2012 Bosquet des Papes "Chante le Merle Vieilles Vignes" Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Pre-Arrival)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A remarkable effort, the blockbuster 2012 Châteauneuf du Pape Chante le Merle Vieilles Vignes comes close to the 2010 in terms of quality. Coming from a selection of the top plots and old vines of the estate, co-fermented, and with no destemming, it offers off-the-charts notes of cassis, chocolate-covered cherries, garrigue, licorice and toasted spice. Possessing massive richness and depth, with tons of glycerin, texture and length, it stays remarkably elegant, balanced and pure on the palate, with building tannin and yet no hard edges. This knockout Châteauneuf will have two decades of longevity and should not be missed!
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(made with whole clusters): Deep ruby. Complex bouquet of ripe cherry, blood orange, succulent herbs and potpourri. Nicely concentrated and sappy, with cherry and bitter rhubarb flavors gaining sweetness with air. Finishes with powerful thrust, good grip and fine-grained tannins, leaving a sexy floral pastille note behind.
Opaque ruby. Ripe, expansive blackberry and cherry scents are lifted and sharpened by peppery spices and smoky minerals. Juicy and broad on the palate, offering sweet dark fruit and floral pastille flavors that display unlikely energy and lift for their density. The smooth, sweet, smoky finish is framed by velvety, harmonious tannins. The label here reads 15.5% alcohol but I don't detect any undue heat.
85% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 5% Mourvèdre. According to Wine Advocate: "An estate that seems to have found another level, quality-wise, Domaine du Bosquet des Papes has been run by the Boiron family for the past six generations. Located in the northern part of the appellation, the wines are now made by the talented Nicolas Boiron and offer classic, Provencal characters that scream Southern Rhone, yet also show beautiful polish and poise. His 2010s were the best wines I’ve tasted from the estate, and these 2011s and 2012s are not far behind. They are all noteworthy and worth tracking down." (10/2013, JD)