I met Xavier back in 2007, which just happened to be his best vintage ever by far at the time. His baseline CdP earned a 94 from Robert Parker, Jr. that year, well above some big names in the region and his Cuvee Anonyme blew Parker away to the tune of 96. He didn’t care about the scores though, he was his own biggest critic and I think that’s why we hit it off so well.
Xavier marches by the beat of his own drum and released his CdP Anonyme way later than everyone else (which is now his norm). I thought it was a genius move. Even before I knew about his reputation as a consultant and constant innovator, I could tell he was special. Luckily, we got in with him early.
Flash forward more than a decade and dozens of 90+ scores later, Xavier Vignon is still marching to the beat of his own drum and luckily he hasn’t forgotten his deep support out of New Jersey. In a vintage that Wine Spectator said favored the “cooler and later-ripening spots”, of course it was the master tinkerer that came out ahead of most peers and at the same score as E. Guigal. I was ecstatic when I got the email from my friend that he was releasing the 2017 Chateauneuf to his good friends at Nicholas Wines first. It definitely helps that our ppl love his wines.
This 2017 vintage is the epitome of what makes Xavier so special. While so many winemakers struggled in the Southern Rhone, Xavier turned out his highest scoring flight of CdPs ever!
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91-93 Points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
Vignon’s 2017 Chateauneuf du Pape looks to be the best example he’s put together to date of this cuvée. Full-bodied and supple, it comes at you with layers of fruit, ranging from stone fruit and raspberries through to blueberries and cola.
A perennial favorite, this wine constantly garners the accolades it deserves. It’s a terrific wine– one of the best to come from Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Great with red meat, poultry or even some carpaccio or tuna tartare.