Opened two (then three) '98 Chateauneuf's for a nice roasted chicken dinner at home with the wife and all the boys. This and Vieux Telegraph disappointing so I had to open a third (and the best) -- Beaucastel.
Color: light ruby core -> diffuse garnet rim. Somewhat muted nose of plums, stewed fruit and a little CDP spice. Detected a note of oxidation that unfortunately followed through on the palate. Stewed fruit and licorice with a velvety texture, I just can't get past the oxidation; this tastes like a wine that has been opened and left out on the counter for 2-3 days. There seems to be a large number of people with my experience of this wine (which I bought from a reputable dealer on release); either it's amazing juice or toast. Tonight, mine was toast. Not rated.
Still super sweet, concentrated and tannic after 17 years. If one likes this style, I can see how it could be rated higher, but while a well-made wine, this one lacks depth in my opinion. I'll save my remaining bottles for at least a few years.
Drank at Home The joys of trying a second bottle. There is a lot of barnyard on the nose of this wine that takes a while in Decanter to blow off. Put then it really sings of true old vine CNDP with an amazing complexity. You just keep having to go back this wine to see how it evolves. Amazing stuff and if you have the right bottle it really sings. Traditional winemaking is evident here.
Roberto 50 (Søllerød Kro): Served from magnum, brought from my cellar vis-a-vis the 1998 Clos des Papes, this was a grave disappointment; while full bodied and rich, this one totally lost out to the elegant sibling, it seems heated and overdone. Could have been a somewhat off bottle - or just the Janasse-style fallen apart
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(Domaine de la Janasse Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes) Opaque dark red violet color with pale meniscus; lovely, rich plum, cherry, black fruit, clove, sexy nose; ery tasty, plum, black fruit, charcoal, mineral and cherry palate; medium-plus finish
(Domaine de la Janasse Châteauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes) A darkly coloured wine, with an early maturing hue. Unlike some of the preceding wines the nose here has a freshness at its core, although there is no doubting that it also has plenty of ripe characteristics; there are baked cherries, roasted game meats, The palate starts off elegantly, although it displays more substance through the midpalate; it is always weighty and full, with piles of character. Alongside the dense, macerated, baked fruit and roasted, animalistic notes there is a structure, a seam of ripe tannins, a grippiness. But there are little angular notes too, a well-hidden chalkiness, but these are minor elements. As I commented previously, this has a very brawny style and it will be fascinating to see how this does in the cellar. I don't mind having a few more bottles in order to do just that. Perhaps of interest is the fact that I kept a little back and retasted after 24 hours, when it showed much more freshness and purity. It would be fine by me if this sort of transformation could be mimicked in the cellar!
(Domaine de la Janasse Châteauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes) An attractive and rich hue, showing a little maturity but still with a lot of depth and red pigment at the core, leaving a fairly substantial coating of sediment in the bottle. The nose is really full of interest, showing firstly the fur and animal aspects that characterise the wines of the appellation, but then also aromas of sweet, roasted, honey-coated meats, bacon and baked cherries, before coming round full circle to a more savage, animal-skin character. There are also little notes of cream, blueberry and vanilla. Lots of substance on the palate, creamy and yet also a little brawny, as this wine is still carrying a lot of structure today. Good richness through the midpalate, seamless and yet not showing lots of elegance yet, the wine still has a lot of grip and stuffing to shed before we see that I think. But it is wonderful to drink now, especially with suitable food. Excellent, and certainly one of the better wines of the tasting.
(Domaine de la Janasse Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes) Lovely ripe strawberry and red fruit nose with a caramel note; good ripe juicy red fruit, with sous bois undertones, ready for drinking; medium-plus finish
(Janasse V.V) served out of magnum, which was the equivalent of a sledgehammer when a seven year-old, 1998 Chateauneuf du Pape is in it. The nose was heavenly and full of sexy, red fruits: strawberry, raspberry, red currant and red berry, along with tannins, alcohol, spice and leather. It was especially intense out of magnum, I.m sure. The earth and game were intertwined and buried amongst each other, and the palate was great . spicy, hot and long yet smooth, with red fruits and supplemental earth and leather to the rich fruit
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