Posts with the label "vieux chateau certan"


The Vintage Report: Bordeaux 2017 - A Darwinian Vintage

The Vintage Report: Bordeaux 2017 - A Darwinian Vintage

Monday 16th April 2018
by Tom Jenkins

In 2017 there’s no avoiding the ‘F’ word. It has been more than a quarter of a century since frost last devastated a Bordeaux crop, so it is inevitable that this was a major talking point. However, cruel as the frost was on some, it doesn’t really determine the quality of the vintage.

Life isn’t fair and neither is nature. As the earth gets warmer, flowering gets earlier, and the risk of frost damage becomes greater. Not many winemakers can recall the frosts of 1991 first hand, but their legacy is still haunting. When the meteorologists predicted a cold blast on the nights of the 27th and 28th of April, there was a genuine sense of panic. Most with the means deployed bougies, wind turbines, helicopters, lit hay, took whatever measures they could - the rest left it to chance.

Bordeaux 2015: Beauties and the Beast

Bordeaux 2015: Beauties and the Beast

Saturday 10th March 2018
by Tom Jenkins

Not even the ‘Beast from the East’ could dampen spirits at our annual Bordeaux tasting. Our stoic growers packed their finest winter woollies and put on another great show.

The Royal Society of Chemistry in Burlington House played host for the 2015s, and for those, and there were many, who braved the snow, were treated to a spectacular selection from this luxurious vintage. There were star wines wherever you looked, the sumptuous Calon Segur proved that those who wrote off St Estephe were a little hasty – this was packed with charming sweet fruit and rippled with muscle. Domaine de Chevalier was gloriously decadent and polished, the Mouton brace of d’Armailhac and Clerc Milon were a sheer joy, brimming with lavish fruit, they are glorious expressions of this vintage.

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2016 - Day one, The Right Stuff

UGC Week: Bordeaux 2016 - Day one, The Right Stuff

Monday 3rd April 2017
by Tom Jenkins

Our custom is to start on the Right Bank and ‘avoid the crowds’. Monday morning started with an early appointment with Denis Durantou at L’Eglise Clinet. Saintayme, Le Chenade, Cruzelles and Montlandrie were all spectacular, possibly the best range we’ve seen from Denis, boasting wonderful purity, lots of intensity and great balance. 

The Pomerols were a step up again; both very profound and exciting wines. Bravo Denis. Next stop was Le Pin to meet Jacques and George Thienpont. L’If continues to go from strength to strength, a St Emilion with real verve and a nervous tension that delights the taste buds. Le Pin is very grown up and muscular, less flamboyant than normal, but still packing a kaleidoscope of decadent fruits and seriously impressive tannins. This was becoming a tough morning and it was about to get tougher… Alexandre and Guillaume Thienpont presented the magnificent Vieux Chateau Certan 2016. They are rightly proud, this is a very handsome VCC full of breed. Did I mention that this was hard work? Next stop was Petrus for a very important ‘initiation ceremony’. We feared that the J&B bulldog, donated a few years ago, was about to get the snip, but this was actually a huge honour for our humble hound – he was made the official mascot for the forthcoming Petrus vintage. The wine itself is stunning and quite unique. It’s a powerful Petrus that harks back to greats of ’89 and ’90,  with a hint of exotic spice, yet all wrapped up in the suavest of tannins – it really is quite moving and deeply impressive – chapeau!

Bordeaux 2014 - Glittering on the red carpet…

Bordeaux 2014 - Glittering on the red carpet…

Monday 6th March 2017
by Tom Jenkins

Coining a vintage ‘classic’ or ‘one that will appeal to British palates’ can be laced with euphemism. But with the 2014s, it never has it been so true. We loved the style of these wines when we tasted from barrel and now that they are in bottle, they are looking more ravishing than ever.

Tasting a star-studded line-up of 2014s at BAFTA on Tuesday evening, more than confirmed that these wines press all the right buttons.

We were delighted to be joined by representatives from Château Lafleur, Château La Fleur-Petrus, Château Belair-Monanage, Château L’Eglise-Clinet, Vieux Château-Certan, L’If, Château Canon, Château Rauzan-Segla, Château Pichon-Lalande, Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste, Château Haut Batailley and Château Calon-Segur. With such a list of celebrity wine-makers and revered Châteaux it would be unfair and improper to hand out gongs – each wine from the humble Grand Village to the momentous Lafleur shone.

A Le Pin dinner with  Jacques Thienpont

A Le Pin dinner with Jacques Thienpont

Tuesday 28th February 2017
by Chadwick Delaney

Last night was a rare privilege.  Our private dining room in St. James’s, the host of many truly wonderful evenings over the years, had the pleasure of welcoming Jacques Thienpont over from Bordeaux for the very first time. 

Jacques flew in to meet some of our customers who have been buying Le Pin.  It was quite the gathering.  All deep admirers of this iconic Bordeaux estate. We started the evening with a small glass of L’If ’14.  Jacques’ little St Emilion baby as he called it.  It showed a lovely balance with pure, silky fruits and was a first experience of L’If for many of those attending. 

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