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2016 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe Le Crau Châteauneuf-du-Pape

2016 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe Le Crau Châteauneuf-du-Pape

98 Points - James Suckling
97 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
96 Points - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
95 Points - Wine Spectator
93-95 Points - Vinous
17.5+/20 - Jancis Robinson

$155.00 Per Bottle


$149.99 (Buy 3 or More)

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  • 'The 2016 vintage in the Southern Rhône seems comparable to 1982 in Bordeaux for the profound impact it’s likely to have on the market. These are incredible wines produced in reasonable quantities that are still largely undervalued (outside a few trophy collectibles). The wines are approachable yet age-worthy. And with that combination of quality, drinkability and value, they’re going to bring in more new Rhône consumers than ever before.'
    Jeb Czerwinski - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

    'If I had to summarize, I would say 2015 is a very good vintage and 2016 is magic. Honestly, the 2016 vintage is really magic; it is very rare.'
    Daniel Brunier - Vieux Telegraphe

    One cannot think of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, the most celebrated cru of the southern Rhône, without thinking of Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe. The Brunier family is legendary in its own right, having been rooted to the enigmatic plateau known as La Crau for over one hundred years. The wines of Vieux Télégraphe evoke the concept of terroir in its purest form: they reflect their dramatic climate, the rough terrain that defines the soil, their full sun exposure at a higher altitude, the typicity of the varietals with an emphasis on Grenache, and of course, the influence of their caretakers, the Brunier family. For many, La Crau is Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s grandest cru.

    The wines of Vieux Telegraphe are classic, displaying strength, rusticity, earthiness, and tremendous longevity. The final assemblage consists solely of old-vine fruit from La Crau, imparting incredible depth, concentration, and a filtered-through-stones minerality that provides excellent freshness. The greatness of the domaine is just as much a tribute to the Bruniers as it is to La Crau—they have the ability to make great wine even in difficult vintages. Their goal is to find a harmony between aromatic complexity, tannic structure, and richness, which they achieve year after year.

    Daniel Brunier was absolutely beside himself with anticipation last month when the subject of the 2016 Vieux Télégraphe vintage came up.

    “I would never use this word lightly, but 2016 is the absolute best vintage I’ve ever seen here since 1978… I loved the 2010, the 2007, there were others which gave great emotion, but 2016…”. and with that he just nodded his head in disbelief.

    “This vintage is so… vibrant. The rusticity of our La Crau vineyards, of the old Châteauneuf-du-Pape, is back.”


    Vineyards are sustainably farmed
    • Hand-harvested
    • Two rigorous sortings of the grapes following the harvest
    • Grapes are pressed gently by pneumatic press
    • Reds wines are aged in 50-60 hl foudres

    Grapes sourced from La Crau, the lieu-dit that is known for the galet roulés, or rounded stones, that cover the vineyard as far as the eye can see
    • Grapes are partially de-stemmed
    • Traditional fermentation between 25-35 days in stainless steel cuve and wood cuves (all temperature-controlled)
    • Wine rests in cement tank for 10 months, and then ages for another 12 months in foudres
    • Wine is bottled unfiltered, after 22 months of aging

    Blend - 65% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre, 15% Syrah, 5% Cinsault, Clairette, etc.
    Vine Age - 20 - 65 years
    Soil Type - Alluvial deposits, limestone, silica, and molasse (red clay) with galets roulés


    'What was in the glass was unlike no other Châteauneuf I’ve ever experienced. The juice was luminous and bright, clearly alive and kicking. The taste was salty and spicy, herbal and airy…hardly what one would expect from this neck of the woods, yet a profile for which I believe all great southern wines can strive for, and perhaps once did strive for a few generations ago.'


    'Impressive, complex array of wild cherries, raspberries, garrigue herbs, lightly spiced pastry and stony, chalky minerals. Super-fresh florals. The palate has superb texture, roundness, completeness, depth and detail. Powerful yet elegant with powdery tannins and essence-like red fruit. Super-fleshy, supple and dense core, then strong at the edges. Layer upon layer peels away on the finish. Resounding finesse and equilibrium, showing the full potential of the plateau La Crau. Drink or hold.'
    98 Points - James Suckling

    'Bottled just last week, the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape offers a classic, gorgeous bouquet of black raspberries, currants, violets, salty minerality, nori (seaweed wrapper) and licorice. Full-bodied, pure, incredibly elegant, with fine tannin, and a huge finish, this is classic Vieux Télégraphe all the way that has the balance to drink now.'
    97 Points - Jeb Dunnuck

    'Undoubtedly one of the top vintages of this wine, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape La Crau features classy notes of crushed stones and black tea to go along with ripe raspberries and black cherries. Full-bodied yet silky, there's more power and richness in La Crau than in Piedlong, yet there's commensurate elegance and finesse. The wine grows in intensity on the finish without ever seeming heavy or overripe, instead offering hints of tea and licorice.'
    96 Points - Joe Czerwinski, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

    'Ripe and rich, but focused, with verbena, bitter almond and wet stone notes threading through the core of creamed yellow apple, pear and melon flavors. Very long, with a gorgeous salted butter echo. Drink now through 2020. 2,100 cases made.'
    95 Points - Wine Spectator

    'Lurid ruby-red. Potent, mineral-accented Chambord, cherry compote and licorice aromas are complicated by suave lavender and Asian spice qualities. Seamless, round and alluringly sweet, offering lush red and blue fruit preserve and floral pastille flavors and a hint of five-spice powder. Finishes sappy, sweet and extremely long, featuring velvety tannins and resonating florality.'
    93-95 Points - Josh Raynolds, Vinous

    'Lovely fragrance on the nose, and a strong savoury, herby twang on the finish. Strongly tannic palate with a refreshing acidic counterpoint. Fine, dry, chewy finish. Surprisingly light body though, making this tempting to drink soon. 17.5/20 points'
    Richard Hemming - JancisRobinson.com

    'Lifted raspberry, raspberry leaf, strawberry and violet, with some herbal hints of sage. It has that strawberry character so distinctive of Vieux Télégraphe. It has juicy, sweet fruit, very fine tannins and raspberry acidity. The alcohol is fairly high, but it's otherwise well balanced. Drinking Window 2018 - 2028.'
    93 Points - Decanter