'Similar to 89, more elegant than 07. A textbook vintage… the best since 78'
- Marc Perrin
Chateau Beaucastel has been in the same family since the 16th century and is still ahead of the game. The Perrins converted Beaucastel to biodynamics in 1974 and have quite got used to the methods by now. Their vineyards are beautifully balanced both in their environment and in terms of the vines planted. They own 130 hectares, not all down to vines and always with some resting land as well as woods and scrub. Like much of Chateauneuf, their soil is a result of the violent formation of the Alps but unusually with more limestone in their Courthezon quarter of Chateauneuf. This is especially great for the whites and explains how they make the Roussanne work.
Although we think of Grenache as the heart and soul of Chateauneuf, this is a relatively recent phenomenon. In fact the commune has always been about blends. Multiple grape varieties allow for complexity, for control of alcohol levels and exploitation of the extreme climate here. Beaucastel have famously always grown all of the permitted varieties and many have thought this diversity is some kind of marketing gimmick. But experience shows that grapes like Mourvedre and Syrah on the correct terroirs really do contribute to the best of Chateauneuf. The hot days and cool nights of the 2015 growing season suited the Perrin family's vineyards at Beaucastel perfectly. Marc Perrin describes 2015 as 'a textbook vintage...the best since '78'.
Beaucastel has long been a revered property and the Coudoulet Cotes du Rhone wines, which come from the same estate as the grand vin, but whose vineyards lie outside the commune boundary, are of such quality that they have actually enhanced the reputation of the family. Take advantage of the wonderful 2015 vintage and add some of these to your cellar. /CW
Offered subject to confirmation for shipment autumn 2017