2011 Le Vieux Donjon Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright ruby. A heady bouquet presents candied red fruits, garrigue, woodsmoke and cured meat, with an exotic Asian spice quality gaining strength with air. Sappy, penetrating and seamless, offering sweet, concentrated red and dark berry flavors and a touch of licorice. The smoke and spice notes come back strong on the clinging finish, which is framed by silky, nicely woven tannins. This already shows terrific complexity.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Looking at the reds and perfumed and beautifully Provencal, the 2011 Chateauneuf-du-Pape has rocking aromatics of kirsch liqueur, lavender, garrigue, licorice and saddle leather to go with a medium-bodied, supple and nicely textured profile. I-d like to see more mid-palate here, but this is all about up-front fruit. Filling in nicely with air (tasted twice from multiple bottles), it should be enjoyed over the coming 7-8 years. Drink now-2021. One of my favorite estates, these classic, textbook wines are made by talented Claire Michel, who has recently taken over the running of the estate from her parents.
A roasted juniper note leads the way for a core of steeped damson plum and blackberry fruit that's lined with accents of dust and tobacco, witha minerally finish. Pure, delivering an old-school feel. Drink now through 2026.