PJs has just received the first drop of our 2015 Chateauneuf-du-Papes from orders we placed back in March.
Two consistent performers and house favorites are here - 2015 Tradition from Domaine Giraud and 2015 Cuvee Reservee from Roger Sabon - both Eric Solomon imports and both are Chateauneuf-du-Papes that have finesse in their arsenal.
The 2015 vintage in the Southern Rhone has everyone talking as it seems to combine the stylistic elements of the 2009 and 2010 vintages - see below Josh Raynolds’ take on the 2015 vintage at the bottom of this article…
George Feaver - Wine Director
Both of the above wines earned 91-93 points in Vinous Media and the Sabon got 93-95 from Jeb Dunnuck of Wine Advocate...
Made from 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, the 2015 Châteauneuf du Pape Réserve comes from two terroirs: la Crau and la Grenade. It’s aged 60% in foudre and the rest in larger oak tanks. Elegant, medium to full-bodied, with ripe tannic structure, it has lots of scorched earth, darker berry fruits, smoked herbs and licorice aromas and flavors. It’s not a massive wine, but it shines for its purity and length.
Bright ruby. Intense cherry and red berry aromas pick up notes of incense, anise and lavender with aeration. Spicy, concentrated and focused on the palate, offering appealingly sweet raspberry, cherry liqueur and floral pastille flavors underscored by a vein of juicy acidity. Closes sweet and quite long, with harmonious tannins building slowly and folding into the juicy fruit.
While the 2015s are definitely on the rich side, they’re much more in the style of the 2009s than the superripe 2007s or the frequently roasted 2003s. Broadly speaking, I view 2015 as a cross between the richness of 2009 and the energy and structure of 2010, with the overall personality of the wines leaning closer to ’09 than to ’10. The best examples show serious depth along with very good definition and back-end vivacity, and little in the way of cooked-fruit character. The wines have generally begun their lives with a more pleasing balance of mid-palate fruit and tannins than the sterner 2005s or even the 2010s, which should allow them to be enjoyable relatively young. At their best – and there are many high points in 2015 – the wines exhibit the classic richness of the region allied to freshness, which will make them appealing to a wide range of Châteauneuf lovers, from those with cool, deep cellars who can be patient to readers with itchy corkscrews and/or a lack of long-term storage options.
Josh Raynolds - Vinous Media Mar 2017