James Suckling 94
"A beautifully crafted wine that has a deeply fragrant rose and red berry nose. The purity of grenache sings brightly. In the mouth it offers a fluid, even-paced and smoothly structured impression. Deceptive power, too. Best from 2020."
Vinous Media 91-93
"Vivid ruby. Heady, mineral-laced red berry preserve, spicecake and floral aromas are complicated by suggestions of dusty minerals and pungent herbs. Lively, sharply focused raspberry and bitter cherry flavors become deeper and sweeter with air while picking up a musky licorice nuance. Shows impressive energy and thrust on the sweet, red-fruit-dominated finish, which is framed by supple, slow-building tannins. -- Josh Raynolds"
WINE ADVOCATE 91+
"The 2015 Châteauneuf du Pape is a classic example of this estate and it has a tight, focused, nicely structured vibe, with lots of leather, Provençal herbs, pepper and sweet red and black fruits. I love its balance and purity, but like all vintages of Mont Olivet, it will need cellaring to show its potential."
The flagship wine is composed predominately of Grenache (around 80%), with Syrah, Mouvèdre and Cinsault rounding out the blend. The wines are fermented in concrete vats and aged in large foudres. The grapes are partially de-stemmed (usually about 60%). The vines at this estate average over 60 years of age.
The grapes for this bottling are sourced from various lieu-dits from the Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation: Montalivet, La Crau, Les Blachières, Coste Froide, Bois Seneseau, Palestor, Bois Dauphin, Pied de Baud, Les Bousquets, Les Parrans, Les Marines, Le Bois de la Ville, Cansaud, Les Gallimardes et Les Serres.
Clos du Mont-Olivet is a true insider’s Châteauneuf-du-Pape domaine. Often described as a beacon of traditionalism, the Sabon family makes Rhône wines that value freshness and elegance over bombastic prowess. Founded in the mid-16th century, the estate today is run by the dynamic and talented Thierry Sabon, and encompasses parcels of mainly 60+ year old vines in the heart of Châteauneuf. The wines are classical in style, with heady, complex aromatics, and ripe, exuberant, garrigue-laden fruit that tastes of the stones that comprise the fascinating soils of the area. Southern Rhône wines rarely speak so clearly and eloquently of their terroir. It has become quite clear that the quality of Clos du Mont-Olivet has never been higher, and the value represented by their extraordinary lineup stands as a bastion of historic Châteauneuf.
“One of the benchmark producers of Châteauneuf-du-Pape…the consistent results have always been classic Châteauneuf-du-Papes that stand the test of time.”
“Clos du Mont Olivet, which is now run by Thierry Sabon, is a brilliant estate that fashions traditional, age-worthy Châteauneuf du Papes that have incredibly broad drink windows.”
– Jeb Dunnuck
Clos du Mont OlivetView all from Clos du Mont Olivet
The wines of this estate, which traces its history back to 1547, are among the finest of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Run by the esteemed Sabon family, Clos du Mont-Olivet is made in a traditional style: partial destemming of grapes, crushing and fermenting in concrete vats, and aging in large foudres.
Making wine is a family affair at Clos du Mont Olivet, and the three Sabon brothers -- Jean-Claude, Pierre and Bernard have run the domaine for the last 30 years, with Bernard's son Thierry gradually assuming winemaking duties, starting gradually in 2001. The wines are composed predominantly of Grenache (usually around 80%), with Syrah, Mourvedre and Cinsault completing the blend. The vines of this estate average over 60 years old.
The 29-hectares of Chateauneuf du Pape that the domaine holds (they also have 17ha of Cotes du Rhone vineyards) is made up of many small parcels, spread throughout the appellation, that vary in size between 21 ares and 3 hectares. Montalivet is a walled vineyard to the east that surrounds the domaine and features the Sabons' oldest vines. Since 1990, these grapes have formed the basis for the deluxe "Cuvée Papet" – an amazingly concentrated and complex Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Further north, Le Pied-de-Baud contains "galets roulés," the large oval rocks for which Châteauneuf-du-Pape is well-known. Although the vines here are younger, the spherical stones reflect the intense southern-Rhone sun, thereby ripening the grapes to full maturity. The third primary section of vines, located to the south, is known as Les Gallimades, a plot of smaller stones and gravel with excellent drainage.
Blending wines sourced from these three areas, the Sabons fashion complex Châteauneuf-du-Pape that combines the fruit intensity and alcoholic strength of Grenache with a slight and appealing hint of rusticity. It only makes sense that such a renowned Châteauneuf producer would also make fabulous Cotes-du-Rhone, which indeed they do; year after year, these are among the best Cotes-du-Rhone values to be found.