More structured, backward, and formidably endowed is the 2015 Chateauneuf du Pape. Made from a blend of over 80% Grenache and the rest Syrah and Cinsault, with some very old-vine fruit going into the blend, this wine is also aged in a combination of tank and foudre prior to bottling. Deep plum/ruby-colored with a striking nose of loamy soil scents interwoven with exuberant kirsch liqueur notes, licorice, and roasted Provencal herbs, the wine is backward, dense, full-bodied, and very pure, with a brilliant texture and length. This wine will benefit from another 1-2 years of cellaring and drink well for 15+ years.
I'm not too proud to admit that I underrated the 2015 Chateauneuf du Pape Signature last year. It appears to have put on weight and fleshed out, and while it lacks the elegance and finesse of the 2016, it does offer ample concentration, tar and olive-tinged flavors of cherries and plums and a rich, velvety finish. Tasted: Sept 18; Drink: 2018-2030; Rating: 92 Points; Joe Czerwinski; Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate
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