The 2019 Châteauneuf-du-Pape La Combe des Fous has the edge over the 2020. The hauntingly fragrant aromatics pull you in with crème de cassis, dark cherry liqueur, raspberry and strawberry compote, licorice, iodine, graphite, incense, forest floor, mint and tobacco. This 2019 makes you smile just by smelling it. Full-bodied and broad-shouldered, it is wrapped in an intricate web of plush tannins and perfectly balanced by lively acidity. This is a majestic La Combe des Fous with absolutely no hard edges.
Anticipated maturity: 2024-2038
Jeb Dunnuck 100
Starting off a trio of truly magical wines, the 2019 Châteauneuf Du Pape La Combe Des Fous checks in as 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah, and the rest Vaccarèse and Cinsault raised in tank and demi-muids. Sensationally pure cassis and blackberry fruits as well as complex notes of lavender, Provençal garrigue, ground pepper, and flowers all define this full-bodied 2019, which displays the vintage’s ripe, perfumed style while bringing more finesse, elegant, and purity than just about every other wine out there. It’s the finest vintage of this cuvée I’ve tasted and has another 15-20 years of prime drinking ahead of it.
Anticipated maturity: 2021-2041
Robert Parker 95
Plummy and chocolaty yet remarkably vibrant, the 2019 Chateauneuf du Pape La Combe des Fous comes across as richer and more powerful than the 2018. I’m not sure that’s a good thing in this cuvee, as it’s full-bodied, dense and a bit chunky at the momentâ€”certainly enormously impressive, but without the elegance of the previous vintage. It will be interesting to see how it compares once it’s in the bottle.
Anticipated maturity: 2022-2035