Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Rouge 2003

Presentation

The vintage
A great vintage spared by the drought.
Description
Château de Beaucastel has long been considered one of the great wines of France. It is unanimously renowned for its balance, elegance and ageing potential. Beaucastel has an extraordinary terroir at the Northern end of the appellation with heavy exposure to the Mistral. All 13 varieties of the appellation have been organically grown here since the sixties.
Situation
Châteauneuf du Pape, between Orange and Avignon, Château de Beaucastel red is a 70-hectare vineyard.
Terroir
Château de Beaucastel is 110 hectares, with one single plot at the north of the appellation. The terroir is archetypal of the best terroirs in Châteauneuf: rolled pebbles on the surface, sand, clay and limestone deeper down. The vines are old and have been organically grown for 50 years, which has allowed the roots to grow exceptionally deep.
Beaucastel grows all thirteen grape varieties authorised by the appellation.
Process
Each variety is harvested manually and separately. Vinification is completed in truncated oak barrels for the reductive grapes (Mourvèdre and Syrah) and in traditional tiled cement tanks for the oxidative grapes (such as Grenache). After the malolactic fermentations, the family blends the different varieties and then the wine ages in oak Foudres for a year before being bottled.
Grapes
Cinsault : 5%
Grenache noir : 30%
Mourvèdre : 30%
Vaccarèse, Terret Noir, Muscardin, Clairette, Picpoul, Picardan, Bourboulenc, Roussanne : 15%
Counoise : 10%
Syrah : 10%

Tasting advices

Tasting
Aromas of figs, red fruit and cooked meat juices. The mouth is soft and round and full-bodied. Great freshness for this hot vintage. Great ageing potential.
Tasted at Beaucastel on June 5th 2012
Service
15°C and if possible decant before serving.

Reviews and Awards

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This vintage is rich, full-bodied, with powerful tannins. The nose is jammy and the mouth is juicy, with aromas of cooked fruit and crushed strawberry.
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This vintage was known for the heat wave in the summer. Therefore the wine reflects those characteristics and will gain by keeping a few more years before drinking.
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Aromas of figs, red fruit and cooked meat juices. The mouth is soft and round and full bodied. Great freshness for this hot vintage. Great ageing potential.
Tasted at Beaucastel on June 5th 2012
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A monumental, impressive wine that is only starting to shed its primary character. A bit like the 1990, though slightly “cleaner” tasting and, if anything, even more intensely flavored. Should be great.
Note: 91/100
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Medium garnet colour going a little brick in the rim. Kirsch, gingerbread, leather, raisins and tobacco aromas with some hung meat and game notes. The palate is very ripe, concentrated and full bodied with a medium+ level of acidity and a low to medium level of silky tannins. Long finish. Drink now to 2023
Note: 17,5/20
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A stew of a wine to go with our braised beef – very rich and herbal but clean, none of the horsey aromas for which young Beaucastel is so notorious. The heatwave vintage didn’t seem to have left its calling card of uncomfortably dry tannins in this wine which was already very opulent and flattering.
Note: 94
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Young and tight, with garrigue and roasted game aromas peeking out from a core of ripe black currant, plum and fig fruit. Lots of toast tobacco and iron as well. The finish is well-endowed with tannins, but they are ripe and pure. Best from 2008 through 2025. 15,000 cases made
This vintage was known for the heat wave in the summer. Therefore the wine reflects those characteristics and will gain by keeping a few more years before drinking.