Bottle Notes, Châteauneuf-du-Pape

1998 Vieux Télégraphe Châteauneuf-du-Pape – Bottle Notes

Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, in the Rhone Valley, was founded in 1898 by Hippolyte Brunier. Located on the highest terrace of the appellation, the domaine was named for an 18th century telegraph relay tower located nearby. Today the 173-acre domaine is run by Daniel and Frederic Brunier, the great grandsons of the founder. Vieux Télégraphe is one of the appellation’s most admired estates. The vineyards are planted to 65% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 15% Mourvedre and 5% Cinsault and other grapes.

Ruby red in color. 14% ABV. Gorgeous nose of red fruits, garrigue and leather. Medium body with exquisite acidity. Power and concentration that belies 25 years of bottle age. Kirsch, plums, roasted herbs and blood on the palate. The finish is long and seamless. The saying is that after 20 years there are no longer great vintages but just great bottles. Reports on this wine being past peak are premature. Well stored bottles will drink beautifully for another 3-5 years. I might wait even longer on the magnum in my cellar. For my money, the best Vieux Telegraphe ever made.

My rating: 98 points.

Look for the 2018 and 2019 in the $75-$90 range. I’ve bought both vintages.

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