2010 Domaine Grand Veneur "Vieilles Vignes" Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A monumental effort meriting a perfect score, the super-rich 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes is a 4,000-bottle blend of 50% Grenache, 40% Mourvedre and 10% Syrah from 55- to 105-year-old vines and was aged for 18 months in small oak. The wine offers majestic blackberry and cassis fruit intermixed with kirsch, licorice and subtle Provencal herbs in the background. It is akin to chewing meat in the mouth given its viscosity and thickness. This utterly amazing wine comes close to being over the top, but it pulls back just in time. A massive Chateauneuf du Pape (even for a 2010), it needs 5-6 years of cellaring and should age effortlessly for 25-30 years. Bravo! (RP)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Opaque purple. Deeply pitched aromas of dark berry liqueur, cherry-cola, lavender and vanilla, with a spicy topnote. Fleshy, palate-staining blueberry and cassis flavors are lifted by juicy acidity and pick up a smoky quality with air. Supple and expansive on the endless finish, which strongly echoes the dark fruit and vanilla notes.
Ripe and packed, but well-focused, with a broad beam of linzer torte and boysenberry fruit backed by graphite, violet and pastis notes. Picks up plenty of muscle and toasted spice on the finish, showing lots of latent depth in reserve. Very solid. Best from 2014 through 2024. 250 cases made.
Additional commentary from Robert Parker: "Credit Christophe and Sebastian Jaume for making this one of the most impeccably run estates in the Rhone Valley. To reiterate, this is an estate at the top of its game and the wines remain fairly priced as well. The 2010 Grand Veneur Chateauneuf du Papes reveal youthful, crisper, more focused styles than their 2009 counterparts. I suspect their pHs are lower, the total acids slightly higher, and the alcohols perhaps .5 to 1% lower across the board." (10/2011) 15% abv.