So here is a special treat for holiday feasting or gifting!
The Clos Saint Jean Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes ’20 was this year’s Wine Spectator’s #12/Top 100 Wines of the Year with a 95 point rating and list price of $65. These days I don’t know where one can find a similar, traditionally produced Chateauneuf for under a $100 a bottle. Regretfully, the 2020 is completely sold out.
However, we do have the new 2021 vintage of exactly the same wine. Also just rated 95 points by Wine Spectator last week, only about 900 cases are produced.
Sourced from the AOC’S most famous “Grand Cru” La Crau vineyard which sits atop a stoney plateau, the Clos Saint Jean Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes 2021 is composed of “old vine” Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, Cinsault, Vaccarese and Muscardin. The Grenache is aged in concrete for 12 months while the remainder of the blend is matured in demi-muid for 12 months.
This is a beautiful delineated wine showcasing refinement and restraint. Gorgeous black raspberry fruit with some spicy, cured tobacco wrap-leaf nuances and dusty-loamy minerality. The tannins are finely knit and well-integrated allowing for early drinkability.
“This has good concentration and energy to the dense core of dark fruit and bitter cherry, with great poise and elegance despite its ripeness (an impressive feat for the vintage). Guided by finely crushed mineral accents and tannins, this reveals pretty high-toned floral notes and leafy tobacco. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Cinsault, Vaccarèse and Muscardin. Drink now through 2032” – 95 points, Wine Spectator (November 22, 2023)