Stunning New 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape & Mourchon’s CnP Clone – 100% Grenache Reserve Bottling

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Last Fall in Chateauneuf du Pape I discovered a new bottling from this famous region produced by Domane Pigan. It was the 2010 and it was a stunning wine from the highly successful vintage. I immediately bought what I could and it has now arrived. Quantities are limited but I went ahead because I have been searching for great Chateauneuf du Pape for several years. I had found that the well know domaine bottlings were both spoken for and very expensive. But that is what the patient search is about: finding great value wines. If you love wines from this region think about this today.

First, the Southern Rhone has gone to the quality limit in 2010 with its best vintage in a dozen years:

Robert Parker rates the 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape vintage 97 Points, the best vintage since 2000. Wine Spectator says 2010 is more than outstanding rating the vintage 98 “… a late harvest stretching into October, resulting in beautifully ripe, racy, terroir-driven wines for aging. The spine of 2005 with extra flesh”

I think as all know the grapes in Chateauneuf du Papes can come from many grape varieties (in fact 13 different ones) but it is always lead by Grenache and usually followed by Syrah depending on the soil and vineyards.

As a companion to this high profile bottling I have a few new cases of Domaine Mourchon’s special 100% Grenache from 2011 as well. Our friend Scotsman Walter McKinlay purchased 40+ acres in Seguret in the Cotes du Rhone in 1998. By the 2005 vintage, Robert Parker was already calling Domaine de Mourchon “the best estate today in Seguret”. This is a tour de force in winemaking.

Many of you have been buying Walter ‘s wonderful Cotes Du Rhone Villages – Seguret Tradition & Grand Reserve bottlings for a few years. They are wonderful, prasied by all the wine reviewers and some of my personal favorites. I take a case of each every year.

Last year Walter was able to source some very limited finely produced grapes from this area near his estate in Seguret and produced a small production special bottling of 100% Grenache (the princpile grape from Chateauneuf du Papes) from his best plots and oldest vines. I only have a few cases of this wine.

Parker has a self-professed “crush on Chateauneuf du Pape,” to put it mildly. He makes a pretty powerful endorsement when he says that the “wine that I find myself turning to most often is Châteauneuf-du-Pape.”

Well he does have point. Chateauneuf du Pape offers immediate gratification both intellectual and hedonistic “Its wide array of aromas and flavors are reminiscent of a Provençal marketplace while its texture-rich and round, sumptuous and opulent-is virtually unmatched by most of the wines of the world.” Robert Parker

But the greatest appeal of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, beyond its food-friendly qualities, expansiveness, generosity of flavors and sumptuous texture, is the almost addictive attraction of its combined intellectual and hedonistic elements.” – Robert Parker

Here are the wines:

#1 DOMAINE PIGNAN CHATEAUNEUF du PAPES 2010 10 cases
6 bottles $249, 12 bottle case $479.88 ($39.99)
This is a wonderful price for high quality Cnp. It can easily reach to twice as much per bottle.
“As for the 2010s, the 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape possesses copious quantities of black raspberries, black cherries, pepper, roasted meats and loamy soil notes. Made from a blend similar to the 2011, it offers lots of glycerin, a full-bodied mouthfeel, an open-knit personality and a succulent, luxurious finish. Drink it over the next 10-12 years.

Created in 1989, Domaine de Pignan can trace its origins back to an estate called Domaine Antoine Pecoul, which was producing wines in Chateauneuf du Pape in 1855. From his nearly 37 acres of vines, proprietor Frederic Charvin (no relation to Laurent Charvin) has turned in the finest efforts I have yet tasted from Pignan.RATED 89 ” -R Parker

#2 DOMAINE DE MOURCHON FAMILY RESERVE “G” 2011 only 6 cases available
6 bottles $325, 12- bottle case $599.88 ($49.99)
This very limited cuvee comes from old vines near the village of Seguret, where the winery is located.” A step up, the 2011 Cotes du Rhone Villages Family Reserve is an awesome blend of 100% Grenache (from 60-year-old vines) that was aged all in demi-muid. Sporting a deep, semi-transparent ruby color, it delivers a stunning array of sweet black cherry, cassis, liquid flowers, Asian spices and rose petal to go with a medium to full-bodied, lively and beautifully proportioned profile on the palate. Ripe and textured, with beautiful focus and length, this thrilling Grenache should hit prime time in another 2-3 years and drink admirably through 2021. It’s a knockout effort in a less than ideal vintage. – Rated 92 Robert Parker

Don’t miss these delicous, ready to drink (and cellar worthy as well) bottlings.Margot Hurley, Cynthia Hurley French Wines