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We're very happy to offer mature Châteauneuf-du-Pape from two of our favorite producers, for current drinking or additional cellaring of ten years or more! (Small quantites of course, wines arrive 11/3, 10% discount on case/mixed case purchases.)
Domaine Charvin: "It is one of the unsung top addresses, the quality super consistent, the authenticity of the wines beyond reproach." (DrinkRhone) The grapes are mostly old-vine Grenache grown on north-facing parcels at "Les Cabrières" in soils of sand, clay/limestone and "galets roulets" terroirs, with Syrah and Mourvedre. There is also 5% of Vaccarèse grown on sandy soils which adds freshness and subtlety to the wine. The estate has always worked well in the vines and is now certified organic; fermentations are with whole clusters and aging is in concrete vats, making this a very traditional style of Châteauneuf. We have always enjoyed the complex, pretty aromatics and silky texture of Charvin's wines...
Chapelle St. Theodoric: Importer Peter Weygandt and vigneron Baptiste Grangeon of Domaine de Cristia teamed up in 2009 to make elegant old-school Chateauneufs from old vines in the sandy soils of Pignan and Guigasse, in the northeast of the appellation. The vines are 50 to 100 years-old, there is whole-cluster fermentation in concrete vat with wild yeasts, minimal extraction, and aging in 4 to 10 year-old large casks. From our notes on the 2012 "Grand Pin" "... all finesse and beauty, very Burgundian in style and absoulutely delicious. The wine shows elegant aromas of black cherry, raspberry, violet, roast meat, graphite, citrus and Provencal garrigue, quite complex. There is intense sappy fruit on the palate with elegant cherry, raspberry, dark chocolate and earth. Very long, dense and ripe but balanced and bright, not at all heavy or over-extracted. The finish is lovely with sappy fruit and mineral flavors lingering on the palate."
2007 - a vintage that produced some brilliant wines but others that were marked by over-ripeness and low acidity. Laurent Charvin produced a beautiful wine in 2007, one that stood out for it's subtlety and balance, certainly among the top wines of the vintage along with Clos des Papes, Cailloux Centenaire, Pegau da Capo... From the drinkrhone.com review: " red robe. Tea, smoke, sweet raspberry aroma here with a good, rocky cut of freedom and lift. It is good and upright, will be stylish. The palate links well to the nose. This possesses naked qualities via its pure fruit and clarity of definition. It is STGT wine (wine of terroir), very close to its source lands. Has a smoky, garrigue exit. It is a real winner, a wine for lovers of stylish, clear wine, no make-up worn. 15°. Drink untill 2033."
2009 - another drought year, with low yields due to poor flowering. Growers struggled with high alcohol levels, and over-ripeness, though some late rain helped in September, and in the end many very good wines were produced, most of which will drink well for another ten years. This was the first vintage for the Chapelle St Theodoric "Le Grand Pin" and the sandy soils at the top of "Pignan" produced a beautiful wine - "the palate is ripe with dark plummy fruits, a dark salty sapidity, and tends more toward sauvage than overtly polished. It’s a strapping wine that’s full of that Midi sun, but there’s character here and if you prefer your Châteauneuf with soil and soul rather than confiture and consultants, there’s a lot to like here." (John McIlwain 10/20) Drink now, very happily, or hold 10+ years.
2010 - a superb vintage in Chateauneuf-du-Pape which produced dense, complex, beautifully balanced wines that are cellaring perfectly. The 2010 Charvin belongs in the very top tier, alongside Rayas, Beaucastel, Clos des Papes and a few others. This is a unique opportunity to obtain a great Châteauneuf-du-Pape which will drink beautifullly now with a long decant, and will age gracefully for another ten to fifteen years. The 2010 "Le Grand Pin" is a beautiful expression of this unique terroir, writes Sam Ehrlich of CSW "This is a particularly elegant, Pinot-like expression of the appellation (those sandy soils at work) and there is a beautiful stony finish of striking length and intensity. Excellent wine, with great potential for the future."
2016 - A great vintage in Chateauneuf, equal to 2010 with a bit more density and weight, less finesse perhaps, a hot year saved by cool nights in late summer and some rain at the right time at the end of the season. Chapelle St. Theodoric makes a third wine, "Les Sablons," depending on yields and conditions in "Guigasse" and "Grand Pin" - in 2014 it replaced the "Guigasse" cuvée, in 2016, "Les Sablons" is a blend from the two sites and it's a beautiful wine showing the ripeness, weight and balance of this excellent vintage - and it's a great value! (Only 48 bottles available.
82-85% Grenache (av 50 yrs), 5-8% Syrah, young vines, 5% Mourvèdre, 5% Vaccarèse from Les Cabrières, 1 ha L'Arnesque, Le Devès, some sand, clay-limestone, galet stones soils, light crush, whole bunch 20-25 day fermentation, 1-2 daily pumping overs, press wine added, concrete vat raised 18-21 months, unfiltered. From the drinkrhone.com review: " red robe. Tea, smoke, sweet raspberry aroma here with a good, rocky cut of freedom and lift. It is good and upright, will be stylish. The palate links well to the nose. This possesses naked qualities via its pure fruit and clarity of definition. It is STGT wine (wine of terroir), very close to its source lands. Has a smoky, garrigue exit. It is a real winner, a wine for lovers of stylish, clear wine, no make-up worn. 15°. Drink untill 2033."
What a treat - one of the top CDPs of 2010, now reaching maturity! What follows is our review from 2015. "The 2010 Charvin is indeed a beautiful Chateauneuf that shows a bright black/garnet color with very floral and sweet aromas of crushed blackberry with a bit of tart plum, quite pure and pretty with hints of black raspberry, brown spice, garrigue, licorice, earth and roast meat emerging with aeration. The palate is dense and sapid but beautifully balanced with sweet blackberry and black cherry fruit with game, spice, earth, tea and citrus. The finish is firm and long with dense red currant fruit, licorice, spicy citrus and earthy flavors that linger on the palate. This is a superb Châteauneuf-du-Pape that can be enjoyed immensely now or cellared until 2032 - 2035." David Lillie (2015 tasting)
We apologize, but although we did sell the 2010 Charvin we had no tasting note of our own. Here is the review from our favorite Rhone writer, John Livingston-Learmonth, written in 2012: "...dark, shiny, inviting red robe. Has a grilled, toasted first air – this is an exciting bouquet. Blackberry fruit resides, with garrigue herbs dotted around it. Licorice and loganberry, those dark berries, also feature. There is lots to play with here over time. The palate has a great start, a smooth-sided block of dark, black fruits, all as one. The acidity is good. For now, it is sealed, and all about the future. It is definitely a pity to touch this – “unless you have blood red beef or game that hasn’t been cooked much,” (L Charvin). Classy, full, long. Decant it. Complex, a great Châteauneuf-du-Pape, licorice thanks to the Mourvèdre comes through on the finish – it extends, is very long. Drink until 2033 - 2035."
Since 2016, Laurent Charvin has been producing a deliciously different Chateauneuf-du-Pape Blanc primarily from 50 year-old vines of Clairette Rose, with Bourboulenc from 70 year-old vines in the vineyards of Maucoil and Cabrieres on galet stone and sandy clay soils. (Whole-cluster pressing, fermentation in vat, malo done, aged in steel tank for 9 months, only 90 cases made.) From drinkrhone: "the robe has a yellow with a hint of peach in its hue. This has a reticent but stylish, serene nose, honeysuckle flowers that appeal, cooked lemon, trim freshness present. The palate has an interesting tone, nice supple gras richness, elegant and fleshy, gives real comfortable drinking, achieves discreet late grip. There is a wee sense of oil in the texture - a pleasing vinosity - and a salt note on the close." Drink until 2035
(Our last delivery sold-out immediately - it's back!) The Laurent Charvin "Le Poutet" is made from average 50 year-old vines (some are 90 years-old!) of 80% Grenache with Mourvedre, Syrah and Carignan in vineyards that abut Chateauneuf-du-Pape - Maucoil in the northwest and Campovin and Boislauzon in the northeast. The soils are sandy clay/limestone with galets stones. The grapes undergo a 15 to 20-day whole bunch fermentation with daily pumping-overs, the wine then spends 18 months in concrete vat and is bottled unfined and unfiltered. The resulting wine is equal to many Châteauneuf-du-Pape, offering complex aromas of garrigue and spicy red fruits with the structure to evolve and drink well over ten to fifteen years. The 2018, tasted with Laurent Charvin in January, 2020, was quite remarkable with gorgeous floral aromas of strawberry and blackberry and vibrant, supple black fruits on the palate with round juicy tannins - delicious already but with enough brightness and structure to provide beautiful drinking over the next ten years. This is truly "gouleyant" and should be purchased by the case - at $22.99 per bottle it's a great value! David Lillie
Chapelle Saint-Theodoric is a joint venture between the Grangeon family of Domaine de Cristia and importer and CDP lover Peter Weygandt. Le Grand Pin is all old-vine Grenache from a parcel in the Pignan vineyard on sandy soils. Whole-cluster fermentation in concrete vat with wild yeasts, minimal extraction, aged in 4 to 10 year-old large casks. The 2009 vintage in Châteauneuf can be a fraught one. Portlike with lashings of oak and a soupçon of garrigue, right? Well, in the case of Chapelle St. Theodiric's Le Grand Pin it's ripe for sure, not stewed and not a monument to cooperage. Garrigue? Absolutely, with some leather, and warmth on the nose and palate. But there’s an intriguing soil component here—the edges and grain haven’t been buffed out in the modern fashion. The palate is ripe with dark plummy fruits, a dark salty sapidity, and tends more toward sauvage than overtly polished. It’s a strapping wine that’s full of that Midi sun, but there’s character here and if you prefer you Châteauneuf with soil and soul rather than confiture and consultants, there’s a lot to like here. Caveat lector, this was given a quick decant, and served at cellar temperature. Delicious with roasted duck leg, fingerling potatoes persillé, and sautéed spinach from the Greenmarket, though I might opt for a daube or lamb shanks next time. If you like more earthy and savory character to your CDP, this is definitely well worth a look. John McIlwain
100% Grenache (75 to 95 year-old vines) from yellow sand with a little clay on 1.7 hectares on Guigasse in the northeast of CDP near Pignan. Organic farming and old-school winemaking with 2-3 week whole bunch concrete vat vinification, natural yeasts only, minimal extraction, aged in 4-10 year-old 600-litre oak casks for 24 months, bottled unfined, unfiltered. The 2010 Guigasse is showing traces of lush dark red fruits that become exponentially more prominent with air. What really makes this wine compelling is an intense savoriness, reminiscent of dried herbs and browning meat that makes one's stomach growl in anticipation. The tannins feel quite well-integrated and there is good acidity, indicating that this has many years still ahead of it. This is very fine serious Chateauneuf and well worth a splurge as we head into the fall and winter months. SE
Le Grand Pin is all Grenache from the top of the Pignan vineyard literally adjoining the vines of Chateau Rayas on sandy soils. Whole-cluster fermentation in concrete vat with wild yeasts, minimal extraction, aged in 4 to 10 year-old large casks. The terroir here gives a relatively light-bodied, very fine style of Chateauneuf. The fruit profile here is the brightest and freshest of the range, with crunchy black cherry and raspberry, along with notes of kirsch, cocoa nib and leafy dark soil. This is a particularly elegant, Pinot-like expression of the appellation (those sandy soils at work) and there is a beautiful stony finish of striking length and intensity. Excellent wine, with great potential for the future. Sam Ehrlich
Chappelle St. Theodoric - a project of winemaker Bapiste Grangeon and Peter Weygandt - has quickly become one of our favorite Southern Rhône producers. The domaine is comprised of two parcels of Grenache vines (each ranging in age between 50-100 years): La Guigasse, a soil of pure sand, and Le Grand Pin, a terroir of pure sand at the top of Pignan - and famously neighboring Château Rayas. "Les Sablons" is Grenache from both parcels, which sees whole-cluster vinification, and aging in demi-muids. The 2016 is a bolder and richer vintage than most: it will still carry the aromatics and floral traits of Chapelle St. Theodoric's wines, yet with beautiful undercurrents of black raspberry, red flowers, fresh red cherry and a long finish of cassis and bright plum. An elegant wine that can be aged for quite some time, or enjoyed now after an hour decant. JDC