Domaine Pierre André
2005 Châteauneuf du Pape Rouge
Red Blend •Châteauneuf-du-Pape AOC
France: Rhône Valley
What We Say
SUPERIOR WINE ALERT:
Every once in a while, we come across a wine of exceptional finesse like today’s 100% organic and Bio-Dynamic Châteauneuf-du-Pape. If you are fan of old-world Rhone, then this wine is worthy of closer examination. The 2005 vintage is turning out to be one of the finest in many years!
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Mission Codename: J’aime de Vieilles Vignes
Operative: Agent White
Objective: Secure an exclusive allocation of an organic and Bio-Dynamic ‘old vine’ Châteauneuf du Pape.
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Domaine Pierre André
Wine Subject: 2005 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Rouge
Winemaker: Jacqueline Andre
Backgrounder: Châteauneuf-du-Pape (CDP) is among this spy’s favorite Rhone wines. With each wine being a distinct blend of up to 13 different varietals (usually lead off with Grenache, France’s work-horse grape, with the trend leading to more Syrah and Mourvedre based blends). The name Châteauneuf-du-Pape dates back to the 14th century during the time of the dual papacy.
Châteauneuf-du-Pape comes in two distinct styles, the more traditional ’Old World’ (like this one) are dark, rich and spicy with firm tannins that lend these wines to cellaring; and the more contemporary fruit-forward style more reminiscent of New World wines. Today’s selection is made from very old vines, some as old as 130 years, and is 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 8% Mourvèdre, 2% Cinsault, Muscardin, Counoise, Picpoul and Vaccarese in its encépagement.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Deep and dark purple with garnet hues in its clear core. Garnet and ruby red along the edges and when swirled, clusters of thin legs of varying speeds ring the glass.
Smell – Rich and bold with dark fruit, specifically ripe boysenberry, blackberry and raspberry are integrated with brambly herbal aromas, smokey oak, spice, subtle anise and black tea notes.
Feel – This full-bodied dry wine has highly textured firm tannins and minerality, indicative of its old vines. Mouth-coating with lively acidity and a solid spiciness on the tip of the tongue (that softens after an hour of opening) but easy though the mid-palate.
Taste – Generous black and red fruit but presented in a classic and balanced old-world manner with great spice and herbal notes. Add some smokiness, a touch of oak, dusty minerality, black tea and other complex flavors and you’re just scratching the surface of this big and powerful wine.
Finish – Extremely long with the ripe dark fruit fading leaving behind the textured tannins and minerality that dries the palate and begs for another sip.
Conclusion – There is just something special about old vine Châteauneuf-du-Pape, and today’s selection from Domaine Pierre André is no exception. Rich and powerful with texture tannins, spice and minerality. An array of complex aromas and flavors. Extremely long in the finish. If you’re a fan of this very special wines then this is a must add to your cellar. Enjoy now with a good hour or more of decanting, or cellar for ten years or more.
WINEMAKER INTEL BRIEFING DOSSIER
SUBJECT: Jacqueline Andre
WINE EDUCATION: Working in the vines and the cellar with my father.
WINE JOB BRIEF: I do all vines work with my team, the wine making and also the whole vineyard planning.
WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: The respect of grapes, of wine, of Terroir expression. And that is why I like to work softly and naturally as much as possible while the wine making.
FIRST COMMERCIAL WINE RELEASE: 1990
AGENT WHITE: Greetings, Jacqueline Andre. We are thrilled to be showing your 2005 Châteauneuf du Pape Rouge today. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.
JACQUELINE: Hello, thanks to you. I am glad you to show my wine today.
WHITE: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?
JACQUELINE: I have been in the wine universe since my childhood and it is a passion that has been passed from generation to generation.
WHITE: What wine or winemaker has most influenced your winemaking style?
JACQUELINE: My father.
WHITE: Who do you make wine for?
JACQUELINE: Mainly, for myself, for the simple pleasure to make wine. Being a woman, for each vintage, it.s like if I had a new child. And also, when I make wine, I know people are going to enjoy it, and I hope I am going to make people happy: this is a great gift.
WHITE: Please tell me a little bit about the wine we are featuring today.
JACQUELINE: Its a beautiful millesime that Nature gave us. We had a very low yield and so a natural concentration in this wine. It is very well balanced, complex, rich and dense. Just great.
WHITE: What is your favorite pairing with today.s wine?
JACQUELINE: I like drink it with a good cote de boeuf or a beautiful cheese plate.
WHITE: In your opinion, what makes the Châteauneuf-du-Pape so special?
JACQUELINE: It is the very successful wedding of the Cépage GRENACHE with the Châteauneuf du pape TERROIR.
WHITE: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?
JACQUELINE: We are actually giving the last caring work to our vines before véraison (grapes are becoming reddish). That will coming soon.
WHITE: How would you recommend people approach your wines and wine in general?
JACQUELINE: I would recommend to people to discover wines with their own feeling and to enjoy wines with their personal pleasures. They should enjoy wines by themselves and not following marketing laws.
WHITE: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
JACQUELINE: I would say I am deeply satisfied by my work in harmony with nature (bio-dynamic and organic culture). Our vines are around sixty/seventy years old and some of them are one hundred forty years old! And I love spend time to accompany them.
WHITE: Thank you so much for your time. We learned a lot about you – and your wine. Keep up the great work, we are big fans!
JACQUELINE: Thanks to you ! I wish you a nice tasting and some good moments shared.
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of the Domaine Pierre André in Châteauneuf-du-Pape can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
Awards & Accolades:
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED – DECANTER WINES OF THE YEAR 2008 – “Youthful, herbs, black tea. Serious. Black fruit, tapenade and steak. A big wine with a future”
About The Wine:
Bringing together all the factors gives us the opportunity to offer you well balanced, good quality wines which have elegance and refinement; they also have all the qualities; they also have all the qualities for ageing . The wines will bring you the fine expression of their native soil and vintage.
Our red Châteauneuf-de-Pape are ready to be drunk from the 3rd year onwards. They are at their best between their fifth year and their tenth year but they can be kept up to 15 years and more depending on their vintage.
About The Winery:
Since 1980 the vineyards have been cultivated organic (the first in Chateauneuf du Pape) and since 1992 they are certified as biodynamic.
The cellars of the domaine are some of the most clean in Châteauneuf du Pape. You can see a woman behind things there.
The cellar has in recent years been renovated and seems very well-equipped to make a “natural” wine.
Jaqueline André prefers concret vats although she has a few foudres. The concrete tanks have no painting inside as it is normally seen. This allows some slow oxydation (maturation) of the wine.
16 ha. AOC Châteauneuf du Pape by which less than one ha. is for white wine. Average age of the vines 65 year. For some parcels 100+.
The Estate: Domaine Pierre André is a family-owned estate is the village of Courthezon (between Orange and Avignon) in the region of the Controlled Appellation Châteauneuf-de-Pape.
The "Terroir’ is very diversified: smooth stones (quartzite’s), clay, sand, limestone. The climate is excellent for the vines: typically Mediterranean with the well-known wine “the mistral” which keeps the weather clear and sunny, this reducing rainfalls and fogs.
The estate totals 18 hectares of which 16 hectares under the label Châteauneuf-de-Pape.
The Vines: The vines are very old: some plats are over 130 years old! The average age is around 70 years-old.
Regional grape varieties including 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 8% Mourvedre and 2% of Cincault, Muscardin, Counoise, Picpoul and Vassarese.
Organic Cultivation since 1980: We cultivate our vines with the greatest care and we aim to work in harmony and balance all year around with the natural elements. Work of the soil: mechanical (plowing, earthing down) and also by hand. Manuring: regular spreading of good quality composts. Pruning: we exercise great care in our pruning to obtain well balanced vine plants and low yields. Treatments: we treat our vines with only very small quantities of copper and sulphur and “bacillus thuringiensis” against the grape-worm.
BioDynamic Cultivation since 1992: In our constant aim towards more harmony with the natural environment and forever trying to improve the quality of our vines, we are working with the biodynamic method (Rudolf Steiner).
We take care of the vines as well as the soil which we regenerate by spraying plant extracts and specific biodynamic mixtures and we work along with the cosmic rhythms.
Vinification and Wine-Making: This way of cultivation allows us to harvest good grapes which are healthy and “well-balanced”. This is the basis to make a good wine.
Wine-Harvest: the picking is done by hand sort out with the upmost care and every year we have the same faithful team of grape pickers.
The red wine winemaking is “traditional”. No destemming and 3-4 weeks of fermentation and maceration. The maturation takes place in concrete tanks and oak barrels between 18-20 months. Our wines are not filtered. The fining agent is organic egg white.
Varietals: 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 8% Mourvèdre, 2% Cinsault, Muscardin, Counoise, Picpoul and Vaccarese.