Also slightly more mid-weight than I remember, yet still more than outstanding, the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee des Cadettes (39% Syrah, 37% Grenache, 22% Mourvedre and the rest assorted varieties, aged in new French oak) has classy notes of cassis, toast, vanilla bean and roasted meats. Possessing fabulous purity, medium to full-bodied richness and moderate overall depth and concentration, it can be enjoyed anytime over the coming decade. While this needs more flesh, it should still evolve gracefully on its overall balance. Drink: 2014 - 2024
The top wine of the estate, the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee des Cadettes is made first from a vineyard selection, followed by a cellar selection, and is produced only in top vintages (there was no 2011 produced). From tiny yields (one-third that of 2010 and only 400 cases made) and a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre that spent 12 months in 100% new barrels, it offers up smoking aromas of black raspberry, cassis, toast, roasted meats and hints of chocolate in a full-bodied, rich yet elegant package. Really gorgeous, with fine tannin and serious length, it should be reasonably approachable on release, but not hit its stride until 4-5 years after the vintage. Drink 2016-2032.