($169) Dark red color. Intensely spicy and rich on the nose, with vibrant aromas of kirsch, raspberry, wild strawberry, anise and fresh rose. Amazingly concentrated, juicy and pure in the mouth, with compelling, energetic flavors of dark raspberry, cherry preserves, poached rhubarb and rose pastille. The minerally finish, which features completely buffered tannins, builds inexorably and goes on and on. This comes from vines planted in 1889, according to Brunel.
The limited production but exquisite 2003 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Centenaire is a riper, more concentrated version of the 2000 Centenaire. There are about 500 cases of this Grenache-dominated wine produced from a vineyard planted in 1889 with some Syrah and Mourvedre (about 20%) added to the blend. The latter components are aged in small barrels. The wine has a dense ruby/purple-tinged color to the rim, a strikingly pure nose of kirsch liqueur, creme de cassis, and hints of vanilla and espresso. Hitting the palate with full-throttle opulence, superb concentration, fabulous purity, and striking multiple levels of raspberries and black cherry jam, this is a beautifully full-bodied, brilliantly concentrated and structured wine that reveals sweet but abundant tannin and a finish that goes on for close to a minute. I still think the two greatest Centenaires made to date have been the 1990 and 1998, but this one is close in quality.
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Community Tasting Notes
average score of 95 points based upon 2 reviews