Published on October 5th, 2011
Tasty Alternatives to Chateauneuf-du-Pape
Tasty alternatives to Chateauneuf-du-Pape
Châteauneuf du Pape was once a favourite of the Pope. It’s famed for its aphrodisiac properties, and loved for its high fruit and spice. A classic, but prices are on the up.
For a genuine look a-like, look at the satellite appellations – Vacqueyras is a great option – it’s Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s little brother – this is one of my favourites from Clos de Caveau, ‘Fruits Sauvage’, 2007, a delicious blend of Grenache and Shiraz – sunbaked, with masses of sweet, liqueur like dark fruits overlaid with licorice, herbs, spices.
Another option is look out for wines that share similar grapes and I have two from Spain. Torres’ Sangre de Toro, from Catalunya, 2008 blends Chateauneuf’s signature grape Grenache or Garnacha with Carignan or Carinena. It is deep red like a Matador’s cape, rich, spicy and so well balanced.
Finally, Carta Roja Monastrell, Gran Reserva 2004. It’s not a Rioja, but comes from down south in the hills of Jumilla. It is chunky, charred and meaty, typical of Monastrell or Mourvèdre, which incidentally makes up 30% of the top Chateauneuf Chateau de Beaucastel.
On offer it’s around £5, but it has a rich, spicy savouriness that reminds me of – yes, you’ve got it Châteauneuf-du-Pape!
Cheers! Enjoy your wine!
Torres’ Sangre de Toro, Catalunya, 2008, Waitrose, Morrisons and others, £7.25
Carta Roja Monastrell, Gran Reserva 2004, Spain, Sainsburys £10.99 – often offered at 50% off