Cellar Management

Pick My Next Bottle – 2007 Châteauneuf-du-Pape

The May installment of Pick My Next Bottle focuses on Châteauneuf-du-Pape from the the 2007 vintage. The purpose of this series is to provide insight into specific wines or producers you may currently have in your cellar. The winning bottle will be opened on Saturday and a Bottle Note will be published the following week.

Robert Parker of the Wine Advocate rated the ’07 vintage in Châteauneuf-du-Pape 98 points. “This is the greatest vintage I’ve ever tasted in the southern Rhone” exclaimed Parker. The vintage was warmer than normal in Châteauneuf-du-Pape but cool nightime temperatures allowed the wines to maintain a unique freshness. Many though, criticize the hype bestowed on the vintage by Parker and think it has more to do with his taste for hedonistic wines.

I do think these wines have come around in recent years and I am definitely warming up to the vintage. As always it is good to check in on your favorite producers from time to time.

The Contenders

  • 2007 Domaine du Pégaü “Cuvée Réservée” – The 2007 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Reservee is a brilliant effort that ranks alongside the colossal 2003 Cuvee Reservee. A blend of approximately 85% Grenache, 8-9% Syrah, and the rest Mourvedre and other varietals from 50-100+ year old vines aged in foudre, it exhibits a dense plum/purple color along with a big, sweet bouquet of beef blood, grilled herbs, barbecue smoke, lavender, sweet cassis and kirsch and a hint of Asian soy. The wine possesses a fabulous texture, a full-bodied mouthfeel and a seamless integration of tannin, acidity and alcohol. Certainly the alcohol level is pushing 16% in this wine. With extraordinary texture and unctuosity, this remarkable effort should drink well for 20+ years yet be very appealing in its youth given the glycerin, velvety texture, and remarkable complexity. (08/2010) 95 points from the Wine Advocate.
  • 2007 Domaine de la Janasse Chaupin – I’ve drunk over a case of the 2007 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvée Chaupin from my cellar, and this was easily one of the finest bottles (it was from magnum) I’ve ever had. Made from close to 100% Grenache and brought up in foudre, it’s a crazy good, monumental beauty that offers loads of ripe blackberries, black raspberries, crushed flowers and garrigue aromas and flavors. Concentrated, layered and unctuous, with a to-die-for texture, no hard edges and a huge finish, this beauty is still youthful and is just now starting to show hints of maturity. When it’s this good, I can’t recommend waiting, but I’ve no doubt this will continue to offer this level of quality for at least another decade. (02/17)  99 points from the Wine Advocate.
  • 2007 Le Vieux Donjon – Still backward and unevolved, the 2007 Chateauneuf du Pape (75% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 10% Mourvedre, and 5% other authorized varietals) was aged completely in foudre. Its deep ruby/purple color is followed by a reticent, but burgeoning bouquet of black cherries, plums, black currants, garrigue, lavender, and licorice. One can sense the weight, power, and richness in the mouth, but the tannins are there, and the wine also has very good acids. Consequently, patience will be required, and this is one 2007 where 2-3 years of bottle age is warranted. The wine is capable of lasting 15-20+ years. This pure, deep, full-bodied 2007 is the finest Chateauneuf du Pape Vieux Donjon has made since their sensational 1998 and 1990. (10/09) 96 points from the Wine Advocate.

Which 2007 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Should I Open

  • 2007 Domaine de la Janasse Chaupin (44%, 7 Votes)
  • 2007 Domaine du Pégaü Cuvée Réservée (31%, 5 Votes)
  • 2007 Le Vieux Donjon (25%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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Thanks for voting! I’d love to see a comment below on why you picked one bottle over another and hit me up with some suggestions for the June version of Pick My Next Bottle.

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