Xavier Vignon Arcane V 2010 Le Pape, CHÂTEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE
This 100 per cent Grenache was sourced from 15 parcels spread across the Châteauneuf-Du-Pape appellation and produced uniquely; After the wine was put in a new French oak barrel, the entire barrel was then submerged into a concrete tank filled with Châteauneuf-du-Pape wine. This submerged ageing process is Xavier Vignon's interpretation of the underwater ageing process that some people experiment with, and the result is that there's no exposure to oxygen whatsoever. The wine was kept like this for five years, with no racking or topping required since there's no evaporation.
96+ Points, Wine Advocate
This method needs to be more documented. Parker admitted that he requested more explanation from Xavier Vignon, writing, "Regarding the 2010 Châteauneuf du Pape Arcane Le Pape, I had to have Xavier explain how he made it about three times before I understood. The wine is 100% Grenache, from 15 different parcels that were put into a barrel, then the entire barrel was put into a concrete tank, which was then filled with wine. This is a take on the underwater ageing process that some people experiment with, resulting in no exposure to oxygen whatsoever. The wine was kept like this for five years, with no racking or topping (since there's no evaporation, it never needed to be topped). Inky purple, with a sensational youthful bouquet of crushed flowers, blueberries, blackberries, cured meats and spice, hits the palate with incredible richness, a thick, unctuous mid-palate and ripe yet present tannin. It's a singular, exotic beauty that I wish every reader could taste! I do not know how it will age, given its crazy elevate, yet I suspect it will benefit from short-term cellaring and keep for two to three decades! Hats to the team here for having the guts to pull something like this off!"(Edited).
96 Points, James Sucking
JS writes not in details, saying "Some age here. This has a vibrant, ripe, complex feel with a sleek, supple stream of deeply fleshy, ripe dark-plum and berry flavours. The tannins are so regal. Wow!"(Edited)
95 Points, Jeb Dunnuck
"A 100% Grenache sourced from numerous terroirs in the appellation, the 2010 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Arcane Le Pape offers a lovely bouquet of blackberries, saddle leather, garrigue, and forest floor. Medium to full-bodied, elegant and silky, it's still tight and backwards on the palate, with good acidity, building tannin, and a great finish. It will hit prime time in 2-3 years and keep for a decade."(Edited)