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2001 Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France

$109.99 USD $123.99 USD

Beaucastel has been on a terrific qualitative roll over the last four vintages, and the 2001 Chateauneuf du Pape (which Francois Perrin feels is similar to the 1990, although I don’t see that as of yet) is a 15,000-case blend of 30% Grenache, 30% Mourvedre, 10% Syrah, 10% Counoise, and the balance split among the other permitted varietals of the appellation. This inky/ruby/purple-colored cuvee offers a classic Beaucastel bouquet of new saddle leather, cigar smoke, roasted herbs, black truffles, underbrush, and blackberry as well as cherry fruit. It is a superb, earthy expression of this Mourvedre-dominated cuvee. Full-bodied and powerful, it will undoubtedly close down over the next several years, not to re-emerge for 7-8 years. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2025.

96 Points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

This has fleshed out nicely, beginning to show secondary notes, with mesquite, incense and black tea now emerging from the fleshy, bundled core of plum sauce, cassis and blackberry preserves flavors. A dark tarry note on the finish is offset nicely by a mouthwatering sanguine hint.—2001 Châteauneuf-du-Pape non-blind retrospective (November 2011). Drink now through 2021.

93 Points Wine Spectator