Friday, December 26, 2008

Domaine du Haut des Terres Blanches Chateauneuf du Pape, 1994

The 1994 vintage in the Southern Rhone was not a great but a very good one, and I've sampled several very satisfying Chateauneufs from 1994 over the past year and a half. This Domaine du Haut des Terres Blanches ranks right up there with the best of them, similar in many ways to the Le Vieux Donjon I had last Christmas. It's probably at its peak but in no danger of starting the slide downhill.

The color is a medium deep crimson, very little bricking or signs of age. The maturity of the wine is evident in the beautifully forward aromas--red berries, spices and a very pleasant hint of sea salt. It's very smooth on the palate with no heat, no hard edges. Fresh and dried fruit flavors with just the right amount of spicy maturity.


  1. Had the 1993 vintage of this wine on Thursday night out at French restaurant in Kyoto. While it was not a $10-15 wine here in Japan (3,500 to 4,000yen in the shops and over 6,000yen in restaurants), it was drinking very nicely with a nice balance of red fruits, acidity, and spices, medium- to full-bodied. The wine also looked quite young with very little bricking like your 1994 and certainly did not look like a wine getting on into its 17th year. Everyone liked this better than the Penfolds St Henri 2002 which we had after.



  2. I have a bottle or two of the 1993; I'll have to try it soon, although as you say, there is probably no hurry. By most accounts, 1993 was not as good a vintage as 1994, but this estate has a good reputation for aging. The 1998 was very good when it was first released and only about $12 at my local wine shops. So I bought a few and look forward to many years of pleasure.