Everything about Domaine du Vieux Telegraph, Chateauneuf du Pape, Rhone wine producer profile with wine tasting notes, wine and food pairing tips, best vintages, wine ratings, a history of the property, information on wine making and terroir, along with wine tasting reviews and images. If you want to read about other important wineries and wine makers from the Rhone valley: Links to all Rhone Valley Wine Producer Profiles
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph History, Overview
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph is one of the better known names in Chateauneuf du Pape. The Brunier family has been producing wines in the Southern Rhone Valley for over 100 years. Vieux Telegraph was founded in 1898 by Hippolyte Brunier, the great, grand father of the current owners. At the time the estate was founded, only 1 hectare of vines was cultivated with grapes. The remaining land was used for growing fruit and vegetables, which in those days, made a lot more money than grapes used for wine.
They chose the name Vieux Telegraph from an aging signal tower built in 1792 by Claude Chappe. Chappe is the inventor of the optical telegraph, so as you can see, Vieux Telegraph is a very fitting name. The first vintage to be produced and bottled at Vieux Telegraph was the 1900.
Henri Brunier took over managing Vieux Telegraph by the late 1940’s. It was Henri Brunier that was responsible for expanding their vineyards and promoting the brand outside of France. Beginning in 1988, the sons of Henri Brunier, Frederic Brunier and Daniel Brunier, took over management of Vieux Telegraph.
The best vintages of Domaine du Vieux Telegraph are: 2016, 2015, 2012, 2010, 2009, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2001, 2000, 1998, 1990, 1989 and 1978.
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph Vineyards, Wines, Winemaking
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph owns 60.5 hectares of vines located in Chateauneuf du Pape. One of the largest land holders in the Chateauneuf du Pape appellation, they use 54 hectares for the production of red wine. 6.5 hectares are used to to grow white wine grapes. The best parts of the Vieux Telegraph vineyards are situated in the La Crau sector, with its terroir of very, rocky soils with small pebbles, stones, red clay and sand. In fact, the surface of the vineyard is made from pure rocks and stones. It’s amazing to see!
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph produces 2 red Chateauneuf du Pape wines and 2 Chateauneuf du Pape white wines.
Domaine du Vieux Telegraphe is the flagship wine of Les Vignobles Brunier. Vieux Telegraph is always produced from the estates oldest vines. Vieux Telegraph comes from fruit planted in La Crau with a terroir that is littered with nothing but various, large and small rocks and stones in the soil. The vineyard is one of the largest on the contiguous parcels in the La Crau lieu-dit. Vieux Telegraph is usually a blend of 65% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre, 10% Cinsault and 10% Syrah.
The production of Vieux Telegraph remains traditional. The grapes are destemmed in the majority of cases, which comes out to being close to 60% or more of the harvest the majority of the time. One consideration they are concerned with is, if destemming could break the skins. If the skins are fragile, that impacts the amount of destemming they would perform that vintage.The grapes are hand harvested and moved by gravity flow into the vatting room for fermentation where young and old vines are separated and placed into short, 100 hectoliter, oak barrels for maceration and fermentation.
While fruit younger than 25 years is fermented separately from older vines, all the varietals are fermented in the same vats. Next, the wine is moved into concrete vats for 9 months before their being aged in 70 hectoliter foudres. The production of Vieux Telegraph is one of the largest in the entire Chateauneuf du Pape appellation at more than 16,000 cases per year
Le Telegramme is a blend of 90% Grenache with 10% Mourvedre. Le Telegramme is made predominantly from the estate’s youngest vines, which are on average close to 40 years of age. The wine is aged in vat and foudres for 15 months before bottling. Prior to the 2002 vintage, Le Telegramme was named Vieux Mas de Papes.
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph Blanc is made from a blend of 40% Clairette, 30% Grenache Blanc, 15% Roussanne and 15% Bourboulenc. The wine is aged in a combination of foudres, demi muids and new, French oak barrels for 9 months. The production is close to 2,000 cases per year.
Domaine du Vieux Telegraphe Le Telegramme Blanc is produced for the American market. The wine is a blend of 40% Roussanne, 30% Grenache Blanc, 20% Bourboulenc and 10% Picpoul. The wine is aged in tank for 7 months. The production is limited to about 350 cases per year.
Serving and Decanting Domaine du Vieux Telegraph with Wine, Food Pairing Tips
Domaine du Vieux Telegraph is best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift. Young vintages can be popped and poured, or decanted for an hour so. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume. Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment. Domaine du Vieux Telegraph is best served with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised, stewed dishes, sausage and cassoulet. Domaine du Vieux Telegraph is also good with Asian dishes, hearty fish courses like tuna, mushrooms pasta, eggplant and tomatoes.
The white wine of Domaine du Vieux Telegraph is best served with a myriad of different seafood dishes, shellfish, crab, lobster, sushi, sashimi, chicken, pork and veal, as well as Asian cuisine.
The Brunier family also own another vineyard in the Chateauneuf du Pape appellation, la Roquete, which produces “Piedlong”. In addition, Domaine Vieux Telegraph has vines in the Gigondas appellation where they own Domaine les Pallieres in a partnership with Kermit Lynch, the well-known American importer. Les Pallieres makes 2 wines, les Racines, which comes from their oldest vines and Terraces de Diable, which is produced from vines located on the limestone terraces in the appellation. Their Le Vieux Telegraph Pigeoulet de Brunier is a Vin de Pays that comes from unclassified vines in the Vaucluse appellation and is made with both red wine grapes and white wine grape varieties. In the Cotes du Ventoux they produce Vieux Telegraph Megaphone.
The industrious Brunier family also makes wine in the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon with Massaya.
Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe Wine Tasting Notes
16 Vintages 88493 Views Sort Vintage Rating
2013 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Really strong for the vintage, there is wealth of black raspberries, herbs and kirsch, paired with silky smooth textures and a fresh, sweet, peppery, kirsch finish. Produced from a blend of 65% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 15% Mourvedre and 5% Cinsault.
Sep 7, 2015points - Tasted 2567 Views
2013 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe Télégramme ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Wild strawberry with herbs, smooth tannins and a soft, short and sweet, fresh, cherry note in the finish. The wine was made using a blend of 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, 6% Mourvedre and 4% Cinsault.
Sep 7, 2015points - Tasted 2685 Views
2012 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Medium/full bodied, fresh, bright, lively wine which is still young and a little tight. With air, and effort, the kirsch, black raspberry, tapenade, thyme and garrigue began to develop and show itself. This needs a few more years in the bottle.
Jun 2, 2016points - Tasted 3842 Views
2011 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Medium bodied, forward and quite easy to taste today. The elegant, fresh kirsch, garrigue, peppery strawberry and olive character is already coming through loud and clear. Not a wine to age, this is perfect for early drinking pleasure.
May 22, 2017points - Tasted 1969 Views
2010 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
With ripe, juicy, red plum, black raspberry, pepper, earth and green olive notes, this full bodied, concentrated, beefy Southern Rhone has a lot to offer. With time, when the tannins soften and the wine evolves, this should offer a much better tasting experience.
Jan 2, 2014points - Tasted 7311 Views
2009 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Youthful, medium bodied, fresh, dominated by its cherry and garrigue nose, the wine is well made, but it lacks that extra special something that really carries through.
Aug 11, 2014points - Tasted 5067 Views
2007 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Dark ripe berries, cherry, jam and spicy aromatics open to a lush, forward styled Chateauneuf du Pape with the structure to age and ample, soft, ripe, red fruits that make it fun to drink today.
Mar 11, 2015points - Tasted 11749 Views
Tight and hard to get a handle on, with air and intense swirling, spicy black cherry aromatics could be found, Medium bodied and bright, the strawberry filled finish felt light and short. This is not a bad wine. It just lacked excitement.
Jan 21, 2011points - Tasted 13812 Views
2006 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Concentrated, tannic and structured, this classic styled wine has a core of fresh, peppery, red berries, earth and herbs. A few more years should help the wine develop more nuances.
Nov 21, 2014points - Tasted 4542 Views
2005 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Strong wine here, with ample ripe dark red fruits, spice, garrigue, jam and kirsch. The wine is rich, round and full bodied, leaving with a finish packed with fresh red and black cherries.
May 31, 2014points - Tasted 5058 Views
2004 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Medium bodied, fresh, lively, earthy, kirsch, black cherry and herbs are right where they need to be in the nose, and on the palate. You can definitely enjoy this wine with pleasure.
Dec 31, 2016points - Tasted 3202 Views
2001 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Strawberry, kirsch and earth, rustic and peppery, full bodied and structured, this can be drunk now or held for potential further development.
May 11, 2012points - Tasted 4769 Views
1998 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
So much better than the previous bottle, tasted years ago. This is a beauty! All the sweet, juicy kirsch, peppery, black raspberry, earth, herbs and weight, density, length and complexity you could ask for in a Chateauneuf du Pape.
Feb 24, 2017points - Tasted 3362 Views
Dark ruby color with earthy, tar, jammy black fruit and fresh cracked pepper scents. Concentrated, dense but without any special reason to like the wine. At the end of the day, it was dull.
Dec 15, 2004points - Tasted 2831 Views
1995 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Medium weight, simple and boring.
Oct 28, 2005points - Tasted 2119 Views
1993 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Based on the vintage, this fully mature Chateauneuf du Pape is showing much better than expected. Medium bodied, and lacking the intensity of a great vintage, the red berries are fresh, clean feminine. This is not a wine to hold.
Nov 29, 2014points - Tasted 2785 Views
1988 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Vegetative aromas with green pepper, herbs, mushrooms and white pepper scents. Full bodied with a slightly chalky bitter finish. Some fruit, but mostly disappointing.
Aug 4, 2004points - Tasted 1553 Views
1978 Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe La Crau ( Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
Filled with fresh cracked pepper, gariggue, kirsch, herbes, fennel and black raspberries with a melange of spice, this rich, full bodied, charmingly, rustic, spice filled wine ends with a long, fresh, powerful, pure, cherry liqueur finish. This fully mature Chateauneuf du Pape remains a sublime tasting experience for lovers of old Chateauneuf du Pape. Believe it or not, this has at least another decade of life to look forward to. This is best vintage of Vieux Telegraph I’ve ever tasted! It's almost impossible to fathom how young this wine was showing after more than 3 decades of aging.
Sep 27, 2011points - Tasted 4163 Views
From the color, aromatics and taste, I would have thought this wine was at least 10 years younger. The perfume blended garrigue with dark cherries, pepper and earth. The finish was long, clean and pure. While the wine did not improve with air, it remained at the same level for 2 hours. This might be one of the best 78 Chateauneuf du Papes available today.
Aug 6, 2007points - Tasted 2627 Views
Birckish ruby color. Notes of spice, cinnamon, pepper, jammy blackberries, cherries, raspberries and herbs. Full bodied, silky entry. Very Burgundian in style. Soft, elegant plummy fruit on the palate. Continued improving in the glass. Wow, what a treat! Steve Levin purchased this on release for $6.00
Aug 4, 2004points - Tasted 2480 Views