M. Chapoutier Châteauneuf du Pape Barbe Rac 2018
I’d put the 2018 Châteauneuf du Barbe Rac up against anything in this vintage. Coming from 100% Grenache brought up all in concrete, it reveals a deeper purple/ruby color as well as awesome notes of red and blue fruits, ground pepper, iodine, spring flowers, and a touch of gamey meat. Possessing more depth and concentration than most, it’s full-bodied, has a stacked mid-palate, silky tannins, and a big, big finish. I already like it today, but I suspect it will be even better with 1-3 years of bottle age, and it should keep for 15 years or more.
Blackberry, black currant and plum fruit is gently mulled, carried by silky tannins and infused with anise, black tea, warm earth and a flicker of tar at the very end. Seductive in feel, but there's some horsepower under the hood, so no rush here. Drink now through 2038.
The 2018 Chateauneuf du Pape Barbe Rac has turned out beautifully. Stunning aromas of red raspberries and black cherries, crushed stone and even a hint of roses emerge on the nose, while the full-bodied palate is expansive and silky, ending in a flurry of gently dusty tannins that only further accentuate this wine's fruity depths. Although approachable now, it should drink well for more than a decade.