Chateauneuf du Pape, Clos des Papes 2011, Paul Avril
Medium bodied, but not light, the nose kicks in with 5 spice, kirsch and peppery scents. The wine offers soft, round textures and a spicy, fresh, cherry, fennel and black raspberry finish that is further complicated by a hint of spearmint on the endnote.
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Clos des Papes Rouge is produced from about 65% Grenache, 20% Mourvedre, 10% Syrah and 5% from other varietals that range from Muscardin, Vaccarese to Counoise. It is the goal of Clos des Papes to always include a large portion of Mourvedre in the blend whenever possible, for its spicy qualities and structural backbone.
On average, the vines are at least 50 years or older. Yields are kept low. For an example, the young vines are on average 28 hectoliters per hectare while the older vines often have yields of less than 21 hectoliters per hectare. They have some of their best vines planted close to the village, and in the La Crau and Courthezon lieux-dits.
The grapes are 100% destemmed at Clos des Papes. The first vintage they began destemming their grapes 100% was 1991. Clos des Papes co ferments all their different grape varietals.
Vinification takes place in temperature controlled, stainless steel tanks. The wines are fined and not filtered. The wine is aged in old foudres for about 15 months before bottling. The production of Clos des Papes is close to 7,100 cases per year.
When to drink
Clos des Papes can be enjoyed on the young side. But this is a wine that is much better with cellaring. Young vintages can be decanted for about 1-2 hours or so. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume. Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment.
Clos des Papes is usually better with 5-8 years of bottle age. Of course that can vary slightly, depending on the vintage. In the best vintages the wine should be consumed within 7-25 years after the vintage.
Serving and Decanting Clos des Papes with Wine, Food Pairing Tips
Clos des Papes is best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift.
Clos des Papes is best served with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised, stewed dishes, barbecue, sausage and cassoulet. Clos des Papes is also good with Asian dishes, hearty fish courses like tuna, mushrooms pasta, eggplant, tomatoes and cheese.
- Rhone Valley
- Main grape variety
- 65% Grenache - 20% Mourvedre - 10% Syrah and 5% others.
- Lamb - Pork - Poultry
- Raspberry - Plum - Red Currant - Pepper - Tobacco
- Paul Avril
- WCI 94