2010 Cuvée du Vatican "Chateau Sixtine" Châteauneuf-du-Pape

SKU #1127732 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2010 Chateau Sixtine Chateauneuf du Pape performed exquisitely and, again, was one of the top wines of the vintage. With better integration of the new oak than I have previously seen from Jean-Marc Diffonty, this wine's opaque ruby/purple color possesses lots of licorice, asphalt, graphite, blackberry and kirsch notes as well as hints of lavender, forest floor and garrigue. This opulent, full-bodied effort is approachable, but it will not hit its full stride for another 2-4 years. It should drink well for 15-20 years thereafter. This is one of Chateauneuf du Pape's ancient estates (the recorded history dates back to 1673), long owned by the Diffonty family (presently by Jean-Marc). Their first Chateauneuf du Pape was sold under the estate name in 1902. Jean-Marc is an innovative visionary and when he took over for his father, he invested heavily in temperature-controlled stainless steel and used new oak for the first time. Some of his traditional clients balked at the new styled wines, so he offered a traditional cuvee under the name Cuvee du Vatican as well as his old vine, more modern-styled wine, Cuvee Sixtine. Now, things have changed again. Starting in 2010 there is only one estate wine, called Chateau Sixtine... This may be confusing for longtime customers, but the important fact to remember is that the main wine produced is the Chateau Sixtine. (RP)  (10/2012)

94 points Wine Spectator

 A dark, brawny style, with roasted apple wood and dark espresso framing the currant paste, blackberry pâte de fruit, melted black licorice and bittersweet cocoa notes. There's lots of muscle on the finish, but also lovely flickers of violet and pastis for nuance. Needs time to unwind fully. Best from 2015 through 2030. (JM)  (10/2012)

92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Opaque purple. Heady aromas of cherry-cola, blueberry, potpourri and sandalwood, with a spicy overtone. Deeply pitched dark fruit flavors are enlivened by juicy acidity and pick up notes of candied lavender and white pepper with air. Ripe and lively, finishing with outstanding energy, harmonious tannins and lingering sweetness. (JR)  (1/2013)

K&L Notes

This wine was previously called "Cuvée du Vatican Reserve Sixtine."

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Price: $59.99
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Rhone Blends



- 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.


- 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.
Specific Appellation:

Chateauneuf du Pape

Alcohol Content (%): 15.5