A well-known name in Chateauneuf-du-Pape with a strong international reputation. The Domaine has vineyards on the classic pudding stone soils of the region (galets roulés) which are a major reason for their flamboyant styling and power. After tasting the entire range of wines, including the top wine, we felt that the Cuvée Prestige offered the best overall value and quality at a very reasonable price.
It is a family-run business that was established in 1952 by Roger Sabon. Today the estate is composed of an 18 ha vineyard on the eastern bank of the Rhône river in the Châteauneuf du Pape appellation scattered on 14 different plots. On the western bank, the vineyard includes 12 ha in the Lirac appellation, 6 ha in CDR and 14 in VDF.
Made from vines over 50 years old, this showed the perfume of the vintage that shows the year at its best, when some other wines demonstrated a bit of heat and dominant alcohol. A blend of Grenache (70%), Syrah (15%), Mourvedre (10%) and the balance a mix of white and red grapes including Muscardin, Terret, Vaccarèse and some very old Counoise. Winemaking uses a very long maceration of one month and maturation in old and very large oak vats (2,500-4,000L) which provide a gentle and careful environment for ageing largely in the absence of oxygen. Layers of aromas of red and black fruits, olive tapenade, wild herbs, spices and fresh strawberry flow onto a similarly layered and fresh palate. I’d drink this anytime over the next 8 years.
Full, bright-rimmed ruby. Pungent black and blue fruits, potpourri, licorice and Moroccan spices on the deeply perfumed nose. Stains the palate with sweet boysenberry, bitter cherry and lavender pastille flavors, which are sharpened by building mineral and spice flourishes. Shows impressive depth and power but comes off surprisingly lively, delivering solid floral thrust on the long, youthfully gripping finish. 94pts, Josh Reynolds, Vinous