After selling the last of our Vieux Telegraphe 1996, I was desperate to list another mature chateauneuf. So I went shopping, and managed to find two cases of Beaucastel 97 right under my nose, with a supplier that I wouldnt have pegged as listing such decent wine. The price was great too, which is always an added bonus. So last night I sold my first two bottles. Im always a bit apprehensive when I sell the first of the case, because usually you are buying blind, and you have no idea how well the wines have been stored until you open the bottle. Thats not strictly true, because about two years ago I went around their storage depot one afternoon when I went for a tasting in Telford.
The wine was a bright ruby colour, clear and starbright, with a dark purple core and a slightly redder tinge to the rim, suggesting some maturity. On the nose it was clean and pronounced with a rich fruity character of mulberries and stone fruit, with undernotes of white pepper and anise. On the palate the flavours were more pronounced with the mulberries and plums being more dominant at the start, the hotter spices coming in towards the finish. A great length and soft supple tannins with a pleasant tingle of acidity still left you wanting more. Great wine. I believe the Perrins have been running a blog themselves for a while. http://www.perrin-et-fils.com/beaucastel/index.rdf