Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Rouge 2004

Presentation

The vintage
An exceptional vintage, very small production because of the 2003 impact and severe mistral for 9 days at 70km/h. High pressure and great weather guaranteed no rain.
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 : 30%
Mourvèdre : 30%
Vaccarèse, Terret Noir, Muscardin, Clairette, Picpoul, Picardan, Bourboulenc, Roussanne : 15%
Counoise : 10%
Syrah : 10%

Tasting advices

Tasting
The colour is bright with no sign of ageing.
The nose is quite discreet but very elegant and suave, with notes of bread loaf and anise.
The mouth is very well balanced, nearly sweet with red fruit and liquorish, no harshness to it at all.

This wine can be drunk while its young and fresh but deserves to be cellared for a few years to gain in complexity.
Service
15°C and if possible decant before serving.

Reviews and Awards

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This vintage is a nice surprise: a beautiful rich colour, a fine nose full of freshness and a delicious soft palate, lifted by great complexity.
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A tight wine, very clean with a beautiful finish. Can be drunk now or wait a few more years
Stand the bottle upright 48 hours before serving to avoid any deposit.
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This vintage hasn’t heard a lot of hoopla, but I find it very attractive. It has intense red fruit and a silky structure. It would benefit from a few more years but is already enjoyable.
Note: 96
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Thoroughly primal, with a torrent of raspberry and boysenberry fruit rushing forth. Only shows hints of its full range, with licorice, incense, graphite and mocha flavors fluttering in the background. Has an iron-clad structure, with a long finish that shows great cut and grip. Best from 2009 through 2025
Note: 93/100
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One of the great successes of the vintage and certainly better than their 2003 is Beaucastel’s 2004 Chateauneuf du Pape. Deep ruby/purple in color with loads of licorice, smoked game, black cherry and blackberry fruit, along with incense and truffle, the wine has fabulous richness, high tannin, medium to full body, and beautiful length, richness, and purity. This is a beauty and one of the vintage’s finest wines. Give it 4-6 years of bottle age and drink it over the next 25+ years. It has the potential to be one of the longest-lived Chateauneuf du Papes of the vintage.
Note: 18,5/20
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Very deep crimson and fantastic depth of flavour. Still a baby with very fine tannins and a lovely seam of refreshing acidity. Super-fine tannins but no shortage of very complex ripe fruit. Positively scuttles across the palate – so secretive is it at the moment, but the sample I tasted seemed bracingly clean and brisk yet with great depth. No suggestion of Beaucastel’s trademark animal flavours at this stage. Good stuff!