes, with vines averaging 50 years of age.
Driven by the desire to produce the best possible wines while still respecting the traditions of Chateauneuf-du-Pape and their lineage, in 1999, Michel and Jean decided to introduce four prestige cuvées and added Cuvée Barberini Rouge, Cuvée Barberini Blanc, Réserve Secrète, and Cornelia Constanza to the winery’s production.
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, Châteauneuf-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 Châteauneuf-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 Châteauneuf-du-Pape is white wine. 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.
Grenache thrives in any warm, Mediterranean climate where ample sunlight allows its clusters to achieve full phenolic ripeness. While Grenache's birthplace is Spain (there called Garnacha), today it is more recognized as the key player in the red blends of the Southern Rhône, namely Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Côtes du Rhône and its villages. Somm Secret—The Italian island of Sardinia produces bold, rustic, single varietal Grenache (there called Cannonau). California, Washington and Australia have achieved found success with Grenache, both flying solo and in blends.