Absolutely sensational and flirting with perfection, Marcoux's 1998 Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes is still vibrant ruby in color and offers off-the-hook notes of sweet kirsch, dried flowers, garrigue, licorice and toasted spices. Pure silk on the palate, with a massive, unctuous, yet still seamless texture that never put a foot wrong, this beauty is fully mature - and I see no reason to hold off - but will certainly continue to shine for another 5-10, and I suspect have a graceful evolution beyond that. This is an extraordinary Grenache.
Author: Jeb Dunnuck
Wine Spectator | Rating: 98
Beautiful terroir shines through in this extraordinary wine. Mineral, lead-pencil, some plum, leather and subtle wood, but above all, clean red and black fruit notes are all presented in a thick-textured, smooth-as-can-be wine with a seamless finish. Simply incredible, a meal in itself.
Author: Per-Henrik Mansson
International Wine Cellar | Rating: 95
Deep red. Flamboyant aromas of cherry and raspberry jam and dark chocolate; distinctly roasted yet lively. Huge, chewy and dense; superripe, incredibly concentrated grenache with the texture of a solid. The near-16% alcohol is almost magically buffered by the wine extraordinary fruit. Finishes with big, sweet, chewy tannins and great expanding length. This displays the exotic dried fruit aspect of the ripest examples from 1990. A monument of the 1998 vintage. (Eric Solomon/European Cellars, New York, NY)
Out of the two bottles, one was corked, and the other was worse. What truly frightens me is that the bottle I am about to comment on may have not been an off bottle. Had I closed my eyes, sniffed, swirled and spit, I would have come to the conclusion that I was drinking a Vin Santo, which, in its own right, wouldn'thave been a bad thing. The problem w/ that conclusion is that this was a DRY RED WINE from Chateauneuf! Classic Santo notes of toffee, caramel and syrup crusted coffee cake transition to a compact, steamy bath of awkward belligerence. For whatever reason, drinking this Marcoux Vieilles Vignes reminded me of a dream where I accidentally walked in on my parents having sex?thank goodness it was just a dream. Pass the biscotti please