Posts with the label "latour"


Bordeaux 2018 - The Wine Advocate scores are in

Bordeaux 2018 - The Wine Advocate scores are in

Wednesday 24th April 2019
by Tom Jenkins

Many will remember waiting enthusiastically for the Wine Advocate to drop through the letterbox, or for a poor resolution scan to be emailed from the States, via Bordeaux. The age of the internet has made distribution more equitable and efficient, but maybe some of the romance and thrill has ebbed away. 

Anyway, enough nostalgia, the scores are in and it’s fair to say that Lisa Perrotti-Brown is a big fan. Her report echoes our thoughts on this magical vintage – extreme peaks and a bit of mediocrity. It’s a fascinating read. For those who do not subscribe, we have quoted some of the most salient bits below. We have also listed the 12 potential 100 point wines.

‘In this vintage of extremes, a producer undaunted by flirting with disaster and with a bit of luck on his/her side could well have sailed over the finish line to glory with all the flair and panache of Alain Prost. Or they could have cartwheeled down the track, combusting into a ball of flames. 2018 offers us the thrill of victory for a number of wineries, the agony of defeat for a few and a whole lot of also-rans…

Bordeaux 2018 - A Roller Coaster Vintage

Bordeaux 2018 - A Roller Coaster Vintage

Monday 15th April 2019
by Tom Jenkins

There were no magic micro-climates in 2018. This simple analysis of the vintage is the same from St Estephe to Castillon. This is one of the great turn-around stories, from despair to elation, but it was anything but straightforward. Nicolas Audebert from Rauzan Segla and Canon coined it the ‘Grand Huit’, or a rollercoaster. Even when summer arrived, this brought its own challenges. Water stress is necessary to make great red wines, however, those without clay subsoils were at risk of hydric stress and the dangers of blocked maturity. 

After a natural crop thinning by virtue of mildew, the vines were not carrying an abundance of fruit. Most vignerons didn’t do much in the way of green harvests and many did minimal canopy thinning. What was on the vine was very healthy with thick skins and wonderful potential. 

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 2015 - Day three,  It’s grim up north… far from it!

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2015 - Day three, It’s grim up north… far from it!

Friday 8th April 2016
by Tom Jenkins

We started up north with a St Estephe trio: Calon Segur, Montrose and Cos d’Estournel. 

Now much has already been said about the weekend of the Medoc marathon – some vignerons in these parts are blaming the runners for the rain. It happened, there’s no point in denial, about 120 mm fell on the Northern Medoc over the weekend of the 12th and 13th of September. It changed the profile of the vintage in St Estephe, but it most certainly didn’t ruin the quality. These wines are all highly successful, elegant wines, which perhaps lack a little of the exuberance and opulence other communes displayed, but they should by no means be dismissed, they are classical, beautifully structured and most alluring. 

A First Class Dinner – The 1996s at 20

A First Class Dinner – The 1996s at 20

Monday 1st February 2016
by Tom Jenkins

Opening and drinking the hallowed wines of Bordeaux’s ‘First Growths’ is always an event. These magnificent estates have graced the tables of the great and the good for centuries and continue to hold an appeal like no other wines from the Medoc or Graves.

1996 is one of our favourite vintages of the last few decades. It seems like only yesterday that England was losing to Germany on penalties and Dolly the sheep was born. It was a year that favoured the gravel terroirs and Cabernets of the Medoc, producing reserved, classic wines -  wines with structure and complexity. Following the commercially attractive 1995s, the 1996s were not universally well received, although their then expensive release prices now look very equitable…  Now at the ripe old age of 20, we decided this was an anniversary we definitely wanted to celebrate.

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