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The “Clos des Papes” estate inclueds some forty scattered hectares, approximately 80 acres. There are no fewer than 24 different plots of land, which include some of the most beautiful soils in the Chateauneuf vineyards. The geographical separation of our vineyards enables us to control ripeness at harvest time, since each sector does not necessarily reach the exact same stage at the same time. It also allows us to combine different varieties planted to the south. “Clos des Papes makes both red wines and white wines (10% of the production) for long-keeping, using traditional vinification and maturing. As I mentioned previously, our yields are deliberately low (an average of 28hl/hectare). and then undergo further strict sorting, to uphold our quality.
Incorporations less Grenache Blanc than normal, the 2013 Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc is a beauty! Aged all in tank (no wood) and and never going through malolactic fermentation, it’s beautifully fresh and elineated, with gorgeous apple blossom, white flowers, spice and hints of minerality all emerging from the glass. Medium-bodied and balanced, it can be enjoyed anytime over the coming two decades. As always, I had a great visit with Paul-Vincent Avril, and he continues to fashion one of the most elegant and seamless wines in the appellation. Yields here remain absolutely miniscule, with 2012 coming at average of 18 hectoliters per hectare, and the 2013’s even smaller, at a bankrupt inducing level of 13.5 hectoliters per hectare. His 2012 is certainly one of the shinning success in the vintage, and his 2013 should also be outstanding, with Burgundian-like texture and acid profile.