Chateau La Nerthe Chateauneuf-du-Pape Rouge 2020, France

2020 vintage: 38% Syrah, 35% Grenache Noir, 25% Mourvèdre, 1% Cinsault, 1% Others. Several soil types composed the estate: clay-limestone, sand-clay, sandstone strewn with the famous ‘galets roulés’. The grapes are hand picked and sorted on table. They are then put into vat (partially truncated and stainless) for almost 4 weeks with regular pumping overs and punching downs, tasting the must everyday during fermentation to ensure the best extraction of the berries compounds. At the end, the wines are racked into oak vats for the malolactic fermentation. When this second fermentation is complete, our cuvée will be aged in our big oak casks (foudres 35% – truncated vat 40%) and barrels (new 15% – old 10%) for 12 months of ageing before blending will be done. Bottling will take place 6 months later. This Château La Nerthe is harmonious and balanced: pretty red garnet color with purplish hints. On the nose, a mix of ripe red fruits (cherry) and vegetal scents (licorice, anise). Silky textured, the wine is round, pulpy, with noticeable but supple tannins offering red stone fruits (plum) and herbal notes (menthol) on the nose. The whole confirms a solar vintage but without excess of alcohol or dryness, the wine reveals on the contrary balance with a nice freshness to watch for a decade or more.