Join us as we turn our tastes to the region of the delicious Rhone Valley. Many people focus on Bordeaux for wines of longevity but the robust wines from the North and Southern Rhone can be excellent contenders for maturity too especially with a high proportion of Syrah used in the wines. We held this tasting in June 2012 and it was regarded as one of our best ever!
Chateau de Beaucastel
"Beaucastel is regarded by many as one of the top estates, if not the top estate, of Châteauneuf du Pape" (Wine Doctor)
Chateau de Beaucastel has been run by several viticultural generations of the Perrin family, beginning with the late Jacques Perrin (who died in 1978), then the brothers Jean-Pierre and Francois, and now their sons Thomas, Marc, Pierre, and Mathieu. When the name Perrin adorns the label this is a classic guarantee of quality from an impressive portfolio of wines; from the extraordinary great value for money styles, to the top-end world classics, including a sizeable operation under the Perrin et Fils label, such as Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Beaucastel was one of the very first domaines to practise organic viticulture - namely no use of herbicides, insecticides or any other chemicals. Unusually, all 13 permitted grape varieties are grown although it is Mourvèdre which is Beaucastel's signature grape, often making up a third of the final blend.
Beaucastel is renowned for its controversial vinification "á chaud" which involves rapidly heating the incoming grapes, which extracts colour and aroma and kills harmful bacteria. Beaucastel's wines are matured in 500-litre oak casks and, after blending, are bottled with a light fining and without being filtered.
Wines on Tasting (9):
White - 2007 Vieilles Vignes Blanc (100% Roussanne) - 97 RP (£110)1990 - 96 RP, 94.5 CT (£150)1994 - 87 WS, 90.3 CT (£40)1995 - 95 WS, 91.2 CT (£65)1997 - 87 WS, 89.2 CT (£55)1999 - 90 WS, 90.5 CT (£50)2001 - 96 RP, 92.5 CT (£65)2003 - 92 RP, 91 CT (£65)2005 - 94 RP, 96 WS, 92 CT (£75)RP - Robert Parker (& his team) - leading American critic
WS - Wine Spectator - leading American publication
CT - average score from Cellartracker.com (including all recent tastings)