2005 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Pre-Arrival)
*Ranked #8 on the Top 100 Wines of 2008, Collectibles* Really dense and locked up now, this is packed with dark fig, currant and blackberry fruit shrouded by layers of tar, hot stone, bittersweet licorice and espresso. The long, dense finish has a great tug of iron buried within it. Best from 2011 through 2030.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Reminiscent of the 1995, the 2005 Chateauneuf du Pape is tight, structured and backward, with high acidity and tannin. Showing notes of blackcurrants, black raspberry, truffle, damp earth and cedar, with medium to full-bodied richness and depth, it needs another 3-5 years to reach the early stages of maturity, at which point it will hold for another decade or more. (JD)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Ruby-red. Blackberry and cassis on the nose, with a complex set of earth, herb and floral qualities adding complexity. Deep and sweet, with bitter cherry and candied licorice flavors and youthfully firm tannins but no hardness. Turns more lively on the finish, picking up a spicy red berry character and leaving a long, pungent herbal trail behind. This needs time. "It's the opposite of a bimbo wine," Perrin offered.
Wine & Spirits
An elegant Châteauneuf, this is as fresh as its fuchsia color predicts, with plenty of red raspberry flavor underlined by cocoa darkness. Rose hip and herbal notes keep it feeling bright and brisk. For roast game birds.
Fabulous aromas of sweet fruit, beginning of leather and then really meaty on the palate, seasoned with pepper and spice. Silky texture. Mouthwatering and elegant. Still so much more to come. 18/20 points. (JH)