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The wines of Domaine de Vieux Télégraphe
Vignobles Brunier, BP5, 84370 Bédarrides, France
Tel: +33 (0)4 90 33 00 31

One of the most well regarded producers in Châteauneuf. In addition to Vieux Télégraphe the Bruniers also own another Châteauneuf property, La Roquette, and a newly acquired estate in Gigondas, Les Pallières. However, the attention here was all on the highly sought-after 1998 Vieux Télégraphe, which sold out long ago. If you've got some, you are probably in for a treat, but if you open it now you'll likely be a little disappointed as it's currently pretty closed.

Le Pigeoulet de Brunier 1999, Vin de Pays Vaucluse
Impressive for an inexpensive vin de pays, but not as good as the splendid 1998. Bright purple/red colour, with an attractive cherry/raspberry nose. Bright ripe fruit on the palate with some tannic structure. Very youthful. Good/very good.

Les Pallières Gigondas 1998
This property is newly acquired by the Bruniers: they made the wine in 1998 but didn't have control over the viticulture. It's a deep red colour with a brickish rim. On the nose it has sweet fruit and a herby nose. On the palate there is sweet fruit and a herby nose, with chewy tannins and nice complexity. Typical Gigondas. Very good, but it will be interesting to see what subsequent vintages will be like.

La Roquette Châteauneuf du Pape 1998
I've really enjoyed previous vintages of this wine, and the 1998 is another impressive performance. Deep red/purple colour, with a nice sweet herby nose. On the typically 'southern' palate it shows dense fruit with notes of leather, tea and herbs. Quite tannic and worth waiting a few years to uncork. If you can find this at a good price it would be worth getting a few. Very good+

Vieux Télégraphe Châteauneuf du Pape 1998
Such is the reputation of both this producer and the 1998 vintage, this wine sold out long ago. A deep red/purple colour it shows a ripe, herby nose with sweet fruit and notes of herbs and caramel. It has a full-on tannic palate, good concentration and a mineral streak. Very youthful, and needs some time to show it's full potential. Very good/excellent

La Roquette Châteauneuf du Pape Blanc 1999
I'm not a great fan of whites from the Southern Rhône, but this is nice enough. A rich, lemony, fruity nose is followed up by a fruity balanced palate that displays fruity, nutty flavours. Very good.

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