Châteauneuf du Pape: Le Vieux Donjon Rouge 2020
"The 2020 Châteauneuf Du Pape is another winner from this team, and readers can’t go wrong here. Based on 75% Grenache, 10% each of Syrah and Mourvedre, with the balance Cinsault, it was partially destemmed and brought up all in foudre. This beauty just about jumps out of the glass with its Provençal aromatics of ripe cherries, ground pepper, saddle leather, garrigue, and spice. These carry to a medium to full-bodied wine that has the vintage’s charming, pure character front and center, yet still brings good mid-palate density and ripe tannins. Buy a case, count yourself lucky, and enjoy bottles any time over the coming 10-15 years.
Drink 2022 - 2037. 95/100."
Jeb Dunnuck - JebDunnuck.com
Le Vieux Donjon make just one red wine and that is consistently excellent. Their celebrated single cuvée red Châteauneuf' is made from a core of 75% Grenache Noir along with 10% each of Syrah and Mourvèdre and 5% Cinsault. It has alluring garrigue berry scents and a sumptuous palate with a wealth of red fruit flavours over a background of ripe tannins and subtle, spicy undertones. It comes into its own at 3 to 5 years of age and good vintages will keep well for 2 decades or more.
|Style||Red Wine, Sec, Full-bodied, Non Sparkling|
|Wine Region||Rhône, Châteauneuf du Pape|
|Grape Variety (Cépage)||Cinsault, Grenache Noir, Mourvèdre, Syrah|
|Food & Wine Matching||Beef, Casserole, Mushrooms, Pheasant and Game|
|Cellarage||Drink 2022 to 2031.|
|Vinification||Low yields of ripe grapes are picked by hand from 80-year-old vines. They then undergo an alcoholic fermentation in cement vats for 18 to 21 days, followed by 2 months in cement tanks for a malolactic fermentation. The wine is left unfiltered and is bottled 18 months after the vendage.|
|Alcohol By Volume (%)||15|
Le Vieux Donjon
It might surprise some people to find that world-renowned domaine Le Vieux Donjon is a relatively new creation, having been founded after the marriage of Lucien and Marie José Michel in 1979, although these days it is run by their daughter Claire and son François. Despite their huge success, the modest Michel family go about their business with the minimum of fuss, producing just the one red and one white wine from 18 hectares of vines (some of which are over 80 years old) across 6 lieux-dits and eschewing the practice of fancy special cuvées.
"If seeking The Real Thing at Châteauneuf-du-Pape, where the Grenache is quite rightly seasoned with other varietal influences, and where the land is allowed to speak, I would highly recommend Le Vieux Donjon to anyone's cellar."
John Livingstone-Learmonth - drinkrhone.com
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