OUR WINES

CLOS DE L’ORATOIRE DES PAPES WHITE

A wine with a strong personality, exceptional freshness and a pleasant bitterness imparted by the limestone soils of Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

Varietals

Grenache Blanc, Bourboulenc, Clairette et Roussanne.

Soils

Limestone fragments

Vinification
Early manual harvesting in order to reinforce the expression of the terroir.
Pressing is carried out as whole clusters in a 30 hL closed cage pneumatic press with moderate settling lasting for 12 to 36 hours at cold temperatures (6°C). The juices are vinified in egg-shaped concrete vats to create gravitational movement (known as the ‘vortex phenomenon’) by ensuring that the lees remain suspended so as to increase aromatic potential. 80% of the blend is fermented in vats at between 15 and 18°C and then aged on its full lees and without malolactic fermentation. The remaining 20% of the blend is fermented in 300 L new oak barrels and stirred gently through until December time.
Ageing
 Aged for around 6 months, up until springtime, on its fine lees in egg-shaped concrete vats (80%) and 300 L French oak barrels (20%). 
Tasting notes
Intense yellow hue with delicate green glimmers.
The nose exudes intense notes of white and yellow stone fruits (pear, quince, peach) before evolving towards notes of acacia and remarkable finenesse. Discreet aromas of dried fruits are the sign of a sunny vintage.
The palate is as powerful as the vintage itself. The limestone helped to conserve the wine’s approachability and has imparted a beautiful salinity to the finish which contrasts with the richness of the attack. A pleasant hint of bitterness lingers on the end palate to bring a unique dimension to the tasting experience.
Food & wine pairing
The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes white 2019 will come into its own alongside white meats in a creamy sauce, hard cheeses, grilled lobster or crayfish cooked in salted butter and served with toasted bread.
Serving advice
The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes white is best enjoyed at around 10°C in order to fully appreciate its aromatic complexity and natural freshness.
Ageing potential
This cuvée can be enjoyed in its youth to appreciate its freshness, fruitiness and salinity or otherwise kept for several years in the cellar during which time it will develop floral, mineral notes and a hint of petrol (up to 20/25 years).

CLOS DE L’ORATOIRE DES PAPES RED

The quintessence of the appellation’s 4 terroirs in a blend composed primarily of Grenache.

Varietals

Grenache Noir, Syrah, Cinsault et Mourvèdre

Soils
Rolled pebbles, Red clays, Sandy soils, Limestone fragments
Vinification
Full de-stemming and partial crushing depending on the varietal, parcel and level of ripeness. A proportion of the Syrahs and Cinsaults undergo pre-fermentation maceration at cold temperatures (8°C) for 4 days. The other varietals are vatted and fermentation takes place at temperatures of 22 to 24°C in order to ensure a slow and gentle fermentation for optimum extraction of the aromas and tannins. Extraction is carried out mainly by gentle pumping overs in order to extract the softest tannins possible.
Ageing
 12 months in truncated French oak vats.
Tasting notes
Deep purple hue with blueish tinges.
The nose opens up with a combination of black cherry, juniper berry, pepper and sweet spice. After a few swirls in the glass it evolves towards notes of crushed raspberry, cherry, chocolate and subtle notes of dried herbs reminiscent of the scrublands in summer.
In its youth this wine is dominated by notes of red and black fruits intertwined with a touch of licorice and pepper. The tannins are well defined yet velvety smooth and persistent.
Food & wine pairing
The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes red 2019 will make the perfect match for a slow roasted rack of lamb or a leg of deer baked in mustard and white wine. 
Serving advice
The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes red is best served at between 15°C and 16°C. In the first two or three years of its life we advise decanting the wine for a few hours or simply opening the bottle 12 hours prior to serving with a small amount of the wine (around 5cl) removed from the bottle in order to increase surface area for contact with the air.
Ageing potential
This cuvée can be kept in the cellar for up to 8 years and as much as 15 years for the most outstanding vintages such as the 2016 and 2019.

LES CHORÉGIES

The heart and soul of the Châteauneuf du Pape terroir is revealed here in its purest expression by Edouard Guerin.

Varietals

Grenache, Mourvèdre et Syrah.

Soils
The cuvée ‘Les Chorégies’ is made from vieille vigne parcels planted in the 1960’s in rolled pebbles and sandy soils. The Grenache varietal makes up 90% of the blend and thrives in these three parcels. The ‘Lagrande’ parcel is situated in La Crau and measures 1.6 hectares planted with 80 year old vines in rolled pebbles soils. The ‘Pignan’ parcel faces north-west and covers 1.3 hectares of vines planted in sandy soils. The ‘Saintes-Vierges’ parcel is co-planted with Mourvèdre which counts for 3% of the blend. Syrah makes up 7% of the blend and is planted in rolled pebbles soils in the 1.3 hectare ‘La Bigote’ parcel.
Vinification
Les Chorégies is vinified as whole clusters and exclusively in 18.7 hl French oak tuns making it unique as it is the only wine in the Châteauneuf-du-pape appellation to use this type of receptacle.
Ageing
Aged for 12 months in French oak tuns followed by 8 months in concrete vats before being left to rest in the bottle for a further 30 months.
Tasting notes
Incredibly intense hue for a wine that is composed primarily of Grenache.
The nose is remarkably complex with notes of cigar box, kirsch, licorice, black olive and a touch of scrubland herbs (thyme, laurel) which intensify with age.
The Grenache gives the wine an exceptionally smooth mouthfeel before its powerful character takes over. It is underpinned by a delicate tannic structure that coats the palate. A hint of black pepper and chocolate complement the softness of the Grenache.
This wine will develop incredible complexity with bottle age to disclose notes of scrubland herbs, chocolate and truffle.
Food & wine pairing
The 2016 vintage of ‘Les Chorégies’ will work beautifully with a fillet steak ‘Rossini’, a roast saddle of lamb or black truffle tagliatelle.
Serving advice
The cuvée ‘Les Chorégies’ is best enjoyed at between 16 and 18°C. We advise decanting the wine 2 to 4 hours before serving or simply opening the bottle 18 to 24 hours prior to serving with a small amount of the wine (around 5cl) removed from the bottle in order to increase surface area for contact with the air.
Ageing potential
This vintage can be aged for a further 15 years in the cellar at temperatures of 12 to 15°C and humidity levels of between 60% and 80%.

A trip back in time

Our vintages since 1985

  • A VINTAGE BLESSED BY THE GODS

    1985 was a truly outstanding vintage for the Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes. The weather was glorious during the month of September with sunshine levels and temperatures comparable to those we usually see in July and August. The crops were exceptional and displayed optimum ripeness owing to the perfect health conditions of the grapes.

  • A HARMONIOUS VINTAGE

    The growing cycle took place in optimum conditions during the 1986 vintage. The intense heat in summer, followed by rainfall at just the right time, enabled the plant to reach ideal levels of balance.

  • AN OUTSTANDING VINTAGE FOR THE WHITES

    The 1987 vintage was characterized by rather unusual weather conditions. The winter was harsh and snowy, spring was rainy and late to start and the summer was less sunny than most years. These combined factors led to a delay in ripening. The unusual weather gave us an outstanding vintage for the Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes white.

  • THE VINTAGE OF ALL VINTAGE

    The growing cycle took place in ideal conditions with a mild winter, more humid than usual spring and a beautifully warm and sunny summer. The harvests were carried out in the bright sunshine with a gentle Mistral wind which was beneficial to the concentration of the grapes. The harvests gave us splendid fruit with thick skins, an indication of intense color and high quality tannins in the wines to come. This vintage has indeed lived up to our expectations and is one of the finest on record.

  • A FLAWLESS VINTAGE

    Outstanding weather conditions and an equally outstanding vintage – this just about sums up the 1989 vintage at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes! The first cuvées reflected the flawless quality of the harvest. Owing to the very low yields, the resulting juices were intense and deeply colored. The flavors and aromas were able to develop their true scope and complexity thanks to the optimum conditions in which harvesting and vinification took place. These ideal climatic conditions gave rise to wines with remarkable length and beautifully structured tannins. With its balance, harmony and strength, this vintage can be likened to the 1947, 1961 and more recently the 1978, all of which have shown remarkable cellaring potential.

  • A VINTAGE TRUE TO ITSELF

    The years go by but some things never change! Following on from the 1988 and 1989 vintages, the vines once again benefitted from ideal climatic conditions this year with a particularly warm and sunny spring. A first rainy spell on the 14 August and a second on the 30 August put an end to the drought and gave the vine the freshness and moisture it needed for the fruit to reach optimum ripeness. This was followed by dry weather and constant Mistral winds which helped to speed up concentration.

  • NOT AN EASY VINTAGE

    The growing cycle in 1991 was characterized by very difficult weather conditions. The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes was fortunately spared from the frosts that took hold in late April owing to the Mistral although the warm summer weather did not appear until the second week of June. The harvests began on around the 20th of September which was ten days later than in 1990.

  • AN AROMATIC VINTAGE

    The 1992 growing cycle was impacted by the varied weather. Winter was dry and mild through until late April which led to a quick start to vegetation. Undeniably one of the most intensely aromatic vintages of Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes in recent years.

  • A VINTAGE OF PASSION

    The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes terroir has once again shown us just how skilled it is at taming the whims of nature. Never before have such consistently high levels of ripeness and high quality been seen in the grapes at the time of harvesting. This point is not to be overlooked as this is precisely what enabled us to produce a vintage of such high quality in spite of the complicated weather towards the end of the harvests.

  • A WARM VINTAGE

    The July and August temperatures were very high, on average 3 to 4 degrees above the average. A very welcome rainy spell on the 31 July brought some relief from the intense heat and enabled the vine to better resist the drought whilst facilitating the ripening process. The 1994 vintage of Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes is up there with the very best of them in terms of quality.

  • A REMARKABLE VINTAGE

    The harvests at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes were of exceptionally high quality as the vines had benefitted from the Mistral winds, an early indication that the 1995 vintage would turn out to be outstanding. The white varietals had ripened early and were therefore harvested as a priority. As for the reds, the Syrahs were harvested first but the winemakers had to wait a while longer for the Grenaches to ripen fully owing to the dry and windy weather.

  • A SEDUCTIVE VINTAGE

    The first two weeks of September 1996 at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes were characterized by the uninterrupted breeze of the Mistral. This was a blessing for the winemakers who were able to harvest their parcels at optimum ripeness and in ideal conditions.

  • A RICH AND EXOTIC VINTAGE

    By the time bud burst occurred the grapes already had a week head start compared to the 1996 vintage. The sunshine and Mistral winds of July enabled the grapes to ripen beautifully. This vintage gave us an elegant and exotic Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes white and a rich and well balanced Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes red.

  • AN INTERESTING VINTAGE

    1998 was an excellent vintage. The late frosts resulted in a loss of buds which had the advantage of limiting the quantity of the grapes and giving us a more concentrated wine. The long, warm summer that followed gave us excellent wines with good potential for bottle age. This Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes is a wine of strong character, deep color and exceptional concentration.

  • A VINTAGE WITH CHARACTER

    A very distinctive vintage and one that is full of character. The reds and whites from the 1999 vintage at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes reveal the unique character of their terroir and offer excellent cellaring potential.

  • A HIGH QUALITY VINTAGE

    This vintage cannot compare with the exceptional 1999 but was nonetheless a high quality vintage for this wine. The year was characterized by significant climatic variations and a plentiful harvest. The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes 2000 offers exceptional structure and cellaring potential.

  • A VINTAGE FOR THE CELLAR

    2001 is undeniably an outstanding vintage and comparable to the 1998, 1990, 1989 and 1978, all of which continue to please wine lovers around the world after so many years.
    This vintage will continue to evolve beautifully in the cellar for 30 to 40 years.

  • AN UNCERTAIN VINTAGE

    A very demanding and above all very rainy vintage. The humidity that had accumulated owing to the heavy rainfall prevented us from harvesting healthy and perfectly ripe grapes.

  • A SCORCHING VINTAGE

    A record year, climatically speaking, at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes and elsewhere. The 2003 vintage was characterized by two phenomenon: severe drought and scorching temperatures. The winemakers will not be forgetting the 2003 vintage in a hurry!

  • A BRIGHTLY COLORED VINTAGE

    Many a cool night in August resulted in high acidity levels and excellent color concentration in the grapes. The low yields of this vintage were partly to thank for the exceptional quality of the Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes 2004.

  • A SENSATIONAL VINTAGE

    High temperatures (although not excessively so), continual sunshine, Mistral winds and cool summer nights all contributed to the exceptional quality of the 2005 vintage at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes.

  • A DECIDEDLY POIGNANT VINTAGE

    Ideal conditions for ripening in spite of the lack of rainfall. The 2006 vintage at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes marks the 8th outstanding vintage of the 9 most recent years.

  • A SUMMERY VINTAGE

    The harvested crops displayed excellent health conditions thanks to the dry and windy summer. The 2007 vintage is comparable to the 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006.

  • A LATE RIPENING VINTAGE

    The harvests were characterized by Mistral winds and very low yields. We had become accustomed in recent years to harvesting in late August although in 2008 we had to wait until the last days of September before we were able to start picking our Grenaches and Mourvèdres.

  • AN EARLY RIPENING VINTAGE

    The grapes displayed exceptional health conditions thanks to a warm and dry summer at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes. The high quality of this vintage is a direct reflection of the climatic conditions of the growing season. After what was a very rainy spring, the summer of 2009 blessed us with healthy, intensely colored grapes with remarkable tannic structures.

  • SMALL HARVESTS FOR A GREAT VINTAGE!

    Rainfall for the agricultural year was in the region of 800mm. The climatic conditions were bordering on oceanic which, although we are not accustomed to this, what is most important is how the rainfall is spread out. The summer of 2010 was one of the driest ever recorded. Fortunately the temperatures were not excessive and the cool nights in the month of August helped to slow down ripening. The summer drought gave us grapes that were small in size and unrivaled in concentration. The 2010 vintage will go down in history as one of the lowest in terms of volume yet one of the highest in terms of the quality of the grapes and wines.

  • THE IDEAL VINTAGE

    The harvests greatly benefitted from the Indian summer.
    What really defined this vintage was the glorious weather throughout the harvest period which allowed us to take ripening to its very limit whilst conserving the excellent health conditions in the grapes. The months of April, May and June were warm and dry which helped to speed up the growth of the vine. It’s always a rush for us in the vineyards at this time of the year but in 2011 we had to run around even faster than usual! We were blessed with some lovely summer storms which gave us 125mm of rainfall and enabled the grapes to ripen gradually and progressively.

  • A VINTAGE THAT WAS MADE FOR THE CLOS DE L’ORATOIRE DES PAPES…

    The winter, spring and summer of 2012 were rather classic and restrained which gave each terroir the opportunity to express itself in its purest form. There were two spells of heavy rain, the first of which was in late August and saved our vines from the effects of prolonged hydric stress. The second came in late September and helped to speed things up in the later ripening parcels. The fruit harvested was ripe and healthy although required longer vatting than previous warmer years. Vatting lasted up to 6 weeks at temperatures of 25°C with delicate extractions which gave us this magnificent balance in the wines: fruity, smooth and rich yet structured by crunchy tannins which imparted depth of character and excellent cellaring potential.

  • AN UNUSUAL VINTAGE, VERY 1980’S

    Spring was one of the coldest and most humid of recent years and more like what we were accustomed to in the 1980’s. The cool temperatures and high humidity were disastrous for our Grenache vines which saw the highest level of shot berries on record. The yields for certain Grenache parcels were as low as 15hL/ha. The glorious summer weather in 2013 was not enough to make up for the late start and we found ourselves with many an empty vat after harvesting. It was soul destroying for our teams to spend a whole morning in the vineyards without being able to fill up so much as a single crate. We ended up with an average yield of no more than 24hL/ha at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes. The Mourvèdre and Syrah vines were less severely impacted by shot berries and therefore made up the majority of the blend. They imparted good density and a firm tannic structure to the wines.

  • A WINEMAKER’S VINTAGE

    Everything got off to a good start with a mild and rainy winter and high water reserves. Spring was warm and dry which was also beneficial to the vine. Then came summer with its weekly rainfall and unusually low temperatures. We had to juggle between tillage and mowing in order to keep the grass short and then moved on to severe leaf stripping in the late ripening sectors so as to aerate the grapes which had not ripened until late in the season. The harvests were quick and took place between the 17 September and 10 October although the pickers were required to carry out a strict sorting in the vineyards. The sorting tables were invaluable in helping us to further eliminate any damaged or still pink fruit so as to be sure that only the healthiest grapes made it to the vats.

  • A GENEROUS VINTAGE

    The 2015 vintage at Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes was characterized by several spells of intense heat and a few storms which came at just the right time. This vintage can be described as generous in every sense of the word. Generous in structure, color and ripeness but also generous in quantity which is something of a rarity in an appellation known for its low yields.

  • A VINTAGE THAT CHIMES WITH EXCELLENCE!

    Whilst the seasonal temperatures remained higher than average, the vine was displaying a bright yellow color and the presses were already being cleaned and packed away. The first of the Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes wines to come out of the press confirmed our hopes that 2016 would be a truly superb vintage. Some have likened it to the 2010 whilst others go further back still to draw similarities with the iconic 1990 vintage. Whatever the case, we can say for sure that 2016 is nothing short of fantastic.

  • A SMALL BUT OUTSTANDING VINTAGE

    2017 was exceptional on all fronts with record climatic conditions that resulted in an early, low yielding harvest. It was an unusual vintage to say the least but the quality of the wines was nothing short of outstanding. The Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes reds are characterized by their balance, richness and velvety tannins and the whites by their fresh, fruity and energetic style.

  • EXCEPTIONAL RIPENESS AND BALANCE

    We have to go back quite a few decades to find such a rainy start to the year. Fortunately September was spared the torrential rain which meant that the winemakers could harvest in peace right through until late in the season. The grapes displayed perfect health conditions and both the Clos de l’Oratoire des Papes red and white from the 2018 vintage are characterized by exceptional ripeness and length on the palate.

  • A SUPERB VINTAGE, AS COLORFUL AS THEY COME

    In spite of the scorching temperatures and a severe lack of rainfall this year, the harvests gave us intensely colored grapes with thick skins and exceptionally pure aromas.

  • A CALM, SMOOTH AND WELL BALANCED VINTAGE

    After the heat and drought of the 2019 vintage and the dense, concentrated wines that resulted, 2020 was a very early ripening vintage that gave us a much fresher style of wine with exceptional balance.

  • 1985
  • 1986
  • 1987
  • 1988
  • 1989
  • 1990
  • 1991
  • 1992
  • 1993
  • 1994
  • 1995
  • 1996
  • 1997
  • 1998
  • 1999
  • 2000
  • 2001
  • 2002
  • 2003
  • 2004
  • 2005
  • 2006
  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2009
  • 2010
  • 2011
  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019
  • 2020

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