Comprised of roughly 85% Grenache and the rest Syrah and other permitted varieties, aged all in foudre, the 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee da Capo is sheer perfection in a glass. Wine doesn't get any better. Incredibly rich and concentrated, yet ethereal and even graceful, it boasts off-the-hook aromas of blackberry, licorice, spice-box, smoked meats and underbrush that continue to change and develop in the glass. Massive and decadent on the palate, yet again, with no weight and a seamless texture, this brilliant effort needs a handful of years in the cellar and will live to see its 30th birthday in fine form. Drink 2016-2040.
This classic, benchmark estate for traditionally made wines is run by the talented, no-nonsense Laurence Feraud and her father Paul. While I struggle to think of a bad vintage here, 2010 certainly has to rank near the top of the heap and both the Cuvee Reservee and Cuvee da Capo are truly stunning, world-class efforts. 2011 is strong here as well, and should be consumed while you wait on the 2010s to come around. The 2012s are more in the style of the 2010s, with slightly more reserved aromatics, solid purity and beautifully fresh profiles. They too should be more accessible in their youth than the 2010s. A new development for this estate is the roughly 100+ new acres of Cotes du Rhone and Cotes du Rhone Villages that have been purchased just south of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, roughly 4 miles from the domaine. Formerly called Domaine de la Jouve, it lies just outside the town of Sorgues and borders the Rhone River on its western edge. Now called Chateau Pegau, the wines from here include a white Cotes du Rhone, the Cuvee Lone, a red Cotes du Rhone call Cuvee Maclure and a red Cotes du Rhone Villages called Cuvee Setier. Laurence's negociant label is call Selection Laurence Feraud and consists of purchased grapes from throughout the Southern Rhone. They always show traditional characters and can represent solid values.
Heady and loaded, but defined, with stunning depth and intensity to the pastis-soaked plum, blackberry and cherry fruit flavors, lined with brick dust, baker's chocolate, espresso and smoldering tobacco. Long and tarry through the finish, but lush and alluring at the same time. A backdrop of chestnut and cedar adds even more range and character. A huge wine with amazing balance. Best from 2015 through 2035.