Posts with the label "chateau gazin"


Southwold: Bordeaux 2014 – very good, but not quite great

Southwold: Bordeaux 2014 – very good, but not quite great

Monday 19th February 2018
by Tom Jenkins

Last week, the great and the good of the British wine trade including journalists, merchants and multitude of MWs decamped to our new Southwold-on-Thames venue to dissect the 2014s.

After the demoralising 2013s, there was a palpable sense of anticipation. We have always admired this vintage for its classical style and elegance. As is custom, we start with several flights of St Emilion. The flights seem to get longer each year and usually feature unfamiliar names that leave us pondering, ‘why?’ There was no such bafflement this year. Vignerons appear to have used a lighter touch and coupled with the natural acidity of the vintage, the wines have a real sense of cohesion and energy. Top marks went to Francois Mitjavile’s Tertre Roteboeuf, such an unmistakable wine, there’s really no need to disguise its identity… My preference was Canon, John Kolasa’s last year at the helm – this is as classical and super-refined, and a mighty impressive showing from Troplong Mondot.

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2016 - Day three: The Mighty Medoc

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2016 - Day three: The Mighty Medoc

Friday 28th April 2017
by Tom Jenkins

Starting at Chateau Lafite at 9am set the bar pretty high. The Duhart Milon was superb, pure Cabernet class, even the Carruades was spectacular, dense and concentrated, and then we got to the grand vin, an ethereal, subtly perfumed, glorious Lafite; athletic, graceful, powerful and handsome. There’s absolutely no doubt that this is a top notch Lafite and one of the wines of the vintage. 

Next stop Mouton Rothschild and an equally impressive range, but stylistically quite different. By comparison, the Mouton stable was all primal power and complexity. The d’Armailhac is fun and filled with fruit, the Clerc Milon is a big step up in quality, the fruit is much more profound and the tannins are very classy. Petit Mouton is big and brooding and the grand vin is a wine of epic proportions. As with all great Moutons, this is slow to reveal itself, it is deeply introverted, but with time and coaxing it starts to reveal the power of this terroir. This has serious length, and while at this stage it doesn’t quite have the grace of the Lafite, we believe this is a seriously impressive Mouton that will continue to grow in stature – mighty impressive.

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2016 - Day two, Moving on

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2016 - Day two, Moving on

Tuesday 4th April 2017
by Tom Jenkins

We wrapped up the Right Bank with a few morning visits. Our tasting at Chateau Teyssier was perhaps a little disappointing. The Teyssier itself is good and honest and there’s plenty to admire. 

The flagship Le Dome seems to have taken a backward step. Recent vintages have lent more towards elegance and a less-extracted style. It seemed like the 2016 was a super-charged, massive Le Dome, although probably made with greater precision than wines of the past. The tannins are big and gravelly – time will tell if this works.

Frederic Faye welcomed us to Figeac, an estate reborn. In truth, the wines never really went off the boil, but their over-ambitious pricing in 2009 and 2010 lost them a few friends. Now working with superstar oenologist, Michel Rolland, the wines are better than ever and are becoming much sought after. We loved the 2016 and it sent us on our way to La Pointe for the UGC Pomerol in good spirits. Alas, this mood was short lived. The UGCs on the Right Bank are becoming a bit of an irrelevance for us. So many of the top estates have excused themselves, there’s only a handful of wines to taste, and many of these don’t cut the mustard. Gazin was the standout star in Pomerol – a really handsome, serious wine with a good future ahead. One of the estates that has headed for the door was La Conseillante, so we dropped in for a quick unscheduled stop, and we were very glad that we did. After a string of disappointments (for us anyway), the 2016 sees Conseillante back to its very best – a really classy, refined Pomerol with just the right amount of make-up; it’s authentic, pretty and very well groomed.

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2015 - Day two, traversing the Gironde

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2015 - Day two, traversing the Gironde

Thursday 7th April 2016
by Tom Jenkins

Our first appointment of the day was with Cyril Thienpont, son of Nicolas and nephew of Jacques. Larcis Ducasse and Pavie Macquin are seriously impressive expressions of their terroir, brimming with vibrant fruit and wrapped in sumptuous tannins. 

Beauséjour Duffau Lagarrosse is mighty impressive too. Perhaps it is not quite as much to our taste as the Larcis and Pavie Macquin, but it is hard not to be enthralled by its exuberance and stature. Bravo. We took the short drive over the plateau to L’If, where we were welcomed by Jacques. Last year we were awestruck by the strides made at this estate. The 2015 is possibly even more glorious! Pomerol UGC was almost bereft of wines, so this didn’t take long… Chateau Gazin continues its fine run of form with a thoroughly assured 2015: subtle, charming, classy Pomerol. Nothing else really did it for us.