Among the prominent people in the town of Courthezon during the sixteenth century was the Beaucastel family. In 1549, “Noble Pierre de Beaucastel” bought “a barn with its land holdings, containing 25 saumées at Coudoulet”. More than four centuries later, this remarkable domaine, known today at Château de Beaucastel, is producing what most people acknowledge to be the finest wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In 1903, a young chemical engineer and mathematics professor named Pierre Perrin, together with his father-in-law, began to restore the domaine following the ravages of phylloxera. His son, Jacques Perrin, took over the domaine in 1953 and introduced many innovations such as improved grape varietals, integrated pest control, and a flash-heat exchanger. Today, the third and fourth generations of Perrins, François and Jean-Pierre and Jean-Pierre’s sons Pierre, Marc and Thomas, continue in the tradition of their father and grandfather.
The vineyards of Beaucastel are treated as a garden: no chemical fertilizer, no chemical week killers or sprays are permitted. Organic fertilizer comes from compost and only a minimum of traditional sulphur-copper spray is used in the vineyards. The vineyard is planted in all the traditional grapes of Châteauneuf-du-Pape: Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah, Cinsault, Vaccarese, Counoise, Terret Noir, Muscardin, Clairette, Picpoul, Picardin, Bourboulenc, and Roussanne.
Juicy up front, with lively star fruit, peach and yellow apple fruit, this turns plush and languid, with alluring grilled hazelnut, sweetened butter and warm piecrust notes filling in on the finish. Sneakily long, thanks to the nicely integrated acidity. Roussanne, Grenache Blanc, Picardan, Clairette and Bourboulenc. Drink now through 2015. 1,000 cases imported Feb 29, 2012
The 2010 Beaucastel Chateauneuf du Pape blanc is slightly more closed than its 2011 counterpart, as it has been in the bottle for nearly a year. Again 80% Roussanne and 20% Grenache blanc vinified in tank, the wine displays the typical tropical fruit notes intermixed with rose petals, crushed rock, spring flowers and a rather exotic, somewhat tropical character, but tangerines dominate the fruit spectrum. Drink it over the next 4-5 years. #203Oct 2012
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