2011 Raymond Usseglio "Cuvée Impériale, Vignes Centenaires" Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A gorgeous wine in the vintage, the 2011 Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Imperiale Vignes Centenaire comes from 100+-year-old vines and is a field blend of almost all Grenache. Aged completely in concrete tank, it offers a sweet bouquet of black cherry liqueur, blackberry, roasted herbs, melted licorice and smoked earth to go with a voluptuous, up-front and fruit-loaded profile on the palate. While a fair step back from the incredible 2010, it’s a gorgeous, full-bodied and beautifully balanced effort that will drink well through 2026. Drink 2014-2026. Covering 45 acres (37 in red and the rest planted to white varieties) spread throughout Chateauneuf du Pape, this top-notch estate has been run by Raymond Usseglio’s son, Stephane, since 2004, with consulting help from Xavier Vignon. These wines are consistently outstanding and warrant serious attention. (JD)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Deep ruby. Pungent, smoke-accented aromas of dark berry preserves, licorice, garrigue and minerals. Rich but lively on the palate, offering sweet black and blue fruit flavors and notes of lavender and black tea. Shows excellent clarity and lift on the finish, which features supple tannins and a late jolt of white pepper
A lush, rounded, fleshy style, with delightful plum jam, blackberry paste and raspberry ganache flavors that are well-defined. The finish sports solid grip, with dark licorice and bittersweet cocoa notes inlaid seamlessly. Should cellar well. Best from 2015 through 2024.
96% Grenache, 4% 'other' grape varieties. Very dark blackish crimson. Headily potent with some floral notes. Very smooth and polished. Firm with sufficient ripe fruit for the acidity. No excess alcohol nor tannin. One of the more muscular examples. It’s not playing the intense ripe fruit card. 17/20 points. Drink 2016 to 2026.