In our view, “Safres” is the most “Rayas-like” of their lineup—due in part to this Grenache vineyard’s sandy terroir and proximity to Rayas itself. Jeb Dunnuck said it “offers more framboise, strawberry and kirsch-like notes to go with a full-bodied, layered style on the palate. Ripe, textured, and incredibly sexy.” You heard the man! Lay in a case of this one.
We came, we saw, we tasted. After an exhaustive week spent traversing the cellars of France, we thought that the tank was empty. So much glorious wine… we couldn’t possibly be impressed yet again, right? Then we fell silent during the tasting at Clos du Caillou and later agreed that, overall, it was probably the most impressive lineup in a trip full of impressive lineups. Caillou sits in a legendary neighborhood in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, their ancient vineyards (many are 70-100 years old) struggling through sand and rock alongside neighbors like Rayas and Beaucastel. Their winemaking philosophy is to meld the natural advantage of old-vine plant material with clean, modern winemaking. When every single offering they presented left us grasping for superlatives, it’s clear they took every bit of the lauded 2010 vintage and focused it into liquid treasures.