Clos des Papes is owned by the Avril family, now headed by Paul Avril and his son Vincent. The family has been making wine in Chateauneuf-du-Pape for 300 years. The name Clos des Papes comes from the fact that the original vineyard was part of a papal estate located inside a chateau. The Avril family now owns parcels throughout the Chateauneuf-du-Pape appellation, giving the estate a total of nearly 90 acres of vineyards planted mostly to Grenache, Mourvedre and Syrah.
Crimson in color. 14% ABV. Textbook nose of dried red fruits, garrigue, kirsch liqueur and grilled meats. Medium body with striking acidity. Big, muscular and almost chewy. Cherries, blood, olives and kirsch on the palate. Tremendous length on the finish. Classicly styled, old school Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Tremendous reflection of the ’04 vintage. I suspect this will drink well for another 6-8 years.
My rating: 96 points.
Current vintages of Clos des Papes are readily available. Look for the the 2014 and 2015 but expect to pay upwards of $100 per bottle.