clos des papes, chateauneuf-du-pape, rouge 2006
It's always a joy to taste at this estate, as Vincent almost forces you to taste older vintages. The 2006 Châteauneuf-du-Pape was singing and is a gem in this often overlooked and underrated vintage. Currants, black cherries, garrigue, Asian spices and licorice notes all flow to a medium to full-bodied, impeccably balanced (the hallmark of this vintage) Châteauneuf-du-Pape that has sweet tannin, loads of fruit, and a classic, character-filled personality.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2006 Chateauneuf du Pape is one of the two or three candidates for the wine of the vintage. An extraordinarily great wine, the 2006 is far superior to the 2005, which was amazing, and while made in a different style, is as great as the 2003, and such legends as 1990 and 1978. Fashioned from a minuscule 21 hectoliters per hectare, and tipping the scales at 15.2% natural alcohol, the 2006 boasts a dense ruby/purple color to the rim, in addition to an extraordinary bouquet of melted licorice, spring flowers, raspberries, black currants, spice box, and earth. In the mouth, it is utterly profound – full-bodied and multidimensional with astonishing purity, length, equilibrium, and intensity. This is a superb vintage for the Avrils, and Vincent deserves huge accolades for producing a wine of such incredible intensity and complexity. Think of Clos des Papes as a Chateauneuf du Pape with the complexity of a top-notch grand cru Burgundy from the Cote de Nuits.
This has terrific purity, with a stunningly pure beam of cassis holding sway over fruitcake, melted licorice and incense notes. Shows impressive density for the vintage, but this is suave, elegant and seamless through the finish, with terrific underlying minerality.