Bosquet des Papes, Châteauneuf du Pape Rouge ‘Chante le Merle’ 2017

£50.50 (75cl)

Out of stock


About the wine



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Sourced uniquely from parcels of old vines (80-90 yrs) grown on mixture of soil types but essentially clay/limestone strewn with ‘galets’. 86% Grenache, 7% Syrah, 7% Mourvedre. Hand harvested. Traditional winemaking in temperature regulated concrete vats. No destemming. Several délestages & gentle pump-overs daily. Fermentation on skins lasts approx. 35 days. Ageing in large oak foudres and new demi-muids (600l), 15-20% for 12-18 months.

About the producer

The Boiron family have been a vignerons for five generations. In 1860, Emmanuel Boiron invested in Châteauneuf du Pape vineyards; his son, Joseph-Victor created the “Clos Chantemerle” in 1936. With his son Joseph, who joined him in 1923, they thus ensured the wine production continuity, durability and quality. Generations followed one another, extending the estate while keeping in mind a concern for the preservation of the terroir. Maurice and Josette considerably increased the estate and created in 1965 the “Bosquet des Papes” domaine, extending then to over 25 hectares of Châteauneuf du Pape vineyards. In 1995, Nicolas, Maurice’s son, joined the family business, while acquiring 3 hectares of Côte du Rhône and 4.5 hectares of Châteauneuf du Pape vineyards.

Today the vineyard is divided as follows: 27 hectares of Châteauneuf du Pape (red), 1.5 hectares of Châteauneuf du Pape (white) and 3.5 hectares of Côtes du Rhône (red and rosé). The numerous plots are divided on soils whose geological formation dates back to the quaternary age for the pebble content and the secondary and tertiary age for the sedimentary content: red sandstones, rolled pebbles, brown earth, sands – all of it over a clay and limestone subsoil. This diversity is the basis of their wines’ complexity and typicity. With Jeanne-Claire, his wife, Nicolas holds much respect for tradition, in tandem with modernity and technical improvements as well as the preservation of the environment. He is built like a Rugby forward and his wines have a tendency to be like him!

Robert Parker Wine Advocate (

Bottled three weeks before my visit, the 2017 Chateauneuf du Pape Chante le Merle Vieilles Vignes is nevertheless impressive. Black raspberries are accented by hints of blood orange, cocoa and anise on the nose. Full-bodied, rich and packed with material, it's long and velvety on the finish, picking up notes of salted licorice. It's a terrific, age-worthy effort that should still be drinking well in 2035. (Joe Czerwinski) Points: 97. Issue Date: 30/08/2019

Decanter Magazine (

A selection of fruit from 80- to 90-year-old vines across different Châteauneuf terroirs, with no destemming. This is fermented in concrete then aged for 15 months in a combination of foudres, demi-muids and concrete. Notes of baked forest fruits, cedar and incense lead to a ripe but perky palate with good acidity and a sense of freshness and liveliness. The tannins are robust but ripe - all the components are in place to suggest a long life. The alcohol is high but it doesn't taste overly unbalanced. (Tasted by Matt Walls) Points: 93. Date Tasted: 01/11/2018

Jeb Dunnuck (

Based on 86% Grenache and equal parts Syrah and Mourvèdre, not destemmed and brought up in foudre, demi-muids, and concrete tanks, she 2017 Châteauneuf Du Pape Chante Le Merle Vieilles Vignes is also terrific and has a textbook old-school style in its ground pepper and garrigue aromas and flavors, as well as sweet kirsch and currant fruits. Rich, medium to full-bodied, nicely concentrated, with present tannins, it doesn't have the elegance of the La Gloire de Mon Grand-Pere cuvée but has an exuberant personality that's going to benefit from 2-4 years of bottle age and evolve for over a decade. (Jeb Dunnuck) Points: 94+. Date Tasted: 16/08/2019

Regions Vintage Report:

“After two exceptional vintages it’s difficult to believe that 2017 could match up to let alone deliver wines of similar quality. The styles though are different, with richer and often riper fruit in the North the wines are fuller than 2016 without the high concentration and balance of 2015. The South is another story, with once again a large deficit in volume, particularly for the Grenache. The season was quite warm and dry resulting in very low yields, sometimes up to 50% down. The North A relatively hot and dry vintage often resulting richer whites across the board, with the best producers managing to retain enough freshness and acidity for conveyance, for the majority these will be best consumed in youth. The reds are more of a mixed crew with some wines approaching the maturity and intensity of the 2015s, whilst others are more forward with softer tannins providing an earlier drinking window. The best producers harvested their whites early to keep the freshness but the reds much later to intensify the concentration and gain in complexity, especially for the tannin structure. The South The year started awkwardly with large amounts of “coulure” for the Grenache with the rest of the season not much easier, with a very dry summer reducing the crop further. The result is still very impressive and not too far from the highly lauded 2016 vintage. The wines are often very concentrated and, even if the acidity is a little low, the result is very impressive. Given the quality of 2017 it could have been considered as the vintage of the decade, but 2016 is still present in our minds and will be difficult to replace from the top of the pedestal. Many wines are very close in quality to the previous two vintages and I don’t think that we will see 3 successive star vintages like these for a while, furthermore 2018 is looking promising too although much more uneven between producers and appellations. The less precocious appellations fared best especially on soils less exposed to dry weather. In short, 2017 is another superb vintage if it was not for the very low volume produced. Christian Honorez, Director November 2018 ©adVINture 2020

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