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Xavier Vins Cuvee Anonyme 2017, Chateauneuf-Du-Pape




Deep purple colour with purple hues, this top wine is richly carved and is fresh with black fruits mixed with notes of spices and undergrowth. It is dense, perfumy, supple, and bodied(ABV 15%); not much nuance to start and without undue concentration; chalky and rippling finish. Yes, it is a Rhone CDP lacking the Bordeaux and Burgundian tannic structure. However, it offers a different fruit profile and a road less travelled; the bottle I tasted somehow finishes fast because it is delicious and beautiful. So we just never have thought about decanting, which undoubtedly will bring even better complexity and structure. Decanted for about 1 hour, give or take, will be perfect. Have said that, I believe this is the wine best to consume now in the Autumn. Best with Cha Siu.


Like 2016, this 2017 vintage uses hand-picked grapes, traditional vinification, ageing in quarts of 25% in half-casks, 25% in casks, 25% in conical wooden vats, 25 in concrete tanks. The blend is from centurion Grenache, Vaccarèse, Counoise, Mourvèdre, Cinsault, Terret Noir, Muscardin, Picpoul, Clairette sourced from more than different parcels scattered among the appellation. How can Xavier do this so well, and the fruit is so vibrant? Why this tastes is so focused? Intriguing. I got this as a present from my supplier who is leaving the company. I confessed I belittle this bottle even though I heard quite some about the breadth and depth of Xavier Vignon Southern Rhone Valley, including Raymond Usseglio, Le Nerthe, Gardine, Mont-Redon, Maucoil and others. I like the name Cuvee Anonyme( literally no-name), which I came across in my first Sociology class.


Parker gives 95-97 points, saying, "Tasted from barrel, the 2017 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Anonyme adds toasty notes, cedar and vanilla to the whirlwind of fruit Vignon was able to harness in 2017. Blueberries, black cherries and stone fruit notes abound in this plush, full-bodied red that remains silky and focused on the long finish. It looks to be a terrific effort." 95-97 Points, Wine Advocate


It is commented well by Jeb Dunnuck, saying, ""A wine that's going to compete with the 2015 and 2016, the 2017 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Anonyme sports a deep purple color as well as a balanced, elegant, full-bodied, sexy personality that's already hard to resist. It has loads of dark fruits, peppery herbs, and violet notes, fine tannin, no hard edges, and sensational balance. It's going to be approachable on release yet also evolve gracefully." 94-96 Points, Jeb Dunnuck

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