2012 Domaine Pierre Usseglio "Mon Aïeul" Châteauneuf-du-Pape (1.5L)

SKU #1303593 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Usseglio's 2012 Châteauneuf du Pape Cuvee du Mon Aieul is a beautiful wine that comes mostly from three terroirs: Les Grand Serres (96-year-old vines) in the south, la Crau (78-year-old vines) in the eastern portion of the appellation, and La Guigasse (75-year-old vines), which is roughly in the middle/north central portion of the appellation near Rayas and Pignan. Coming from 100% Grenache and miniscule yields of 22 hectoliters per hectare (which is basically nothing), it offers gorgeous black raspberry, black cherry, herbes de Provence, pepper and Asian spice to go with a medium to full-bodied, silky, refined and elegant style on the palate. It's loaded with character, and while there's no Reserve cuvee in the vintage, this is terrific. Drink bottles through 2027. (JD)  (10/2014)

92-94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Opaque ruby. Black raspberry, Indian spices and licorice on the highly perfumed nose, with a sexy floral overtone gaining strength with air. Red and dark berry preserve flavors show excellent depth and sweetness, along with an assertive spiciness. Supple tannins build on a finish that accentuates the floral and berry notes.  (1/2014)

94 points Wine Spectator

 This delivers a juicy, brambly core of dark plum, macerated currant, fig and tobacco flavors, with notes of chestnut, singed alder and bittersweet cocoa. Warm stone and tar details underscore the finish. Shows ample range, energy and character. Best from 2016 through 2030.  (9/2014)

93 points Vinous

 Deep ruby. Pungent aromas of fresh raspberry, cola, floral pastilles and smoky minerals. Silky, sweet and concentrated, showing a supple texture to its sappy black raspberry and candied lavender flavors. A spicy quality contributes lift and bite but this is all about sappy, pure fruit at this stage. Luscious and seamless in texture, finishing with noteworthy punch, echoing florality and supple, late-arriving tannins that meld smoothly with the wine's sweet fruit. (JR)  (4/2015)

Jancis Robinson

 Vineyard soil: galets, sand, clay-limestone. Lieu-dit: Serres, La Crau, Guigasse. 100% Grenache. 90% concrete cuve, 10% demi-muid. Mid crimson. A hint of overripeness on the nose -- very sweet on the palate, almost sticky! Very dramatic and would need careful food matching with all that sweetness and alcohol. 17/20 points. Drink 2020-2032.  (12/2013)

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Price: $149.99

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Varietal:

Grenache

- Fat, ripe and rich with ample fruit and vibrant acidity, wines made from Grenache are easy to love. While its origins are still under dispute - some suggest Spain, where it is called Garnacha, while others say it came first from Sardinia, where it is called Cannonau - it is inarguably one of the most planted varietals in the world. A hearty grape, Grenache does well in hot, dry regions and its sturdy stalk also makes it well-suited to withstand blustery conditions like the Provençal Mistral. It ripens at relatively high sugar levels, which translates to higher potential alcohol in the wines it produces. Grenache may be most famous in the Southern Rhône areas such as Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Gigondas where it has long been an important component of delicious blends. But it's also the source of the crisp rosés from Tavel, Lirac and Provence, and age-worthy vins doux naturels like Rivsaltes and Banyuls. Grenache is also found in large swaths of northeastern Spain, in Navarre, in Rioja, where it plays a supporting role in blends with Tempranillo, and in the distinctive wines of Priorat. The grape was once the most widely planted varietal in Australia, though Shiraz and Cabernet have overtaken it. In California, Grenache plantings have dwindled from their heyday in the San Joaquin Valley, but it is starting to see a resurgence, albeit in smaller plantings, where other Rhône varietals thrive.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Rhone

- Legendary wine-producing region in southeast France. Stereotypically speaking, Rhone wines are high in alcohol, and the majority produced is red. The northern Rhone is best known for outstanding 100% Syrah wines from areas such as Cote Rotie and Hermitage, as well as for fabulous white wines from Condrieu (where Viognier is king). In the southern Rhone, look for spicy, full-bodied wines that are blends of Grenache, Syrah, and other varietals coming from appellations such as Chateauneuf du Pape, Gigondas, or Rasteau. Wines labeled as Cote du Rhone or Cotes du Rhone Village (a cut above generic Cotes du Rhone) are frequently found here in the US because they often represent some of the best values on the market. View our bestselling Rhone Valley wines.
Specific Appellation:

Chateauneuf du Pape