Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Rouge 2011
AOC Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Vallée du Rhône, France
The vintage :
The 2011 vintage is a vintage of contrasts. That is to say an unusually hot, dry spring followed by a wet and rainy beginning of July and then an Indian summer lasting until the end of October. Carefully sorting and destemming the harvest allowed for a great vintage, particularly for the late harvest varieties.
Château de Beaucastel has long been regarded as one of the greatest wines in France. It is notorious for its elegance, balance and ageing potential. Beaucastel has an exceptional terroir at the Northern limit of Châteauneuf du Pape, exposed to the Mistral wind. All thirteen varieties of the appellation have been organically grown since the sixties.
Châteauneuf du Pape, between Orange and Avignon, Château de Beaucastel red is a
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Château de Beaucastel is 110 hectares, with one single plot at the north of the appellation. The terroir is archetypal of the best terroirs in Châteauneuf: rolled pebbles on the surface, sand, clay and limestone deeper down. The vines are old and have been organically grown for 50 years, which has allowed the roots to grow exceptionally deep.
Beaucastel grows all thirteen grape varieties authorised by the appellation.
Each variety is harvested separately and manually. Vinification takes place in oak fermenters for the reductive varieties (Mourvèdre, Syrah) and in traditional enamelled concrete tanks for the Oxydative grapes (all the others). Once the malolactic fermentation is finished, the Famille Perrin blends the different varieties. The blend is then aged in oak Foudres for a year before being bottled.
Cinsault : 5%
Counoise : 10%
Grenache : 30%
Mourvèdre : 30%
Syrah : 10%
Nearly black in colour.
The nose is very delicate and powerful at the same time, with red fruit, blackcurrants, blackberries, spices, thyme and lavender.
The bouquet is very elegant, rich and round, with figs, cherries, blackcurrants and stewed fruit, all with great acidity. The tannins are present but very delicate.
Around 15°C. If possible, decant the wine.
Reminiscent of a lighter weight 2009, the 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape offers up a sweet bouquet of spiced black cherries, plum, truffle, saddle leather and underbrush. Coming from tiny yields (which were down 50% from 2010), this medium to full-bodied 2011 is gorgeously textured and has solid mid-palate depth, terrific purity of fruit and ripe tannin. Relatively approachable and enjoyable even now, it should nevertheless evolve gracefully for 15-20 years.
Jeb Dunnuck, Wine Advocate, Note : 94/100, 2013-11-01
Une Famille redécouvre sa maison à la fin des vacances de printemps.
La robe est grenat sombre. Le bouquet est encore légèrement sucré, plein des souvenirs d'exhalaisons minérales, de transats taillés dans le chêne et d'océans de cerises Burlat. Sur le palais, de modernes parfums de bonbons accompagnés de tanins moyennement corsés, songent aux fragrances d'herbes de Provence et d'encens qu'ils ont laissées en rétro-olfaction. La finale est riche, sans excés. Du poivre, du cassis et des bleuets l'accueillent avec bienveillance. L'un des "Grand Cru" de l'appellation.
France Art de Vivre, Note : 92/100, 2013-10-31
The 2011 Beaucastel, which is an identical blend, is the result of an incredibly severe triage because of the irregularity of ripening essentially across all varieties in 2011. The wine displays some tannin, is medium to full-bodied, with lots of Provencal herbs, pepper, incense, blueberry and black currant fruit. It seemed to me that the Mourvedre was showing through strongly when I tasted it. The wine is long, rich, not one of the great vintages by any means, but still very well-made. This wine will need 2-3 years of cellaring and drink well for 15 or more.
Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, Note : 89 - 92 /100
Inky ruby. Powerful, expressive aromas of red- and blackcurrant, cherry and licorice, with suave anise and floral overtones. Juicy and precise, with tangy red and dark berry flavors, supple texture and a strong mineral note on the back. Spicy on the finish, which shows very good focus and length. This is impressively elegant and should be drinkable on the young side.
Josh Raynolds, International Wine Cellar, Note : 91-93/100