Domaine de Cristia Chateauneuf du Pape Rouge 2020
A comforting blend of soft power, a harmonious wine full of warmth and silkiness
Grenache, Rhone Blend
Domaine de Cristia
Formal Entertainment, Indulgence
Bestsellers, Organic & Biodynamic, Winter Warmers, Women in Wine
|Critics Top Rating
Domaine de Cristia was established in 1942, with only two hectares of vines; at that time, all grapes were sold to négociants. When Baptiste Grangeon inherited the vineyards from his father in 1999, he was the first to bottle as Domaine de Cristia. Today, Baptiste manages the winery with his sister, Dominique, and they have gradually added vineyards over the years, to a total of 20 hectares of vines in Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
Ninety percent of their holdings are in the lieu-dit Cristia, with the remaining ten percent spread over three different areas. These parcels are comprised of varying soil-types, including sand, clay, limestone, and galets, and benefit from a cool, fresh north-easterly exposition which allows the grapes and wines to develop supple, elegant tannins. Their Syrah and Mourvèdre vines average 55 years old and the oldest Grenache is over 100 years old.
The domaine follows organic agriculture for all work in the vineyards and has been certified from the 2008 vintage. No chemical fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides are used to treat the soils or the vines. Ploughing and weeding are practiced according to the blocks and the yields desired. Vines are treated with copper sulphate and sulphur occasionally blended with a nettle infusion/tea (four to five times a year). Only organic fertilizer (i.e., sheep manure) is used. All of their wines are noteworthy for their finesse and elegance.
The grapes are selected in the vineyard and then destemmed before being put into vats. Three weeks of fermentation and maceration in concrete vats follow, with the use of indigenous yeasts. Temperatures are kept low in order to produce aromatic wines. They do not insist on any massive extraction, but prefer the ‘matière’ to express itself. Due to the work in the vineyards, the grapes possess enough concentration. The pressed juice and free-run juice are blended together according to the vintage.
Varietal – 75% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre
Soil – Combination of sandy loam and clay
Age of wines – 50 years old
Ageing – 18 months. Grenache in concrete vats, Syrah and Mourvèdre in barrels
Deep red-cherry colour. The nose is harmonious mixing floral and fruit aromas with a touch of liquorice. The attack is balanced and lively, the tannins powerful and ripe. Long intense fruit and aromatic finish.
Can be drunk young and kept for 12 years
James Suckling – 92 points
The effusive raspberry and redcurrant fruit is wrapped around the well-crafted core of powdery tannins, giving this Chateauneuf good energy and some drive. Moderate acidity for the vintage. With a bit of aeration wild herb aromas develop adding more interest. From organically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Robert Parker Wine Advocate – 88-90 points
Grangeon’s 2020 Chateauneuf du Pape (tasted out of tank) is a full-bodied, soft, easy-drinking effort, with hints of resinous herbs accenting black cherries. Not that rich or complex, it can be consumed on release and for up to a decade.
Decanter – 91 points (2019)
Fresh, open, spicy and aromatically precise. Not full-bodied, a very drinkable and fresh style with fine, grippy tannins. A fresh and elegant Châteauneuf to drink young.
Jeb Dunnuck – 90-92 points