Domaine La Barroche Southern Rhône, France.
Whilst this small estate is relatively new to estate bottling (first vintage 2003) in the list of producers of Chateauneuf, the Barrot family that owns these 12.5 hectares of Chateauneuf-du-Pape have been established in the village since about 1400. The average age of the vines at La Barroche is 60 years old and one third of the vineyards are more than 100 years old (Grenache). Most of the vineyards of the estate are located in the north and north-east of the appellation with just a few plots located close to the town of Chateauneuf-du-Pape on the southern side. Vinification here is classic with cement tanks used for fermentation and a mixture of cement and large foudres used for elevage of the Grenache based components and smaller oak used for the ageing of Syrah and Mourvedre based components. In the cellar wine is moved by gravity and done according to the lunar calendar and weather patterns. The wines of La Barroche are modern in the best sense, clean, pure and brilliant.
“Pure’ is as close to a great vintage of Rayas as one will find” R.Parker
2013 Chaeauneuf-du-Pape “Signature”
“The only Châteauneuf made by Julien in the vintage, the 2013 Châteauneuf du Pape Signature checks in as a blend of 55% Grenache, 25% Mourvedre, 13% Syrah and the rest Cinsault, Vacarrese and other permitted varieties. Coming from a variety of terrors, partially destemmed and with the Grenache aged in old casks and the Mourvedre and Syrah on lees in 1-3 year old Burgundy barrels, it’s a brilliant success in the vintage and offers serious ripeness in its black cherry, blackberry, ground herbs and dried spice-driven bouquet. Medium to full-bodied, pure, elegant and layered, it has rocking sweetness to its tannin and ample length. Drink it anytime over the coming decade.” (89-91) erobertparker #215 Oct 2014
2012 Chaeauneuf-du-Pape “Signature”
65% Grenache, 16% Mourvedre, 13% Syrah, 5% Cinsault and 1% other varieties. De-stemmed, macerated on skins for more than 4 weeks and fermented in cement. The Grenache is then aged in large foudres and blended with the other varieties before bottling without fining or filtering.
“The 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Signature is medium-bodied, elegant and focused, with sweet black raspberry, candied flowers and spice aromas and flavors. It should gain a smidge more weight once bottled and have 10-12 years of longevity. Drink 2015-2024.” (90-92) pts Robert Parker #209 Oct 2013
2012 Chateauneuf-du-Pape “Pure” – ON ALLOCATION
97% Grenache + 3% other varieties from a single plot of vines planted 1901 in sandy soil at the junction of Grand Pierre, Rayas and Pointu vineyards.
“Always showing lighter and more elegant from barrel, this cuvee gains a fair bit of weight and richness once bottled. The 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Pure (97% Grenache and 3% other permitted varieties, from 100+-year-old-vines located in the Grand Pierre lieu-dit near Rayas) is a finesse-driven, seamless and voluptuously textured effort that gives up notions of dried cherries, rose petal, sweet licorice and ground pepper. More minerality emerges with time in the glass and this fantastic barrel sample never puts a foot wrong. It should benefit from a handful of years in cellar once released and have 12-15 years or more of total longevity. Drink 2015-2027.” (94-96) points Robert Parker #209 Oct 2013
2011 Chateauneuf-du-pape “La Barroche”
Signature is a blend of 65% 100 year old Grenache, 16% Mourvèdre, 13% Syrah and 5% Cinsault and 1% other varieties. Winemaking involves 100% de-stemming and very gently extraction of the fruit with pumping over, rack and return, and stirring of the lees in under-ground cement vats. The Mourvèdre and Syrah are aged on its lees in 2-3 year old Burgundy barrels, the Grenache in traditional large old foudre with the Cinsault in stainless steel.
“Admirably demonstrating the winemaking and viticultural skills of Julien Barrot, the 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape is a seriously endowed wine that transcends the overall quality of this vintage. Its dense ruby/purple color is accompanied by copious aromas of black raspberries, kirsch, lavender and licorice. (89-91)” Robert Parker #203 Oct 2012
“Deep ruby. Sexy aromas of blueberry, cola and lavender, with smoke and allspice topnotes. Pliant and expansive, offering juicy dark fruit flavors that gain energy with air. Closes smooth and long, with resonating spiciness and excellent clarity. Tannins eventually came up with air but work in harmony with this wine’s more than ample fruit. 91-93.” Steve Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar Jan/Feb ‘13
2010 Chateauneuf-du-pape “La Barroche”
Signature is a blend of 66% 100 year old Grenache, 14% Mourvèdre, 12% Syrah and 6% Cinsault. The Mourvèdre and Syrah is aged on its lees in 2-3 year old Burgundy barrels, the Grenache in old foudre with the Cinsault in stainless steel.
“Vivid purple. Vibrant black raspberry and cherry aromas, with high-pitched floral and spice notes adding complexity. Intense flavors of fresh cherry, raspberry liqueur and candied lavender show a strong floral quality on the back end. Finishes energetic and light on its feet, with a deeper blackberry note and outstanding persistence.” 92-94pts Josh Raynolds for Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar Jan/Feb ‘12