Domaine de Cristia Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2007
1 or more bottles$115.01
Robert Parker92 points
Wine Spectator91 points
Domaine de Cristia is a wine estate located in Courthézon, in the eastern reaches of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The vineyards are dominated by Grenache, alongside Syrah and Mourvèdre, as well as white grape varieties like Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Roussanne and Bourboulenc. This portfolio of grape varieties is the foundation for the estate's two wine labels: Domaine de Cristia and Cristia Collection.
Etienne Grangeon founded the estate in the 1950s with just 2ha (5 acres) of Grenache vines. His son, Alain Grangeon, later expanded the vineyards with parcels of Syrah and Mourvèdre. In 1999, Alain's sons Baptiste and Dominique inherited Domaine de Cristia, and began to farm organically. They achieved certification in 2008.
The domaine's vineyards cover 20ha (49 acres) of land in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, as well as 18ha (45 acres) of IGP-classified land, 5ha (12 acres) of Côtes du Rhône and 9ha (22 acres) of Côtes du Rhône Villages. The La Roquette parcel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape is the most prestigious of these, and is characterized by the pebbly soils that the region is so famous for.
Vinification of the red wines commences with the destemming of the newly harvested grapes. This is followed by a three-week fermentation and maceration period in concrete vats with native yeasts. The Châteauneuf-du-Pape wines are aged in concrete vats and barrels for 18 months, while the Côtes du Rhône and IGP wines are aged solely in concrete vats for 8-12 months. The white wine grape varieties are pressed, fermented and then aged for eight months in a combination of oak barrels and stainless steel vats.
The Domaine de Cristia wine label is primarily devoted to the estate's red and white Châteauneuf-du-Pape wines, and are complemented with expressions of Côtes du Rhône Rouge and IGP Mediterranée. The Cristia Collection comprises a range of wines from other parts of the Rhône Valley, including Ventoux and Vacqueyras.
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- White Pepper
- Red Meat
Critic Scores & reviews
"Outer quote mark I find the 2007 vintage to be one of the most distinctive vintages in the past two decades, and Cristia's 2007 Chateauneuf du Pape has the classic incense, lavender, flowers and spice characteristics of the vintage in spades. Full-bodied, decadent, layered and sexy, it's one seriously hedonistic wine that has no hard edges, a full, ripe mid-palate and a great finish (JD). Inner quote mark (9/2015)"
"Outer quote mark Ripe and seamless, with a gorgeous mouthfeel to the raspberry, mulled spice, crushed currant and melted licorice notes. Long and fleshy, with a buried minerality extending the finish. Grenache and Syrah. Drink now through 2025. Inner quote mark (9/2009)"
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Wine is being produced throughout France and has been done for over 2,500 years with certain Châteaux dating their history back to Roman times, around 6th Century BC. Ranking second in the world in per-capita consumption and first in total production quantity. More so than the overall quantity of wine is the quantity of truly great wines coming out of France makes the nation the envy of wine-making nations worldwide.
Two concepts pivotal to the higher end French wines, in particular, are the idea of 'terroir' and the Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) system. Terroir refers to the way the geography, geology and climate find their way into the glass, telling a story of the origin of the wine. The AOC was set up in 1935 and has the primary goal of protecting the authenticity of the wines and the livelihoods of the producers. Appellation rules strictly define which varieties of grapes and winemaking practices are approved for classification in each of France's several hundred geographically defined appellations, which can cover entire regions, individual villages or in some cases, like in Burgundy even specific vineyards.
Classic wine regions in France include Champagne (home of Champagne), Burgundy (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay), Bordeaux (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot), Alsace (Aromatic varietals), Loire Valley (Chenin Blanc, Crémant) and the Rhône Valley (Syrah, Grenache Mourvedre)
The Bordeaux classification of 1855 is still in use, as is the Sauternes and Barsac Classification of the same year. Wines from certain regions can be bought En Primeur, which is when the wine is sold prior to it being bottled.
The Rhône Valley is in the South of France and is situated in the Rhône river valley. The region has been growing wines for centuries and is generally split into two sub-regions. In the Northern Rhône, Syrah is the predominant grape variety, though it is often blended with other white varieties like Marsanne, Rousanne and Viognier, or the red grape Mourvedre. In the Southern Rhône, a wide range of white, red and rosés are produced alongside the undisputed king of the Rhône, Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
The Northern Rhône is cooler than the Southern Rhône and has a continental climate with warm summers and cold winter. The appellations from North to South are Côte-Rôtie, Condrieu, Château-Grillet, Saint-Joseph, Crozes-Hermitage, Hermitage, Cornas and Saint-Péray.
In Southern Rhône, the climate is more Mediterranean, with mild winters and hot summers. Châteauneuf-du-Pape is the most famous appellation but others include Côtes du Rhône, Gigondas and Lirac. Large pebbles are used in the region, placed at the base of the vines to absorb the suns heat during the day, to keep the vines warm at night.
Châteauneuf-du-Papes are blended from the 13 permitted grape varieties, though Grenache usually dominates, supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre. These wines can be supremely rich and complex and typically warrant 5-10 years in the cellar for best results.
Châteauneuf-du-Pape, the largest AOC in the Southern Rhone and the oldest AOC in France is an historic village between Orange and Avignon in the southern Rhone Valley. It is renowned for producing gloriously rich red wines, reminiscent of the heat and herbs of the south.
Vineyards are typified by the large round 'galet' stones which assist in reflecting sun onto the untrained bush vines. The climate in CNDP is the driest of all Rhone appellations, a Mediterranean climate in which the dryness is accentuated by the wineries not being permitted (in all but extreme conditions) to irrigate their vines.
The wines have a depth of complexity which comes from blending several of the 14 permitted grape varieties. The varieties are: Grenache, Mouvedre, Syrah, Cinsault, Vaccarese, Counoise, Teret Noir, Muscadin, Picpoul Noir, Clairette, Grenache Blanc, Rousanne, Picpoul Gris and Picardin. With red Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Grenache is generally the dominant varietal with Syrah and Mourvèdre in support. The white wines in the region are made from Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Roussanne, Bourboulenc and Picardin and represent barely a tenth of total production.
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