Thursday 28 February 2013

A Châteauneuf-du-Pape Duo From Domaine de la Solitude

Domained de la Solitude is one of the oldest estates in the area. It has been making wine since 1604! The estate did an estate bottling prior to the French Revolution, really amazing given the fact that Lafite-Rothschild did not estate bottle until 1797, after the Revolution.
But I´m tasting some vintages a bit younger - this time...

The white 1993 Châteauneuf consists of 40% Grenache Blanc, 30% Roussanne, 20% Clairette and 10% Bourbolenc. The Roussanne have been fermented and aged in 100% new oak and the other varietals in stainless steel tanks. I have taken the cepage percentages from Parkers Wines from the Rhone Valley, publiced in 1997.
In comparison, the 2010 consists of  50% Clairette, 10% Grenache blanc, 20% Roussanne, 20% Bourboulenc, according to the estate.

The red 1998 Châteauneuf consist, according to Parker, of 60% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 15% Mourvèdre and 5% Cinsault. When we get to the 2009 vintage, the cepage is 55% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 15% Mourvèdre, according to the estate.

As you can see from the pictures I experimented a bit with the glasses, to see which glass, of the choosen two, would behave best with these Châteauneuf´s? Lets find out!

1993 Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Domaine de la Solitude
From the Riesling glass (Riedel Extreme) this has a big, mature nose that reminds of a mature, dry Riesling with notes of dried apricots, grilles lemons, warm grass and a touch of saffron.
In the Burgundy glass (Riedel Vinum) it broadens on the nose and the grass and saffron notes disappear and instead there are lovely scents of creamy apricot fruit, dry honey, oatmeal cookies, fennel and a touch of an eraser. More deep and complex in this glass. Very good.
From the Riesling glass the taste is big, round and creamy with notes of almond paste, lemon and olive oil mixed, dried herbs and a touch of alcohol.
Drinking from the Burgundy glass there is more warmth and a broader feeling. A very good warmth. Reminds me of a mature Chardonnay. The acidity is a tad low, but this is a very good mouthful.
I prefer the Burgundy glass.
87p   (tasted 2013/02)

1998 Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Domaine de la Solitude
From the Bordeaux glass (Riedel Vinum) this Châteauneuf displays a mature nose with notes of red currants, some rasberries, old leather, pine forest and paint, in a fine old fashioned way. Medium deep. This is fully mature. Very good.
In the Burgundy glass (Riedel Extreme) the nose becomes sweeter with a touch of alcohol. More rasberries and warm herbs. Bigger but a tad fatty.
From the Bordeaux glass the taste is mature, tight and pure with lots of red fruit, undergrowth, herbs, pine forest, resin and a fine warmth. Stern in a good way. Really good. In a perfect drinking stage.
The Burgundy glass gives an impression of a bigger, sweeter wine and the fine stern quality is mostly gone. The finish is warmer. Fine from this glass too but I prefer the Bordeaux glass.
88p    (tasted 2013/02)