From Gorgeous Vintage: 2019 Château de Vaudieu Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Let’s let Jeb Dunnuck start off the description of today’s wine.
The classic 2019 Châteauneuf Du Papefrom this great estate isa winner and you certainly won’t be disappointed with bottles in the cellar.
That’s what the respected wine critic said of the 2019 Château de Vaudieu Châteauneuf Du Pape. He wasn’t the only one to rave about this French beauty. The wine was #35 on Wine Spectator’s Top 100 in 2021. When Spectator first reviewed the wine, months before it ended up on the prestigious list, it started with the remark, “This is lovely.”
Lovely, indeed. It’s born from the 2019 94-point CdP vintage with red wines that Spectator says are "rich, ripe and expressive, with refined textures. A gorgeous vintage." The blend is 58% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 11% Mourvedre and 6% Cinsault.
Grenache dominates Château de Vaudieu’s wines. Made with the help of Philippe Cambie (2010 oenologist of the year per Robert Parker) the wine is modern in style and showcases the terroirs beautifully. The grapes thrive in the region where the sun shines 2,800 hours a year, the winds blow more than 100 days, and the rain does not fall much but falls at the right time to bring all the grapes grown in the vineyards to the optimum maturity.
Château de Vaudieu is not alone in enjoying these fantastic conditions. The winery is just 550m (about 1/3 of a mile) south of the emblematic and formidable Chateau Rayas. Just to give you an idea of the quality and reputation of this terroir, Château Rayas's wines sell up to $1,000 a bottle or even more, depending on the vintage.
But, lucky for us, Château de Vaudieu’s wines go for a fraction of their neighbor’s, even though the quality is comparable. The 18th-century Château is tucked into a small valley surrounded by hills and plateaus. It is at the intersection of several major terroirs: sandy soils to the north, pale limestone and clays centered around a forested hillock, and two large plateaux of somewhat overexposed galets. The estate had a great reputation during the 19th century for exporting wines all over Europe. In 1955, Gabriel Meffre purchased this once-historic estate. Today, his grandchildren run this ascending domaine that now has more than 170 acres—something very rare in the appellation.