13th of 24 and best bottle yet, opened 30 minutes but not decanted - medium deep red, some lightening on rim; fruit driven on nose initially, classic "sweaty saddle" notes evolved towards end of bottle; medium full bodied with usual exquisite class, balance and grip of Beaucastel, more fruit driven than normal, should still improve over next 10 years on a par with the 2000 but slightly behind the 98 and 2001. Fine plus (18/20).
Maturing color. The nose shows lush fruit, spice, garrigue and a hint of flowers. This is medium full bodied on the palate with ok concentration and decent finesse. It seems a bit past its best and the tannins are somewhat gritty. The medium length finish is a bit rustic. Totally integrated.
Brought this to RPM Steak, decanted for 60 mins (magnum format). Still bright and fresh, classic nose with a little of that mourvedre dark richness. Great bottle and these will easily go another 10 years.
It's now 6 years ago I opened the first bottle from a case I bought, and the second bottle is lovely. A nose of baked, brown fruits and gentle light red berries and a wonderfully well contained palate where the brown fruit is showing through again along with lavender and Christmas spices. A very elegant Beaucastel and indeed quite clean compared to bottles from the early 90s but very compelling and ready for prime drinking. Very happy to have 10 bottles left.
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(Chateau de Beaucastel Châteauneuf du Pape) More than two years now since I last tasted this wine, and this is still a very good and youthful hue, cherry red with a fading rim, testament I would think to the large proportion of Mourvèdre the Perrins use in their blend. A lovely, savage, meaty, bright but chewy cherry character. There is meat stock and roast beef, with a touch of balsamic and liquorice, slight high-toned but nothing remotely acetic or volatile. Nice cool entry, but with immediately apparent creamy texture and lots of tangible substance. Very broad, good acid at the core, lots of density, some good grip provided by ripe and substantial tannins at the end. This vintage of Beaucastel has surprised me before; a 'fresher' vintage, this is remarkable meaty and dense, with great length. This has decades ahead of it, I just hope I have enough bottles left in the cellar.
(Chateau de Beaucastel Châteauneuf du Pape) This wine has a dense and youthful hue, with a very dark core, and a youthful red rim. The nose has a good complexity, and is quite feral and savage, alongside notes of meaty, cherry fruit. The palate is rich, full and deep, with a dense and grippy character, more so than I would have expected taking into account this is regarded as one of the fresher of recent vintages. There is plenty of texture and substance, and a firm acidity to balance it out. This is quite fine.
(Chateau de Beaucastel Châteauneuf du Pape) From a half bottle. The colour here is a little less dense and impressive than the preceding wine. It looks a little more youthful though. There is plenty of Mourvèdre character on the nose, with a sweet cured meat note alongside dense, macerated fruit. Fabulous! There is concentration on the palate, but immediately apparent elegance as well. Macerated Mourvèdre fruit, beautifully balanced, and a very fluid, feather-light glide across the palate. Real finesse here. Brilliant. Needs four or five years.
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