Weekend Vinopolpick – August 9th

August 9, 2014

Four Unique Winemakers
Arriving Next Week

Domaine La Roquète

In 1986, the brothers Daniel and Frédéric Brunier purchased the Domaine La Roquète from the previous owner, Rene Laugier, who retired.  The Brunier brothers are the famed owners of the Domaine du Vieux Telegraphe, known for its rich, earthy style of Chateau.  Since purchasing the estate, they have made strides in improving the tannic structure of the wines to bring greater balance, freshness and integration.  They also replanted some of the vineyard land to remove dead and poorly performing vines.  In 1998, they finished renovations of the winery and created a vat room for vinification.

The Domaine la Roquète is twenty-nine hectares of difficult to farm vineyard land in the north of Chateauneuf-du-Pape.  Here, the Domaine has holdings on and around the Plateau du Pielong.  The plateau is one of the highest elevations around the village of Chateauneuf.  The soil is covered in the galets roules, the famous large silica pebbles scattered by glaciers from the Alps.  The L’Accent bottling is sourced from the upper part of the plateau.  The La Roquete (from which the Domaine took its name) and Pignan vineyards are along the eastern portion of the plateau.  The sites are about 30% galets roules with more intermixed sand than on the plateau.  The sandiness of the two vineyards is said to contribute to the elegance of the wines.  The third vineyard is Colombis in the southwest.  It has a thin white limestone topsoil above a thin layer of water-retaining clayl with hard limestone bedrock beneath.  It is the source of the majority of the Syrah.

The grapes are handpicked from vines averaging 40 years old with a blend of approximately 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvedre.  The wines are fermented and aged in stainless steel before being aged in oak casks for 8 months.  They are bottles unfined and unfiltered.  Structurally, they differ greatly from the Vieux Telegraphe: the wines are lighter with finesse and elegance, and are enjoyable in their youth.  

Domaine La Roquète Arriving August 14th

Vignobles Brunier Domaine La Roquete Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2010 ($59.95) $39 special 
Wine Spectator 92 points 
“Silky and briary, with lots of pepper, savory and tobacco notes coursing along, while a hint of shiso leaf separates them from the blackberry and black currant confiture flavors. Lovely, finely beaded acidity offsets the tarry grip. Great range and tension. Best from 2014 through 2028. 1,200 cases imported.”

This is the best price in the USA today!
The next best price is $49.99 / bottle

Vignobles Brunier L’Accent de La Roquete Chateauneuf-du-Pape Rouge 2010 ($89.95) $59 special
Wine spectator 94 points 
“Flavors of melted licorice, blood orange, black tea, macerated black currant, anise and smoldering tobacco have been woven together here with a thread of alder that ties up the full-bodied finish with grace. Shows power, but also definition, and retains a lovely, lingering feel. Best from 2013 through 2026. 89 cases imported.”

This is the best price in the USA today!
The next best price is $61.09 / bottle

Want more Chateauneuf du Pape?
Keep reading for a full stock list!
Just a reminder about our current shipping specials during this season:

We offer flat rate shipping on any size single / single shipment order
-to Oregon for $17,
-Washington & Idaho for $20,
-and California for $25

For our friends east of the Rockies,
we are offering 3 day select shipping for the same price as ground.

Bastide Blanche Bandol

In the early ’70s Michel and Louis Bronzo acquired the property of Bastide Blanche, with the goal of producing top Bandol wines to rival Chateauneuf-du-Pape and express the unique Bandol terroir. Their painstaking efforts were rewarded in 1993 when vintage conditions created the benchmark year that put both Bandol and Domaine de la Bastide-Blanche on the map. The current winemaker, Stephane Bourret, has continued to improve winemaking at Bastide Blanche, converting vineyards to organic and beginning to use biodynamis practices over the last 3 years.

Common each year to their wines are very low yields, never more than 34 or 35 Hl/Ha, and impeccable cellar conditions and attention. Situated in St. Anne de Castellet, Bastide Blanche enjoys a terroir rich in limestone. One of the most ripe and expressive Bandols, the Bandol Rouge is a blend of primarily Mourvedre with small amounts Grenache and Cinsault. With a focus on quality and hard work, Bastide Blanche continues to be one of Bandol’s most celebrated estates. 

Domaine de la Bastide – Arriving August 15th

Domaine de la Bastide Blanche Bandol Rouge 2011 ($29.95) $24 special
Wine Advocate 93 points 
“The 2011 Bandol offers up a similar, traditionally styled personality with ample spice, underbrush, ground herbs and assorted Mourvedre meatiness that’s balanced by beautiful black cherry and darker fruits. Medium to full-bodied, with juicy acidity and a fresh, focused feel, it will benefit from short term cellaring and have upwards of two decades of overall longevity. “

Domaine Servin Chablis

Domaine Servin, first imported to the U.S. in the 1940’s, is one of the oldest and largest estates in the region, with 32 hectares of vines spread throughout Chablis, much of it in top vineyards. The Servin family has been in the Chablis region since 1654 and involved in the wine industry for much of that time. Today, Francois Servin runs the domaine with the assistance of his Australian brother-in-law, Mark Cameron.

François, while appreciating the great traditions that are very important to the Servin family, has taken big steps to bring this domaine into the forefront of Chablis. He is resuming the practices of hand harvesting and replanting with top Chardonnay vines when necessary. The wines are aged in a mix of stainless steel and wood, depending on the cuvee, and bottled without filtration. With a long history in Chablis, Domaine Servin owns some great parcels through Chablis, including Grand and Premier Crus. Their largest un classified parcel, les Pargues, offered here today, was a premier cru vineyard before World War I, but fell into disuse after the war. When the reclassification was done, this stellar vineyard was left out of the premier cru list. Les Pargues has now been replanted and has resumed producing wine at premier cru level, a great bargain Chablis with classic finesse. 

Domaine Servin – Arriving August 15th

Domaine Servin Chablis Premiere Cuvee Les Pargues 2012 ($24.95) $21.90 special 
Wine Advocate 90-91 points
“The Servin 2012 Chablis Premier Cuvee Les Pargues – from a site of manifestly but never official cru quality and constituting, as usual, a selection of tanks from old vines to be bottled late and unfiltered for U.S. importer Peter Weygandt – leads with a fantastic nose that could only come from Chablis. Sweet-saline shrimp and lobster shell reductions vie for attention with Normandie Sydre-like apple and pear, migrating onto a lush, succulently-juicy palate and leading to a mouthwatering finish still full of mysterious crustacean appeal as well as marked by chalky and faintly acrid and metallic but undeniably invigorating notes. This should perform with distinction through at least 2017.”

Morin Sancerre

Gérard Morin took over the family’s 1½ hectares of vineyard about twenty years ago and his son, Pierre, after training in Australia and at Domaine Dujac, has been gradually eased into the front line and now runs the show. The estate has grown under the two men, now consisting of nine hectares, seven of sauvignon blanc and two of pinot noir planted on crus such as Les Châteaux and Crépon, amongst the finest and steepest of Bué. With their vines planted on the steep hard-calcaire amphitheatre of vineyards that surround the commune of Bué, three kilometres from Sancerre, Gérard and Pierre Morin’s Sancerre is typical of Bué: firmly structured and richly aromatic, it is generous and fruity in character, the quality of their site shows in the wine’s palate presence and mineral driven complexity. All vineyards are harvested by hand and yields are kept low through a spring de-budding (one of Pierre’s main changes). Fermentations are by parcel in an air-conditioned chai in enamelled steel vats with the finished wines left alone on their lees for as long as possible. For Chêne Marchand, Pierre Morin sources fruit from ‘Clos de la Chêne Marchand’, the best lieu-dit in the village Bué and one of the best in the whole of Sancerre, one of the oldest vine parcels used by Morin, the wines from Chene Marchand are noted for their complexity and intense mineral notes.

Morin Sancerre – Arriving August 15th

Girard & Pierre Morin Sancerre Chene Marchand 2011 ($29.95) $24 special 
Wine Advocate 91-92 points
 “From tank, Morin’s 2011 Sancerre Chene Marchand adds to juicy, fruitful abundance such as exhibited by the corresponding Vieilles Vignes a more active and differentiated impression of mineral impingement and a yet more tactile dimension to its zesty, vibrant finish. There is the same sense of buoyancy and refreshment here as well, while a streak of salinity engenders welcome salivation, complementing the wine’s luscious honeydew melon and tart apple-rhubarb melange. “This was brought in on the first of September,” remarks Morin, “and at only 12.5% potential alcohol. I’ve learned over the years that in this site if you wait just a little too long, the acidity drops very quickly.” This beauty promises to not only outperform most of those from its vintage but also to display greater stamina in bottle, quite likely for half a dozen or more years.”

There’s always more at VinopolisStock List – Chateauneuf du Pape – All Available Now

Chapoutier La Bernardine Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc 2010 ($69.95) $49 special 12+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 92 points
 “This ripe style displays a brioche frame to the Cavaillon melon, heather, peach and papaya notes, which all glide seamlessly through the full-bodied finish, where a stony hint keeps this honest.  56 cases imported”

Clos Des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape Blanc 2012 ($99.95) $79 special 1 bottle available
Robert Parker 94 points
 “Looking at Paul-Vincent’s Chateauneufs, and a rich, voluptuous example of this cuvee that possesses great acidity, the 2012 Chateauneuf-du-Pape Blanc offers up ripe stone fruits, white currants, honeysuckle and licorice to go with a full-bodied, rich and powerful profile on the palate that somehow stays beautifully fresh and focused. It’s a gorgeous wine that can be consumed in its fresh and vibrant youth, or cellared for a decade or two. It’s a knockout white that should not be missed! Drink now-2032.”

Beaucastel Chateauneuf Du Pape Blanc Vieilles Vignes 2011 ($199.95) $139 special 2 bottles available
Wine Spectator 96 points
 “Dense, with creamy layers of pear, apple, green plum and acacia honey all carried by well-embedded acidity. The long finish lets salted butter, chamomile and macadamia nut flavors unfurl nicely, but there’s still plenty in reserve for cellaring. Best from 2013 through 2020.”WS

Chateau Beaucastel Chateauneuf Du Pape 2011 375ML ($59.95) $49 special 3 half-bottles available
Wine Advocate 94 points
 “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. Drink 2015-2031.”

Beaurenard Chateauneuf du Pape Boisrenard 2009 ($79.95) $49 special 12+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 96 points 
“This powerful red offers a muscular core of roasted fig, blackberry and cassis fruit framed by thick, mesquite-tinged tannins, with loads of tobacco, pepper and tar coating the mouthwatering finish. Yet despite its power, this is racy and defined. Best from 2014 through 2024.”WS

Bosquet Des Papes Chateauneuf du Pape Chante Le Merle 2010 ($149.95) $119 special 12+ bottles available
Robert Parker 99 points
 “The 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape Chante Le Merle Vieilles Vignes is a blend of 85% Grenache and the rest equal parts Syrah and Mourvedre from the same parcels as the 2011. The wine is aged primarily in foudres with small percentages of the Syrah and Mourvedre kept in new 600-liter demi-muids. A spectacular effort, it displays a confit of camphor, blueberries, blackberries, black raspberries, lavender and other floral notes. This full-bodied, massive Chateauneuf du Pape is remarkably light on its feet despite what must be 15+% alcohol. Incredibly pure and remarkably intense, this is a tour de force from Nicolas Boiron. It should drink well for two decades.”

Charbonniere Chateauneuf du Pape Les Haute Brusquieres Cuvee 2011 ($59.95) $49 special 12 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points
 “Vivid ruby.  Powerful spice- and smoke-accented aromas of dark berries and cherry.  Shows very good clarity and lift to its black raspberry and floral pastille flavors, which gain weight with air.  Chewy tannins come on late and add grip to a powerful, incisive finish.”

Charbonniere Chateauneuf Cuvee Mourre des Perdrix 2011 ($59.95) $49 special 12+ bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points 
“Vivid red.  Spicy, mineral-driven aromas of red berries, spicecake and lavender show impressive purity and power.  A racy, sweet midweight that offers pliant strawberry and raspberry flavors, with zesty minerality adding lift and spine.  A floral quality builds with air and carries through a spicy, tannin-free finish.  Very elegant, in an almost pinot noir-like way.”

Charbonniere Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes 2011  ($59.95) $49 special 10 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 90-92 points
 “Bright purple.  Heady aromas of blackcurrant, mocha, pipe tobacco and incense.  Lush and expansive, with seamless, complex flavors of dark berries, candied flowers and spicecake.  A suave, accessible wine, finishing with supple tannins and impressive length.”

Clos Des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape 2005 ($179.95) $148 special 12+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 98 points
 “Really tight now, but packed with dark fig, currant, espresso, licorice and chocolate notes. Superfleshy but seriously structured, there’s layer after layer of sweet spice, fruit and minerality pumping through the finish, with lots of latent depth and power. Far more backward than the 2003 or 2004 on release, but since this red typically puts on weight as it ages, it should be a monster–à la the 1990–when it reaches its peak. Best from 2009 through 2030.”

Clos Des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape 2009 ($149.95) $89 special 12+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 96 points
 “Sinewy and reserved, with a light dusting of cocoa powder over the tangy damson plum, red licorice and cassis notes. The long, supple finish, with a lovely wafting note of Lapsang souchong tea, is packed with minerality and tight-grained tannins that will need time to fully evolve. One of the more backward 2009s, though this should pick up steam in the cellar. Best from 2013 through 2025.”

Clos Des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape 2011 ($149.95) $69 special 9 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points
 “I tasted the 2011 wine here in its four basic components, drawn from different foudres, followed by a sample of what Avril believes will be the final blend.  #1: 75% grenache, 15% syrah and 10% mourvedre;  intense, spice-accented red fruit aromas, with a sexy floral nuance and good back-end cut.  #2: 50% syrah, 45% grenache and 5% everything else; richer and more masculine, offering deep dark fruit flavors and a hint of bitter chocolate; more serious than the first component but less precise and graceful.  #3:  65% grenache and 35% syrah; graceful and silky in texture, offering vibrant red fruit and floral aromas and flavors.  Very fresh, in an intriguing, pinot-like way, with excellent cut and length.  #4:  65% grenache, 30% mourvedre and 5% syrah; emphatically spicy, with deep cherry and raspberry flavors and a hint of anise.  The spiciness builds with air and carries through impressively.  The final blend is bright ruby red with a heady bouquet of candied red fruits, potpourri and allspice, along with musky herb and mineral elements.  Sappy and precise, with vibrant black raspberry and cherry flavors given lift by zesty acidity.  Finishes clean and very long, with resonating floral and spice notes and harmonious tannins.”

Clos Du Caillou Chateauneuf du Pape Les Quartz 2009 ($109.95) $59 special 12+ bottles available
Robert Parker 94 points
 “The opaque ruby/purple-colored 2009 Chateauneuf du Pape Les Quartz is a blend of 85% Grenache and 15% Syrah from one of the appellation’s more obscure lieu-dits. This stunning 2009 offers copious floral notes intermixed with crushed rock, wet stone, kirsch and black currant characteristics.”

Clos Du Caillou Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve 2009 ($179.95) $109 special 11 bottles available
Robert Parker 94+ points
 “Intense, full-bodied and opulent, it is presently as rich, powerful and promising as their top luxury cuvee, the dense purple-colored 2009 Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve. The latter wine normally towers above the other two cuvees, but it is also more backward because 40% of the blend is split between Mourvedre and Syrah aged in new oak casks and the balance of 60% Grenache is aged in 600-liter demi-muids. Its deep purple color is followed by expansive, broad, sweet kirsch and black raspberry fruit notes intermixed with hints of licorice, graphite and spice box. Full-bodied with terrific purity as well as an attractive earthy, truffle, meaty character, it is much more evolved and forward than most vintages tend to be as this cuvee often needs 8-10 years of bottle age in the more tannic, backward years. However, that is not the case with this 2009 Reserve. It should drink well for 15+ years.”

Clos St Jean Chateauneuf du Pape Combe Des Fous 2010 ($249.95) $169 special 3 bottles available
Robert Parker 98 points 
“The limited production cuvee of 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape La Combe des Fous (60% Grenache, 20% Syrah, and the rest Muscardin, Vaccarese and Cinsault) is awesome. There have been many great vintages of this wine (2005, 2007, 2009 and 2011), but the 2010 flirts with perfection. One of the most complex aromatic expressions of Chateauneuf du Pape, it offers up notes of Christmas fruitcake, spring flowers, mulberries, blueberries, black raspberries, espresso beans and spice box. Full-bodied, opulent and voluptuously textured, its luxurious, lavish fruit conceals amazing levels of glycerin and alcohol. This wine possesses prodigious intensity, massive layers of fruit and an incredible 45-50-second finish. Forget it for 4-5 years, and drink it over the following 20-25 years.”

Cuvee du Vatican Chateauneuf Du Pape 2010 ($44.95) $36 special 9 bottles available
Wine Spectator 92 points
 “Very fleshy and succulent, with dark fig and linzer torte flavors that show anise and blackberry hints. Amble toasted spice and singed alder notes fill in on the finish, and this has a lovely silky feel despite its weight. Best from 2014 through 2026.”

Cuvee du Vatican Chateau Sixtine Chateauneuf du Pape 2011 ($59.95) $49 special 12+ bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 90-92 points 
“Bright purple.  Intensely perfumed red and dark berry aromas are complicated by subtle smoke and floral qualities.  Sweet raspberry and blackberry preserve flavors show impressive depth and pick up a licorice nuance with air.  Closes on an attractively sweet note, with excellent clarity and lingering smokiness.”

Fortia Chateauneuf Du Pape 2011 ($37.95) $29 special 5 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer
 “Bright violet color.  Wild aromas of blackberry, cherry pit, dried herbs and smoked meat.  Juicy and tightly wound, offering chewy dark fruit flavors that show a vaguely rude quality.  Dusty tannins add grip to a focused, smoky finish, which sustains the meaty note.”

Fortia Chateauneuf Du Pape Cuvee Baron 2011 ($39.95) $30.90 special 12+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 90 points
 “Offers a mix of kirsch, anise, plum sauce and cherry notes, with a polished feel through the cocoa-tinged finish. Shows the friendly, racy feel of the vintage. Drink now through 2021.”

Janasse Chateauneuf Du Pape Cuvee Chaupin 2010 ($149.95) $119 special 12+ bottles available
Robert Parker 98 points
 “The 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape Chaupin rivals the 2007 Chaupin (to date the best Chaupin I have yet tasted). Made from 100% Grenache (3/4 destemmed), it boasts a dense black/purple color as well as unbelievable notes of raspberries, black cherries, licorice, truffles, camphor, forest floor and garrigue. This wine is stunningly concentrated, incredibly noble, precise and expansive on the palate with mouth-saturating intensity, glycerin and extract. It is an amazing example of impeccably grown old vine Grenache translated into a natural yet full-throttle red.”

Le Vieux Donjon Chateauneuf Du Pape 2011 ($69.95) $59 special 12+ bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points
 “Deep ruby.  A wild, complex bouquet displays candied cherry, lavender, smoked meat and licorice.  Sappy and penetrating, offering sweet cherry and floral pastille flavors and a smoky nuance.  A note of bitter chocolate comes up with air and carries through a long, sappy finish.  In an old-school style and quite a bit more feral than recent vintages for this property, which will please long-time fans.”

Mas De Boislauzon Chateauneuf Du Pape 2010 ($49.95) $39 special 4 bottles available
Wine Spectator 93 points 
“This is dark but racy and driven, with a gorgeous Turkish coffee note giving way to flavors of roasted fig, blackberry paste and baker’s chocolate. Polished and seamless through the finish, with a tarry echo adding grip and length. Best from 2014 through 2027. – W.S.

Olivier Hillaire Chateauneuf du Pape Petits Pieds D’Armand 2011 ($119.95) $79 special 10 bottles available
Robert Parker 92-95 points
 “The ancient vine cuvee of 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape Les Petits Pieds d’Armand exhibits a dense ruby/purple color along with a big, sweet nose of kirsch liqueur, incense, black raspberries, bouquet garni and loamy soil undertones. Full-bodied with luscious fruit, this beauty should drink well for a decade. This tiny estate, which used to be part of the Domaine des Relagnes, produces two cuvees of Chateauneuf du Pape, the traditional cuvee from terroirs near Clos St.-Jean and Grand Pierre, and a 100% old vine Grenache offering called Les Petits Pieds d’Armand from ancient vines (nearly 110 years of age) planted in sandy soil. Besides making first-class wines, Olivier Hillaire is also the village’s top baker.”

Pegau Chateauneuf Du Pape Cuvee Reservee 2011 ($69.95) $44 special 4 bottles available
Robert Parker 93 points
 “Beautiful in the vintage, the 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape is a forward, perfumed example of the cuvee that has classic Pegau black fruits, tobacco leaf, pepper and leathery notes as well as medium to full-bodied richness and depth on the palate. Early-drinking by this estate’s standards, there’s nevertheless good mid-palate density and fine tannin. It should have 15 years or so of overall longevity.”

St Theodoric Chateauneuf Du Pape Guigasse 2011 ($59.95) $49 special 12+ bottles available
Wine Advocate 94 points
 ” Looking at the 2011s, both of which showed much better from bottle than barrel, the 2011 Chateauneuf-du-Pape La Guigasse (100% Grenache from sandy soils) has a Rayas-like perfume of sweet red cherries, currants, white pepper, spring flowers and underbrush. Fermented with 100% whole-cluster and aged all in neutral, larger barrels, this medium to full-bodied, dense and beautifully textured effort is superb now, yet should easily have 10-12 years of ultimate longevity. Drink now-2023..”

Usseglio Chateauneuf Du Pape Mon Aieul 2009 ($129.95) $99 special 1 bottle available

Usseglio Chateauneuf Du Pape Mon Aieul 2010 1.5 LITER ($249.95) $219 special 8 magnums available
Robert Parker 97 points “The 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee de Mon Aieul (cropped at 12-16 hectoliters per hectare) comes from the estate’s finest vineyards in the southern part of the appellation (Les Grandes Serres), the eastern sector (the famed La Crau) and the northern sector (Guigasse). The wine is aged primarily in stainless steel tanks with a small percent (less than 20%) kept in 600-liter demi-muids. Despite the 16.5% natural alcohol, there is not a trace of heat in this wine. It is stunningly concentrated with great intensity as well as classic blueberry, peppery, incense, camphor, fig and licorice characteristics. Rich and full-bodied with slightly more freshness than their profound 2007, the 2010 Mon Aieul should age effortlessly for two decades.”

Vaudieu Chateauneuf Du Pape 2008 ($49.95) $33 special 3 bottles available
Wine Spectator 93 points
 “Very fresh and racy, especially for the vintage, with mouthwatering mineral and shiso leaf notes pushed by bright minerality, all of which is then backed by a ripe core of crushed red and black cherry and currant fruit. The finish is long and silky. A very impressive turnaround has been made at this estate. Drink now through 2022”

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