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 red fruits, garrigue, wet stones and roasted herbs. Medium body with exquisite acidity. Traditional in style, powerful and well balanced. Raspberry, olives, game and pepper on the palate. Exceptional length on the finish with ever present tannins. Tremendous Chateauneuf-du-Pape from an underrated vintage that is aging gloriously. Best over the next 3-5 years.
My rating: 95 points.
Current vintages of Clos des Papes are readily available. Look for the the 2016 and 2017 but expect to pay upwards of $100 per bottle.