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2012 Xavier Vignon "Cuvée Anonyme" Châteauneuf-du-Pape

SKU #1311401 95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The top wine from the portfolio, the 2012 Châteauneuf du Pape Cuvee Anonyme offers thrilling purity and focus in its lively dark fruits, roasted meats and underbrush-scented bouquet. Full-bodied, ripe and textured, with fantastic polish and sweetness to its tannin, it has a supple, forward feel, yet will easily evolve for 10-15 years. This is another impressive lineup from oenolgist Xavier Vignon, who works with the likes of Raymond Usseglio, Le Nerthe, Marcoux and Grand Veneur, to name a few. These are all negociant wines, but they obviously have access to some serious vineyards, and the winemaking is impeccable. Looking at these latest releases, his 2013s buck the vintage stereotype with their ripe, textured profiles, and his 2012s are certainly up with some of the top wines of the vintage as well. In addition, prices remain more than reasonable here. If you haven’t yet discovered these wines, now is a great time. As a side note, I’m halfway through a case of his 2007 Châteauneuf du Pape, with every wine showing brilliantly. These can drink nicely in their youth, yet age beautifully as well. (JD)  (10/2014)

K&L Notes

Xavier Vignon. One of the finest winemakers you’ve never heard of. Xavier keeps a low profile, though he’s the mind behind a number of seriously high profile estates in Chateaneuf du Pape. Raymond Usseglio, La Gardine, Jerome Quiot, Beaurenard, La Nerthe, Mont Redon, Marcoux and Grand Veneur. That’s a few big-time names, right? So when it came time for Xavier and his partners to make their own signature Chateauneuf, you’d probably have a pretty good idea that the wine would be damn fine. Oh, yeah, it’s damn fine…and then some. Cuvée Anonyme. Named as such because if he told you where he got the fruit for this wine from, he’d have to kill you... And the guy likes to have some fun. Hey, wine is fun, right? His blends are thoughtful, innovative and the shot in the arm that the southern Rhone needs right now. Young talented vintner, fabulous vines served up on a silver platter, monster adoration from the press, we see a lot of parallels here with the Westside Paso posse (Saxum, Linne Calodo, etc.). The only exceptions being the vines are older, and the wines aren’t as pricey. Hmm…this is making a heckuva lot of sense right about now.


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Price: $39.99
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Staff Image By: Keith Mabry | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/28/2018 | Send Email
What a difference a few years makes. I tasted this wine about two years ago and it is was still a little tight but oh, is it coming along nicely nwo. The penetrating fruit has softened somewhat and more of the nuance and spices are beginning to shine through. As the overall profile comes into focus, this wine should hit its full stride in a couple more years but what a pleasure to drink now. Perfect for that mixed grill or perhaps some slow cooked brisket.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Rhone Blends

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.
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.
Specific Appellation:

Chateauneuf du Pape