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The Wines

78% Grenache noir (1920s-early 2000s), 6% Mourvèdre, 1% Cinsault, 1% Muscardin, 1% Clairette rose, 1% Clairette blanche, 1% Counoise, 1% Vaccarèse, 1% Picpoul blanc, 1% Picpoul noir, 1% Picpoul gris, 2% Roussanne, 3% Syrah, 1% Picardan, 1% Terret Noir from 20 different plots inc La Berthaude, La Crau, Colombis, Les Serres, av age 58 years, from 80% galet stone soils, 15% compacted sand/safre soils, 5% limestone soils, 19-21 day concrete vat vinification, destemmed, pumping overs, aged 90% large barrel, 5% 600-litre oak casks, 5% used 228-litre oak casks 18 months, unfined, filtered, first vintage as Domaine André Mathieu 2013, 20-27,000 b before 2013 was 80-85% Grenache, 15-20% Mourvèdre, Cinsault, Muscardin, Clairette, Counoise, Vaccarèse, Picpoul, Bourboulenc, Roussanne, Syrah, Picardan, Terret Noir, av age 52 years), 19-21 day vinification, pumping overs, aged 90% large barrel, 5% 228-litre, 5% 600-litre oak casks 16 months, unfined, filtered, 25-27,000 b

2017

(large barrel/casks, bottling June 2019) full, dark red colour. The bouquet has a briary note, sweet herbs mixed with roast coffee beans, a little spark of Grenache plum fruit at its centre, a hint of power. The palate carries authentic, deep content, gathers some charge of degree towards the finish, keeps going. It’s on the tough, still unformed side; in its favour are local notes. The aftertaste is chewy, tenacious. Wait, decant, serve in a large glass. Marked on potential to come together, and a be a grounded bonhomme of a Châteauneuf-du-Pape. 15°. 20,000 b. From 2023. 2042-44 Oct 2018

2016

(barrel/casks, bottling May 2018) dark red colour. The nose carries a sweet signature of red fruits with licorice and dusty trails, the fruit close to soaked cherries or griottes. The palate is composed of sparky fruit with cut and crispness, to the extent that it’s rather stiff for now. This is fresh and tingling, helped by the inclusion of stems, I reckon, and by the use of white or non-red grape varieties. The fruit is pure. It has character, is outside the mainstream, and will take time to fuse and then expand. Decanting advised. 15°. 20,000 b. €20. From 2020. 2037-40 Oct 2017

2015

(large barrel/casks, bottling May 2017) dark robe. A beefy, meat stock air fronts the nose, with mocha, dried black raisin, very much a southern agenda, the Mediterranean in full bloom. The palate is darkly flavoured, billows with comprehensive content that carries spicing. This is full bore Châteauneuf, a real sunshine child. Serve in a large glass around 2023, and wait for a big ride. It’s not complicated, gives exactly what it promises on the label: a rattling deep southern wine. 14.5°. From 2019. 2035-38 Sept 2016 

2013 ()

(large barrel) purple robe. This didn’t present very well at the tasting. Has a sweet fruited but reductive nose. It is plump in the mid-palate, but coarse and grainy at the same time. The tannins finish a little drily. Out of kilter as it stands now, so could improve. 14°. From 2016. 2023-25 JL Oct 2014

2012 ()

deep, dark red. Oily, dark Indian tea intensity, red meat show on the weighty nose, with a careful interior of black stone fruit that has a liqueur angle, also a granular note, leather. The palate has a copious profile, serves up the round, succulent red fruit of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, with nuggety tannins present after half way that add spots of nut and grain. It keeps going well. From 2016 to allow the tannins to tuck in. It holds good mid-palate gras richness, and steady length. It finishes well. Has a soaked style, is a bit obvious. 2025-26 Nov 2013

2011

medium depth red. Has a sweet red jam air, as well as a baked presence. This has a very Grenache-centric, sunny and fat bouquet, provides a good platform for pleasure. Plump strawberry, iris flowers combine to add charm. This is straightforward, and has Châteauneuf sweetness in its red fruit. Not far off ready, does not have any great structure. It takes on a little dusty tannin towards the finish, where there is a late note of acidity. The finish may dip, so drink this easy wine early. From late 2013. 15°. 2021-22 Dec 2012

2010 ()

½ bottle: full red; sunny red fruit jelly aroma that is Grenache-inspired, breathes a warm south in its manner. This is a very typical Châteauneuf, with some garrigue presence, licorice, shows good spark. The palate mixes its good heart of Grenache plum and ripe strawberry fruit with some baked notes, firm tannins. It ends coolly, shows the vintage strength, but is complete. Rosemary and thyme are present on the good, varied finish. It is now starting to tighten up. A properly full Châteauneuf-du-Pape. 15°. 2032-34  Dec 2013 Previously Dec 2011 ***(*) (barrel) rather attractive robe, with some depth of black in it; the bouquet is shapely – there is a steady black fruit presence that involves toffee and treacle also. The palate is wide, with crunchy tannin at its heart; it gathers momentum, and runs with a dark purpose. The end is tarry, with black raisin there, and a ripe tightness. From late 2013. More of a waiting wine than some Tradition 2010s that are bendy, easy, early. 2029-31 Dec 2011

2009

(barrel) quite a dark plum red robe; there is Grenache depth of red fruit on the nose, which holds up well – this is authentic, has a sprinkle of herbs, a wee menthol and flint air as well. The palate runs in a very good sequence, is very continuous: the Grenache theme is well sustained all through, just tones down in its later stages. Tasty and local, STGT – it has expressive local virtues, good variety, really delivers. Very good typicity. It finishes quietly but in an assured way. From mid-2012. 2020-22 Oct 2010

2008

(barrel) dark red top tints. Black jelly aroma – there are sweet airs in this rather airy nose, like a kite in the sky. Easy drinking debut to the palate – agreeable black fruit with juice and squeeze in it, charm. The length is correct. An early wine that is well collected, works as one, is w.o.w. wine. Has enough tannin to spice up the finish and add a little chew. From late 2010. 2017-18 Dec 2009

2007

quite a full red; has a brewed red fruits aroma, with a lurking top meaty air – as if drops of meat have rolled in – this bouquet has good core. The palate holds compact, well-sealed red fruit with a jam nature to it, plus muscle to hearten it. It runs along steadily, is STGT in nature – this is a good example of Châteauneuf-du-Pape Grenache. The fruit flourishes to the end, where there is some tannin waiting, followed by a little power or heat. Beau and bonny wine. From 2010. 2020-22 Nov 2008

2006

dark red; reserved, rather high tone air to the bouquet, holds blackberry fruit. It is upright now, but is ripe at heart, has a few herbs circulating also. The palate is mild, mixing black berry and stone fruits, makes even progress along its course. Easy-natured wine that shows more on the front than the late palate. Ends firmly. Fair balance here. From late 2009. 2017-19 Nov 2008 Previously Nov 2007 **(*) dark red colour; raspberry, mulberry aroma which is on the a jam-liqueur path, is pretty wide, and the cropping has been deliberately quite late. Good, ample juice with fleshy Grenache appeal on the palate. Shows a touch of overripeness in the grapes late on. Will be easy to drink from 2009 on, with its tannins absorbed then. Not very deep. 2018-20 Nov 2007

2005

assured red colour; herbal bouquet that is a little pointed, comes in an understated style with a little pepper, and promises future variety. Red fruit that is slightly facile on the attack, suggests near-term drinking style of wine. I just feel that it might have been robbed by a Cuvée Prestige or two (tasted blind). Length is OK. More stuffing would serve it – is perfectly correct but lacks flair and inspiration, is a tame do. 2015-17 Nov 2006

2004

quite a dark red; smoky, enticing aroma, its black fruit is quite softy now and can move on to other horizons –herbs and forests. Harmonious, well-drawn fruit here, tasty black fruits. Has a lurking trace of tannin with a minted twist to it. Length and grip both good. Beau Vin. 2018-20 Oct 2006

1995

dark robe; the nose offers some typical pepper, spice, herbs in a heady ensemble. The palate is soft, softer than expected from the nose, a plump affair. Has fair extract and length, holds a rounded flavour. A wine made on deliberately “full” lines, but is not overdone. Rather sweet overall. From 1999. 2010-12 Oct 1996

1994

decent dark robe, dark plum. The nose is very warm, offers cooked black fruit, some alcohol, is deep. The attack is surprisingly sweet and rather facile – it delivers itself rather easily, is sweet throughout. I suspect it has been made on a risk-free basis, not reaching for many stars. Lacks interest. To 2006. Oct 1996