2004 Clos des Papes Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Pre-Arrival)
(Highly Recommended & #11 on the Top 100 of 2006) Amazingly refined, with a pure, silky current of raspberry ganache and cassis flavors that glides along supple tannins. Hints of mocha, mineral and garrigue check in on the long, pure finish. Has serious structure for the long haul. All about balance and finesse. Drink now through 2030.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2004 Clos des Papes Chateauneuf du Pape has turned out to be one of the finest wines of the vintage, tipping the scales at just over 15% alcohol and actually coming a few tenths of a degree within the 2003 and 2005 in terms of power and alcoholic degrees. The wine displays gorgeously sweet black raspberries, kirsch liqueur, and resiny, loamy soil notes. Medium to full-bodied, this blend of 65% Grenache, 20% Mourvedre, 10% Syrah, and the rest some of the other red varietals that are permitted, is performing beautifully and is certainly one of the vintage’s superstars. The wine is full-bodied, powerful, rich, and as accessible as the 2003, but slightly fresher and not as muscular and thick. Nevertheless, this is a top effort from the father and son team of Paul and Vincent Avril. This wine can be drunk now but can be cellared for 15-20 years.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Deep ruby. Pungent spice and floral notes accent bright red berry and cherry aromas. Deep, fleshy and sweet, with musky underbrush and garrigue adding complexity to the bright, intense red berry flavors. Very rich, in fact one of the more powerful wines of the vintage, with excellent depth and sweetness. The finish is chewy and strikingly long. Avril compares this one to 1995 in quality.