2007 Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes

Year: 2007
Appellation: Rhone
Country: France
Wine Spectator: 96
Wine Advocate: 100
Vinous Media: 96
Jeff Leve: 97
Red Wine
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"This is awash in fruit-plum, boysenberry, fig and blackberry-all seamlessly intertwined, while hints of graphite, melted licorice, black tea and violet fill all the available space. The long finish has great latent grip. Best from 2010 through 2030. From France." (WS)

"The finest wine I’ve ever tasted from the Sabon’s (although the 2010 gives it a run for its money), the 2007 Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes is a flawless example of what this estate is capable of in a great year. Full-bodied, decadent and layered, with incredible purity and freshness, it boasts heavenly notes of blackberry, chocolate, licorice, red wine marinade and roasted meat. It’s a monumental wine that offers a singular, yet hedonistic drinking experience that should not be missed.

One of the benchmark estates in the Rhone Valley, Domaine de la Janasse is run by the talented brother/sister pair of Christophe and Isabelle Sabon. Located in the northeastern portion of the region, near Courthezon, they produce an incredible range of wines, from their Vin de Pays, to their Cotes du Rones and world-class Chateauneuf du Papes, all of which are noteworthy. For this tasting, we started with the 1990s and went up through their 2007s. At this point, the ‘98s through the 2004s are all in varying degrees of full maturity, and drinking brilliantly. In addition, it’s also worth pointing out that these wines have the fruit and texture to dish out immense pleasure in their youth, so don’t be afraid to crack these new releases either. Both of the 1999s were drinking beautifully, and are up near the top of the vintage. Moving to the 2000s, I found that from this point forward, the wines started to show more freshness and vibrancy. Looking specifically at this vintage, these are still mature wines, yet they’re drinking beautifully." (WA)

"Inky purple. Hypnotic bouquet of dark berries, flowers and spices complicated by black olive, sandalwood and star anise. Lush, creamy and liqueur-like in its depth and sweetness, offering palate-enveloping boysenberry and blueberry flavors and exotic floral pastille and spicecake qualities. Fine-grained tannins add grip and focus to an endless sweet, floral aftertaste." (VM)

"Earthy, ripe, dense and rich, the wine is concentrated with fresh, ripe, very ripe and extremely ripe dark red berries, licorice and spice. This is long, opulent and intense. Still young, this should be even better with a few more years of bottle age. 97 points - Tasted Aug 8, 2014 (JL)