At the moment, Beaucastel's 2018 Chateauneuf du Pape bucks the vintage trend toward open, expressive wines, seeming a bit closed on the nose and tight on the palate. It also shows a bit more depth and tannin than many of its peers. A blend of 30% each Grenache and Mourvèdre, with 15% Syrah, 10% Counoise and smaller amounts of other permitted varieties (including some white grapes), it delivers hints of mixed red berries and garrigue, a medium to full-bodied feel in the mouth, some dusty tannins and a long, mouthwatering finish. Give it another couple of years to soften and reopen, then drink it over the next decade and a half. Rating : 95+
Moving to the reds, the 2018 Châteauneuf Du Pape showed nicely with a deep ruby/purple color as well as classic Beaucastel aromas and flavors of darker currents, blueberries, smoked meats, black licorice and roasted herbs. With medium to full-bodied richness, a pure, clean, elegant texture, sweet tannins, and a great finish, this seamless, elegant Beaucastel will be approachable in its youth, yet still have 20+ years of prime drinking.