Being bottled the day of my visit, the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape checks in as a blend of 30% Mourvèdre, 30% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 10% Counoise, and the rest a mix of permitted varieties. It offers a ripe, sexy, rounded style that quickly shows more structure, minerality, and tannin with time in the glass. Blackberries, blueberries, smoked earth, violets, and garrigue all give way to a full-bodied, deep, structured Beaucastel that's going to benefit from 5-7 years of bottle age and keep for two decades. It reminds me of the 2001.
|Score: 96+||Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, August 2018|
Moving to the reds, I was able to taste all of the components of the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape and this will unquestionably be another terrific vintage from this estate. All of the samples had inky, purple colors, classic aromatics, good acidity and freshness, and balanced profiles. The Mourvèdre, in particular, was beautiful.
|Score: 94/97||Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, October 2017|
Ripe blackberry, summer fruits and white pepper come through on the rich and layered nose of this year's Beaucastel. The palate offers a typically dense and rich fruit core, slick and smooth with refined and ripe tannins. There is lots of pepperiness this year, with layers of savoury spice mingling in the background. A welcome freshness of acidity pulls the palate together, offering focus and length, as well as higher-toned and juicy yet fresh fruit power. Long, fine and refined on the finish, this is an excellent wine this great vintage. Marc Perrin told us that it reminds the family of the 2010 produced here and, more and more, the legendary 1990 - which is one of the finest vintages ever at this great estate.
|Score: 17.5||Farr Vintners, October 2017|
No surprise, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape takes the quality of the Coudoulet and ratchets it up a notch (or two!). I tasted the preliminary blend from foudre and was blown away by its potential. At 35% Mourvèdre, 25% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 10% Counoise, 5% Cinsault and 10% other permitted varieties, it shows amazing purity in its scents of dark fruit and licorice, richness and weight without any excess of alcohol and a finish that goes on and on.
|Score: 95/97||Joe Czerwinski, Wine Advocate (233), October 2017|
(barrels) dark red, black and purple tints. The nose has a soft, squeezy black berry fruiting, mulberry and raspberry in the second register – they provide a milder note. There’s a rather stylish sweetness, an implication of rosemary, herbs and lamb stock. There’s a good box of varied tricks to come. This is immediately enjoyable on the palate, is running with squelchy, wavy mixed berry fruits. The tannins are ripe and deep, and approachable, fleshy. This is Beaucastel in the more modern recent style. There is velvet wine within an actually firm casing; it has more foundation than the 2015. From 2021. 2038-40 Château de Beaucastel, Oct 2017 As an indication of the quality of the vintage right across the board, François Perrin showed me this 50 hl barrel of Counoise (1982) at 12.4°: **** red robe. Has a prominent spice-clove aroma with rose, musky tones, black pepper, real good clarity. The palate stretches out well, has a keen freshness, and beau red fruits, with nerve. It ends on fine red juice, is a serene wine. “The Counoise was abundant this year, and this is the opposite of an extraction wine,” François Perrin. Previously Oct 2017, London ***** (mixed barrels) bright, full red colour. The nose offers sweet, bosky, mixed herbs, hay airs, a discreet black cherry inside, also raspberry. It’s a gourmand, open arms start. Grenache leads it, and there is a stiff inner, indicating potential. The palate gives a full package of suave gras richness and coated tannins, all in a sphere. There is munchable content with the 2016 texture of smooth and sure depth, well-fitting tannins, and low-key freshness. It is more fleshy and over than in previous decades, but is tuneful and stylish. It may well close – don’t be deceived by its current flattery. From 2020-21. 2036-39 Oct 2017
| ||John Livingstone-Learmonth, drinkrhone.com, November 2017|
This is a stunning Beaucastel. A classic! Has a superb array of fruit, ranging from red, through to blue, darker purple and black. Nuances of dark, stony minerals, spices, wild flowers and herbs. So fleshy. This has impeccable balance, super-silky tannins and an extraordinarily long finish. This has decades ahead of it. Drink or hold.
|Score: 99||Nick Stock, JamesSuckling.com, August 2018|