Domaine du Vieux Lazaret Chateauneuf du Pape – 2010

We decided to try a long standing restaurant, the Red Pheasant Inn & Restaurant, in Dennis, MA, owned by Bill and Denise Atwood.  The Red Pheasant is a 200 year old barn with a lovely “Inn-Type” atmosphere with several warm and cozy rooms to dine in.  When we looked at the menu, I was leaning towards duck with a port wine reduction, my wife Elaine had eyed a nice rich fish dish with butter, capers and wine sauce, and my daughter Christine chose a steak, grilled with a crispy finish.  The dilemma was to choose a wine that could possible complement all of these dishes.  After reviewing the wine list I found a Chateauneuf de Pape, which had a blend of 67% Grenache, 22% Syrah, 5% Mourvedre and 6% of a couple of other varieties that make this wine come together.  Since Elaine’s fish was heavy and buttery, we took a chance with this wine, and we were not disappointed.

The vineyards are scattered over 90 hectares, divided into 35 different parcels of vines throughout Chateauneuf de Pape, giving Domaine du Vieux Lazaret tremendous diversity over a number of variables such as soil, grape types and vine age.  Grape harvest is done by hand providing for the best possible fruit ensuring the quality of the wine.  Production is limited to 35 hectoliters per hectare as set by A.O.C. laws.

Now to the wine, when poured into the glass, the color was a nice deep ruby red.  The bouquet developed nicely reminiscent of plums and ripe berries with slight spice trying to break through.  Full bodied with a long taste.  Flavor was full of berries and spice with balanced tannins.  The restaurant price was $68 but you can get a bottle for around $30.

Wrapping up the evening, we enjoyed spending a half hour chatting with owner Denise Atwood.  Besides the great wine, you should experience Red Pheasant if you find yourself on Cape Cod.