The wine :
Château de Beaucastel has long been considered one of the great wines of France. It is unanimously renowned for its balance, elegance and ageing potential. Beaucastel has an extraordinary terroir at the Northern end of the appellation with heavy exposure to the Mistral. All 13 varieties of the appellation have been organically grown here since the sixties.
The vintage :
An exceptional vintage for Grenache.
A hot summer with cool nights until the end of the harvest.
Châteauneuf du Pape, between Orange and Avignon. Château de Beaucastel Red is a 70-hectare vineyard.
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 manually and separately. Vinification is completed in truncated oak barrels for the reductive grapes (Mourvèdre and Syrah) and in traditional tiled cement tanks for the oxidative grapes (such as Grenache). After the malolactic fermentations, the family blends the different varieties and then the wine ages in oak Foudres for a year before being bottled.
Grenache : 30%
Mourvèdre : 30%
Vaccarèse, Terret Noir, Muscardin, Clairette, Picpoul, Picardan, Bourboulenc, Roussanne : 15%
Syrah : 10%
Counoise : 10%
Cinsault : 5%
15°C and if possible decant before serving.
Tasting notes :
Great nose of ripe red fruit, truffles, under-wood, cigar box and wet soil.
The mouth is harmonious, silky, round and the tannins are soft and sweet.
A great wine that can be drunk now.
A seductive wine, with lush flavors. Wonderfully deep ruby in color, with rosemary, tomato and earth aromas, full-bodied, focused raspberry and chocolate flavors, silky tannins and a long finish.--Châteauneuf-du-Pape retrospective. Best after 1994.
Wine Spectator, Note : 91/100, 1991-10-15
I have had the 1985 from regular format as well as magnum, with few differences noted. The color remains a healthy dark ruby with pink and amber at the edge. Always fragrant, it offers up sweet, jammzsy, peppery, herb-tinged black cherry, leather, and grilled meat aromas. Soft and medium to full-bodied, with low acidity and sweet tannin, this plush, round, graceful, fully mature Beaucastel is best consumed over the next 4-5 years.
Wine Advocate, Note : 93/100, 2000-06-01
Robe très sombre à reflets noirs. Arômes de fruits très cuits, avec des épices. Un vin surmûri, très flatteur et agréable à boire en l'état. Il serait cependant dommage de ne pas l'attendre : il gagnera en complexité.
La Revue du Vin de France
Imported by Vineyard Brands. 13.6 % Alcohol. This wine revealed the Beaucastel funk on the nose with higher toned, mature aromas. In the mouth were earthy to funky fruit flavors that bore thin, higher-pitched, cool red fruit. With air the wine picked up good complexity, cleaned up some, and took on weight. It showed that there was still fruit and even tannins. *** Now-2020.
Aaron Nix-Gomez, Hogs Head Wine, Note : ***, 2015-07-28