Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc 2017
Grapes: 42% Grenache Blanc, 38% Rousanne, 17% Clairette, 3% Bourboulenc
Château La Nerthe is one of the oldest and largest estate in Châteauneuf du Pape extending over 90 ha (220 acres) around the castle. Loamy sandy soils dotted with large pebbles produces finesse and aromatic expression. The location, near one of the few natural spring of the Châteauneuf du Pape designation as well as secular woods, creates a microclimate, warm in the day but cool at night. This microclimate creates white wines with a strong personality. Hand harvesting is done early in the morning to take advantage of the cooler temperatures and grapes are sorted to remove any imperfect fruit. The whole grapes are slowly pressed for only premium juice extractions. Fermentation of the Roussanne juice takes place in 228 liter barrels (1/3 new) and then ages on their lees. Wine from the other grape varietals is made in temperature controlled stainless steel vats and then stored to age on lees. Blending taking place shortly before bottling.
Wine Enthusiast2017 vintage
Wine & Spirits2017 vintage
The 2017 vintage was exceptional in many aspects: remarkable weather records led to an early and small harvest with outstanding quality. A mild and dry winter with high temperatures in February and March led to a very early bud break. Mid-May temperatures went back to above the normal temperature range thus the vine began to grow very quickly with imminent flowering. The very hot and dry weather conditions observed since the beginning of summer accelerated the ripening of the grapes. Starting at the end of May, weather conditions were conducive to a good harvest. Generally, the “coulure” on the Grenache as well as the persistent drought deeply affected the yield, reducing it to 23 hl/ha against an average 30 hl/ha over the last decade, the smallest harvest in 40 years. This is a rare and excellent vintage.
In appearance, a light green color with golden highlights. The nose is fresh, tense, and very pleasant with citrus fruits, orange blossom and yellow grapefruit aromas. The palate is very rich in tannins with an abundance of dark berry notes, especially blueberry. The tannins are layered in a way that elevates this wine to previously unseen levels. Rounded out with good acidity and balance, you can expect a beautifully unique wine. This is a particularly good vintage for aging as the wine is very dense.
Fish in a buttery sauce, seafood, and white meats especially veal.
GRAPES: 42% Grenache Blanc, 38% Rousanne, 17% Clairette, 3% Bourboulenc
APPELLATION: Châteauneuf-du-Pape AOP
ACIDITY: 4.92 g/l
AGING: Almost 9 months in a combination (40/60) of French oak barrels and stainless steel vats
points of distinction
- Produced by one of Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s oldest and most storied estates
- Certified AB Organic – protecting the environment since 1998 by Eco-Cert
- Estate grown, hand harvested, estate bottled
- Average vine age – 40 years
about the grape +
A late-ripening variety, Bourboulenc can be lean and neutral, but when picked at optimal ripeness, it has high natural acidity and shows fresh citrus and floral characters.
Vinified carefully, Clairette produces a light, floral and fruity wine. Used in sparkling wine and in blends, including Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Tavel Rosé, Côtes-du-Rhône and Lirac.
This grape can produce an attractive, fleshy, generously fruity wine with a fragrance of flowers and dill.
Roussanne is an elegant, complex wine of finesse, good acidity and balance. Has aromas and flavors of melon, white fruits, pears, tree blossoms and herbs. Shows honey and coffee notes with age.
– Ralph Garcin, Winemaker
One of Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s oldest estates, archives affirm Château La Nerthe’s existence as early as 1560 and suggest an even more distant past dating to the dawn of the region’s wine culture in the 12th century.
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