2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Speciale Wines Offer Nice Surprises
2012 Chateauneuf du Pape wines 300×200 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Speciale Wines Offer Nice Surprises
The 2014 Chateauneuf du Pape harvest is in full bloom. Growers are picking all over the Southern Rhone Valley. The conditions for picking have been good so far. It’s been sunny and warm until recently in Chateauneuf du Pape. Some rain is falling and temperatures are going to drop a bit over the next few days. One thing we know for certain is growers will have a lot more wine with 2014. 2014 could be the biggest crop since 2007. After 2013, this is welcome news. But, as the old saying goes, it’s not over until it’s over. And it ain’t over yet! In other words, it’s far too soon to discuss the 2014 vintage as the grapes have not even fully arrived at the cellars. While it’s too early to know much about 2014, it’s not too early to talk about the recently bottled 2012 Chateauenuf du Pape wines I tasted in late June.
Drinking wine is fun. Tasting wine is almost as much fun. But trust me on this, tasting a single vintage in one day is a lot of work. It’s taxing on your palate and concentration. Often, it’s the surprises encountered during the tasting that keep you awake and focused becuase those wines really stand out. I really like the style of 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape wines with thier freshness, clean, silky fruits and forward personality. Some domaines were not as successful as I had hoped. Others made strong wines and a vew producers turned out sublilme efforts.
With the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape wines, alcohol levels for most producers were in the 14%-14.5% range instead of 15% and over. For tasters that did not enjoy the richer, more alcoholic wines from 2009 and 2010, this is vintage they should enjoy. The wines are easy to drink and even easier to like. While they lack the concentration of years lke 2010, they are fresh, pure and charming. My previous report from last week looked at the regular 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape wines. There were definitely some wines that merited buying. In this report, there are also wines well worth taking a look at. At their best, there are estates that made 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape wines that transcend the vintage. In fact, a few wines really stood out and made an impression, due to their supple, open style and character. As you will see, there are definitely some 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape wines worth taking a serious look at.