The last time I opened a bottle of this wine was more than 10 years ago, and one taster at the table noted the alcohol content. ABV is 14%, not that out of line for a Chateauneuf du Pape, I didn't agree with the negative comment at the time. I was worried, though, that the wine might be on the downward slide. Instead of putting pressure on me to drink up, that worry instead led me to push the wine aside in favor of more drinkable options. Tonight, I discovered, the worry was misguided, anyway. The wine is showing better tonight than it ever has in the past, and I will be in no hurry to drink my one remaining bottle.
Medium crimson, good brightness but the expected amount of amber. Some sediment has formed on one side. I was initially unimpressed; not much power (nor alcohol). Over the course of an hour, though, the bouquet and flavors really opened up. Flowers, red fruits--remarkable freshness and clarity for a 26-year-old wine. Pretty is the operable word for this wine. Very pretty. And giving more pleasure with every sip. No funk whatsoever, just good fruit still singing.