But even the enologist's unbridled passion for the producers and terroir of Châteauneuf-du-Pape took a back seat to the wine we were swirling in Zalto crystal. The 2009 "Anonyme" was astonishing, an explosive blend of equal parts of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, and Counoise/Vaccarèse. Unlike many wines of that torrid summer, Xavier's tête-de-cuvée was both lavishly concentrated and marvelously light on its feet...
It was a night to remember. In June 2011, at the now-familiar dinner table above the tiny hamlet of Le Barroux, we tasted a lavish old-vine red that would go on to garner more 5-star ratings than any bottle in WineAccess history.
Xavier Vignon's 100-year-old-vine "2009 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Anonyme had just been bottled. The color was opaque purple. The aromas was exotic and multi-layered, a mesmerizing mix of crushed blackberry and black raspberry, licorice and sweet spice. The attack was absolutely explosive yet tightly wound, walking the tightrope between black-fruit modernity and Old World minerality. Three hours after that first bottle of the 2009 "Anonyme" was uncorked and decanted, it remained perfectly restrained, still coming on.
Four months later, Robert Parker went wild, describing "Copious notes of licorice, garrigue, underbrush, blackberries, black currants, and graphite are present in this full-bodied, modern-styled, fragrant, distinctive Châteauneuf. This terrific, voluptuous 2009 should drink well young and last for 15-20 years." 96 points!!!
A whopping 362 PERFECT 5-star ratings from WineAccess buyers. $75/bottle on release before climbing to $90/bottle on the secondary market. The last 600 bottles -- all shipped DIRECTLY from the cellar in Courthézon -- are now up for grabs.
96 points – Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate