DOMAINE DE LA RONCIÈRE Chateauneuf du Pape
With aromas of gingerbread, red berries and a delicious leather perfume, full bodied with soft tannins and nice length on the palate, this powerful wine really brings out the flavour of red meats and cheeses.
Chateauneuf du Pape /sha toe NEUF doo PAP/
One of the most renowned appellations of the southern part of the Rhône Valley, Châteauneuf-du-Pape roughly translates to "The Pope's new castle" and, indeed, the history of this appellation is firmly entwined with papal history. The characteristic terroir of Châteauneuf-du-Pape comes from a layer of stones called galets ("pebbles"). The rocks are typically quartzite and remnants of Alpine glaciers that have been smoothed over millennia by the Rhône. The stone retains heat during the day and releases it at night which can have an effect of hastening the ripening of grapes. The stones can also serve as a protective layer to help retain moisture in the soil during the dry summer months. Châteauneuf-du-Pape is traditionally cited as allowing thirteen grape varieties to be used, but the 2009 version of the AOC rules in fact list eighteen varieties.
Region: Rhone, France
Varietal: 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 10% Mourvedre
90 points - Vinous
Managed using biodynamic farming methods since 2012, the Cotes du Rhone vineyards are located in Vaucluse, where the Mediterranean climate means hot summers and mild winters. The Mistral winds are a major feature of climate in the Vaucluse, as it is all up and down the Rhône Valley corridor.
The cool wind from the northeast blows fiercely here, with speeds exceeding 100 km/h and are a key factor in the health and quality of the vines and grapes of this unique region. Their cooling and drying effect discourages viruses and damp after a rainfall which helps to prevent fungal diseases.
Soil: Clay-limestone pebbles
Yield: 32 hl/ha
Age of Vines: 55 years
Vine-growing method: Sustainable farming. Traditional working of the soil. Fertilizer not used since 1994.
Harvesting: By hand, selective sorting.
Vinification: Traditional, entire bunches (non destalked grapes).
Fermentation: 21 days temperature controlled
Ageing: 12 months in stainless steel
Production: 3,000 cases