Red, Ready, but will improve

2011 Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Reserve Auguste Favier, Dom Saint Préfert

2011 Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Reserve Auguste Favier, Dom Saint Préfert

Red | Ready, but will improve | Domaine Saint Prefert | Code:  17126 | 2011 | France > Rhône > Châteauneuf-du-Pape | Southern Rhône Blend | Full Bodied, Dry | 15.0 % alcohol


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Scores and Reviews





JANCIS - 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 10% Cinsault. Blueish crimson not that dense with an evolved rim. Easy sweet red with some real succulence and life but it has given in to the vintages character and is far from dramatic. Rich, sweet finish. It really opens out on the finish: peacocks tail. Very subtle indeed.
Jancis Robinson MW, 28 Feb 2013

PARKER - Made from an interesting blend of 85% Grenache and 15% Cinsault is the 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve Auguste Favier. The Cinsault component, which comes from old vines, gives both the 2010 and 2011 a floral/foresty character. The 2011 moves more toward the classic Provencal garrigue and roasted herb notes intermixed with lavender, kirsch and blacker fruits. It is a delicious, full-throttle, up-front effort that appears to be one of the most successful wines of the vintage. Starting in 2009, Isabel Ferrando began using 100% stems for most of her Grenache fermentations.

One of the most passionately run estates in all of Chateauneuf du Pape is Domaine Saint-Prefert, which is located in the southern sector of the appellation. Isabel Ferrando, who had been in the banking business, fell in love with wines from this region and ended up buying an estate with her husband. She now owns 55 acres, and has followed a blockbuster showing of her 2003s with a succession of brilliant wines through 2011. In addition to her three distinctive cuvees of Chateauneuf du Pape, she also produces a wine called Colombis, a 100% Grenache Chateauneuf du Pape sold under her own name. She also produces one of the finest dry whites of the appellation, a Special Vieilles Vignes cuvee of old vine Clairette. All in all, this estate is at the top of its game. In his brilliant book on Chateauneuf du Pape, Harry Karis got it right when he called Isabel Ferrando’s wines “semi-modern.” Certainly all the St. Prefert Grenache is aged in tank (old fashioned for sure), and the Mourvedre (a dominant component of the Charles Giraud cuvee) spends time in demi-muids. The Colombis is given a slightly different treatment as it is aged in truncated cone-shaped oak vats or foudres. Isabel Ferrando’s 2011 white wine offerings include a basic Chateauneuf du Pape blanc and what is one of the two or three candidates for the 2011 white wine of the appellation, her old vine cuvee of Clairette.
Robert Parker, Wine Advocate #204, Dec 2012

The Producer

Domaine Saint Prefert

Domaine Saint Prefert

Domaine St Préfert is yet another Châteauneuf-du-Pape A-lister on our ever-expanding Rhône wine range. Isabel Ferrando’s vines are mainly located in the southern sector; her modus operandus is fairly traditional with no destemming, cement tank maturation and a taste for déléstage. Her outlook and temperament, however, fall into the more modern camp, as manifested by the multiplicity of differing ‘cuvées’, all, thankfully pleasingly different from each other.

Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Classique comes from (relatively) younger vines and is a blend of 85% Grenache and 5% each of Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault. It is a charming showcase for Grenache at is most bounteous; Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Reserve Auguste Favier is a charming blend of Grenache and 15% Cinsault. The Châteauneuf-du-Pape cuvée Giraud includes 38% of Mourvèdre that adds dark-fruit power and spicy, savoury tannins.

The Grape

Southern Rhône Blend

Southern Rhône Blend

The vast majority of wines from the Southern Rhône are blends. There are 5 main black varieties, although others are used and the most famous wine of the region, Châteauneuf du Pape, can be made from as many as 13 different varieties. Grenache is the most important grape in the southern Rhône - it contributes alcohol, warmth and gentle juicy fruit and is an ideal base wine in the blend. Plantings of Syrah in the southern Rhône have risen dramatically in the last decade and it is an increasingly important component in blends. It rarely attains the heights that it does in the North but adds colour, backbone, tannins and soft ripe fruit to the blend.

The much-maligned Carignan has been on the retreat recently but is still included in many blends - the best old vines can add colour, body and spicy fruits. Cinsault is also backtracking but, if yields are restricted, can produce moderately well-coloured wines adding pleasant-light fruit to red and rosé blends. Finally, Mourvèdre, a grape from Bandol on the Mediterranean coast, has recently become an increasingly significant component of Southern Rhône blends - it often struggles to ripen fully but can add acidity, ripe spicy berry fruits and hints of tobacco to blends.

The Region



Châteauneuf-du-Pape is the largest and most important wine appellation in the southern Rhône. It is home to more than 3,200 hectares of vineyards and over 80 growers; more wine is produced in Châteauneuf than the whole of the northern Rhône put together. The vineyards are bounded to the west by the Rhône river and to the east by the A7 autoroute.

Châteauneuf-du-Pape was the first ever Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée established in France, in 1932. Small, rounded rocks from the ancient river bed known as galets roulés are a key aspect of what makes Châteauneuf -du-Pape wines so distinctive, with the rocks reflecting heat back into the vines at night, thus increasing ripeness and reducing acidity.

The gloriously rich red wines, redolent of the heat and herbs of the south, are enhanced by the complexity which comes from blending several grape varieties. Fourteen are permitted for reds: GrenacheMouvedreSyrah, Cinsault, Vaccarese, Counoise, Teret Noir, Muscadin, Picpoul Noir, Clairette, Grenache Blanc, Rousanne, Picpoul Gris and Picardin. With red Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Grenache typically dominates with Syrah and Mourvèdre in support.

White Châteauneuf-du-Pape is becoming increasingly sought-after, even though it represents less than 10 percent of the total production. Here, five grapes are permitted: Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Roussanne, Bourboulenc and Picardin.

Recommended Producers: Château de Beaucastel, Clos de Papes, Vieux Télégraphe, Château Rayas,, Domaine de la Charbonnière, Sabon, Château La Nerthe, Domaine Perrin

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