Domaine de Fontavin Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Empires 2016
|Region||France, Rhone, Chateauneuf-du-Pape|
|Brand||Domaine de Fontavin|
The 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Empire is my favorite in the lineup as well as the most classically styled. Blackcurrants, peppery herbs, earth, and graphite notes give way to a medium to full-bodied, concentrated, fresh and vibrant 2016 that has the purity, balanced, and length of the vintage. Give it a few years, and it will keep for a decade.
Featuring attractive notes of cola, dried spices and plummy fruit, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Empire is the only one of the Fontavin cuvées I had any reservations about. It's full-bodied, concentrated and reasonably tannic, then finishes on a chewy, velvety note. Give it a couple of years to soften, then drink it over the next decade.
Limpid ruby-red. Spice-accented red berry and cherry pit scents on the smoke-accented nose, along with a zesty mineral note that adds vibrancy. Sappy raspberry and bitter cherry flavors show very good clarity and gentle sweetness while a jolt of zesty acidity adds lift and bite. Closes smooth and long, with repeating spiciness and fine-grained tannins that add shape and gentle grip.