1988 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Pre-Arrival)
Elegant and understated, with lovely fruit and structure. Has an excellent deep color, with focused black cherry and refined spice aromas, a full body of refined tannins and spice and berry flavors. Needs time to develop.--Châteauneuf-du-Pape retrospective. Best from 1993 through 1995.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 1988 is firmly structured and elegant, with sweet, sweaty horse/old leather notes that may or may not be brett. Medium-bodied, earthy, firm, and vigorous, my instincts suggest it has reached full maturity, but I suspect it will always remain a firm, muscular example of Beaucastel without the charm, depth, and intensity of either the 1989 or 1990. In many ways it behaves along the lines of the 1995.