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Domaine Santa Duc Habemus Papam Chateauneuf Du Pape
Description: 97 points Robert Parkers Wine Advocate
The 2016 Châteauneuf du Pape Habemus Papam looks to have softened considerably since I tasted it last year. Floral herbal notes accent ripe cherries, while the palate boasts a wonderfully rich, creamy texture. Full bodied, with supple tannins, this tour de force is long, silky and elegant. Young Benjamin Gras appears firmly in control of the winemaking at this benchmark estate put on the map by his father, Yves. The estate has been certified biodynamic by Demeter beginning in 2017, so when those wines are eventually released, they will be the first vintage thus labeled. Those wines went into foudres for aging just a week before I arrived to taste the wines in mid-June. Most of the bunches are still destemmed 60% to 70%, and the wines undergo a cold maceration of about a week prior to ferments that max out around 25 degrees Celsius. Maceration times and extraction have been steadily reined in by Benjamin, who emphasizes elegance over power. Considering the 2015 and 2016 vintages, Gras said, 'I prefer 2016. The lab analyses are quite the same, but 2016s have more vivacity. He considers 2017 to be more accessible than 2016, which he calls fresh. Most of the wines age in foudres, although portions of several wines spend time in amphorae. From an estate that used to be about ripeness and power, it has evolved rather quickly into one that's more about elegance and terroir expression.
Price: $ 49.99
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