1998 Domaine Santa Duc "Prestige des Hautes Garrigues" Gigondas
Gorgeous ripeness and exotic smoke, plum and blackberry flavors melt together in a full-bodied, creamy-textured package. Massive tannins are ripe but should close down the wine for a while, so age a few years or decant before serving.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 1998 Gigondas Prestige des Hautes Garrigues achieved 15.64% alcohol, but the 1998 Mourvedre battered all records as it came in at a whopping 15.8% natural alcohol. Of course, this wine would not merit its high score if it did not completely hide the lusty alcohol. One of the advantages of low yielding, concentrated Grenache is that it easily hides high alcohol. This full-bodied black beauty offers a terrific bouquet of licorice, blackberry, cassis liqueur, and a smoky, subtle dose of wood in the background. In the mouth, it is enormously endowed, very full-bodied and textured, exceptionally pure, with a creamy mid-palate, silky tannin, and a profound finish. Anticipated maturity: 2003-2018.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Full ruby-red, brighter than the cuvee classique. Liqueur-like aromas of kirsch, blackcurrant, dark chocolate and exotic wood notes. Sappy, sweet, and port-like on the palate; huge and thick. A wine with near-solid density. Finishes with palate-drenching but sweet tannins. The raw material here-with near-16% potential alcohol (the bottled wine is 15.6%)-calls to mind Bonneau Cuvee Speciale. 93(+?) points