The following are the raw tasting notes for chateaux from the Margaux appellation for properties A-L. For Margaux properties M-Z click here – the volume of notes necessitated the split as the pages were becoming too large. The main focus is on the last seven vintages that have been tasted [several times] in the past four years through either the UGCB tastings or the MW Institute tastings. I hope they are of interest. Click here for tasting notes on the wines of the Haut-Médoc, St Estèphe, Pauillac, St Julien, Moulis & Listrac, Pessac-Léognan, St Emilion and Pomerol.
For Margaux related blog posts click on the following: Bordeaux Primeurs 2013: Margaux; Bordeaux 2009 Revisited: Margaux; Bordeaux 2011 In Bottle: Margaux; Bordeaux Primeurs 2012: Margaux; Bordeaux 2010 In Bottle: Margaux; Bordeaux 2008 At Four Years: Margaux; Bordeaux 2011 Primeurs: Margaux; Bordeaux 2007 Four Years On: Margaux; Bordeaux 2009 In Bottle: Margaux; Bordeaux 2010 Primeurs: Margaux; Bordeaux 2009: Rich Wines In MargauxChâteau Angludet, Margaux
- 2015 Deep colour; tight to rim; purple; summer fruits; quite loaded here; blackcurrants; fresh cherry; violet perfume; fresh entry on the palate; plenty of fruit and spicy notes; freshness too; very pure Margaux; nice sap on the finish. Appetizing style. Excellent Angludet. [40% Merlot, 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot 13.6% alc]. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93+
- 2014 Deep and saturated colour; tight to rim; full and loaded with fruit on the nose; extract; lots of matter; creamy blackcurrant fruit and black cream – attractive; good matter and depth; perfume on the palate; nicely balanced. Some grip and density; structure too. Good effort. Drink 2019-2030. 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 11% Petit Verdot. 13.5% alc. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 88-90+
- 2013 Mid-depth; glossy look; vibrant edge; some fragrance and violet perfume’ blackcurrants; quite elegant styled but unforced; attractive soft entry; easy; some beauty here; elegant and nicely judged. Good effort. One to consider in 2013. [56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, 12% Petit Verdot, 31 hl/ha, 12.8% alc]. UGCB April 2014. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88+
- 2012 Mid depth; slightly reductive edge; blackcurrants and spice on aeration; palate has finesse; soft and easy with elegant tannin. Ready to drink. Drink 2015-2025. 87 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Mid depth; some purple at edge; creamy tones; nice freshness; elegance; Cabernet here; cleaner than before; ripe entry, harmony, elegance; polish and finesse; attractive elegant, mid-weight wine 89-91+ UGC Thursday April 11, 2013 [Earlier note] Mid depth; stalky blackcurrant notes, little ‘gout de chais’/reductive note but this should clear up; more freshness and perfume on the palate; reductive notes again, some spice. Slightly awkward sample. 40% Merlot, 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Petit Verdot. 87-89 UGC Tuesday April 9, 2012
- 2011 Mid depth; spicy note, some blackcurrant tones; elegant palate; reasonably round and balanced; some grip and acid. Much more enthralling bottles of Angludet can be found in 2010 and 2009. Drink 2016-2021. 86 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Mid depth; primary fruit – cassis – but spiky and pure; this will mellow and develop; nice purity and a little honey at the very edge; ripe nevertheless; fruit again here some honeyed notes; mid-weight, acid and sappy palate. Angludet can be amazing value, but this sample is a bit disappointing. I think I trust it to come round but it’s not quite doing it for me at the moment. 86-87 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Deep and dense; some savour, strong nose; pure blackcurrants and black cherry; espresso notes; settling nicely; freshness and life here alongside the purity of fruit. Looks very pure and fresh. 90/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Very deep and concentrated colour; quite strong and pure; depth to the nose with substance; cassis and blackcurrants; intense; full, good density and precise on the palate; fresh and will work well. Nicely judged wine. 89-91+/100 Tasted 5 April 2011.[Second tasting] Deep and dense; lots of ripe fruit on the nose; blackcurrants, violets; quite saturated and will be beautiful, very pure and unadorned with oak or extractive hijinks – pure. Violets on the palate too, lots of ripe, bright fruit, fresh. Good grip too and a fresh finish. Excellent wine 90-92/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 UGC
- 2009 Deep and healthy looking; blackcurrant and some plum; pure; nicely balanced palate with lots of depth and structure beneath. A fraction closed but nicely balanced and true to Margaux. A fine effort. Drink 2016-2029. 90 MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Vibrant at edge; mid depth; legs; quite stalky blackcurrant nose; fresh and vibrant in style; some undergrowth and forest floor; nice palate; mid weight; little subdued at present with tannin on the finish but will be good. 90+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Inky purple at edge; raw nose; fruit, plums, violets, some vegetal notes; still early days here; palate ripe however with mid palate richness; some concentration – sappy and ripe; bit raw on the nose but very good mid palate; some coffee on the finish. Good. Should settle. 88-90?/100 [Second tasting] Great depth to the nose; very ripe, fruit driven nose; some strong blackcurrants; freshness here to the nose; palate some structure and freshness along with the ripe flavours; not as polished or as round as the Brane Cantenac but more positive and fresher than Cantenac Brown. Excellent effort 90+/100 Tasted 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 They have just dropped the d’ here, so it’s just simply Angludet now so that should march them up the batting order at tastings at least. Quite dark; opaque at centre; some chocolate and mocha notes; palate quirte sweet and sturdy; some violets here. Chewy and dense but maybe lacks a bit of life. Goodish. 86+/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid red; bit lightweight and angular; lacks flesh and quite dry and tannic and feels hollow. Acid and tannins stand out. May come together and put on weight but a disappointment. 82/100 UGC Oct ’09
- 2006 Mid depth, deeper at the core; some earth and tar on the nose but a bit subdued; some chocolate and mocha but all a bit secondary; mid weight palate; good intensity and extract – will need time here. Quite tannic finish. Feels like the 1986. 86-87/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
- 2005 Deep colour, earthy red at edge; brooding and deep nose of plums, damsons and real violet fragrance; underneath this is a savoury meaty edge, a cracking wine in prospect here; opened up in the glass with toasty nose, perfume and pain grille notes; palate sweet entry with concentration but also supple to a degree, very nicely done. Very round and fine tannins and excellent length mark this out as one of the best Angludet’s ever I’d imagine. 90-92/100 Sept ’10
- 2003 Mid-red, hangs in the glass ripe nose, typical of ’03, some earth, chocolate and graphite but also strong blackcurrants and violets – pure and fine – mid-weight palate. 88+/100 June ‘07
- 1993 Earthy red; light; faint oak background; soft on palate; some concentration but lacks intensity. 82/100 Nov ‘95
- 1986 Mid red; tinges of brown; tobacco; quite beefy and roast meat notes; also truffles and mushrooms and undergrowth on the palate; quite tannic; drying out a touch with coarseness to the tannins. 86/100 Oct ‘09 [Earlier note] Brick red; some cedar, but also beef, earth and tobacco. Attractive palate, soft and mellow; fully mature. Starting to tip into old age. 86-87/100 April’ 07
Château Bellevue de Tayac
- 2015 Mid depth; spicy, cake like qualities; some plums; quite sexy; some lift; supple and round palate with a soft, easy finish. Attractive and forward. Tasted Cru Bourgeois 7/4/16. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89
- 2014 Mid depth; some creamy oak and black fruits; worked style but nicely done; perfume; black cherry, plum and perfume notes again; not over extracted; soft tannins; purity on the finish. Has elegance and texture. [70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot, 4 ha]. Drink 2019-2025. Tasted Cru Bourgeois 2 April, 2015. 86-88
- 2013 Mid depth; deepish core; some violet lift and elegance; feels Margaux; elegant cool flavours on the palate with some spice. Lacks a bit in the middle but not pushed. Cool and elegant. Tasted JL Thunevin April 2014. Drink 2018-2026. 85-87
- 2012 Very deep and saturated; little more freshness and lift; fresh; ripe and pretty lush; elegance and freshness. 50% Merlot, 50% Cabernet Sauvignon 88-90. Tasted with JL Thunevin, Friday April 12, 2013.
Château Boyd-Cantenac, Cru Classé
- 2010 Deep looking; lifted, earthy blackcurrant aromatics with plummy spice tones; roasted coffee bean notes [oak]; has fruit and quite seductive; good fruit on the palate with quite a bit of oak present but also undergrowth and earthy tones; little dry on the finish but this is substantial Boyd-Cantenac with quite a bit of chew to the tannin. Reminds me of their very good 2005. Drink 2017-2030. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’14
- 2009 Deep and saturated looking; blackcurrants, plums, toast and coffee bean notes; intense; full and lush on the palate with lots of saturation and extract and real depth. Blackcurrants and spicy oak. Drink 2015-2030. 92+ MW Institute, Nov ’13.
- 2005 Mid black, saturated; roast coffee beans, violets and cassis, deep and complex – impressive stuff; palate pent up but wonderful intensity and elegance. Will open out but quite seductive at present too. Nice tension between the richness and the elegance. Really excellent. 90-92+/100 Nov ’09
Château Brane-Cantenac, Cru Classé
- 2015 Deep and saturated looking; healthy; lovely purity to the nose; layers; Cabernet dominates; cassis; blackcurrants; black cherry; fresh and ripe; lovely palate; some tension; pure and cool overall; pretty seductive wine; some floral notes; cool and sleek with nice extract, depth and length. Lovely Brane-Cantenac. [70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 1% Carmenere, 13.6%alc]. Drink 2022-2035. 93-95+
- 2014 Deep colour; purple at edge; stalky blackcurrant Cabernet fruit; black cherry and blackcurrant tones; opens up in the glass; freshness here; lots of blackcurrant fruit here; strong and fresh on the palate; purity and acidity. Clean and fresh with matter and extract. Very good effort. Expect this to fill out. 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc. 13% alc. Drink 2020-2030. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 91-93+
- 2013 Mid depth; glossy; some spice and earthy tones with a little streak of green pepper; blackcurrants on the palate; elegance; not too forced; sappy and grippy at end. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88
- 2012 Mid depth; attractive perfumed aromatics with some coffee bean hints; blackcurrants and menthol tones; polished palate – very good Margaux; elegance and layers here. Good length. Drink 2015-2026. 91+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Very good colour; deep and saturated; dense to edge; violets, layers, very composed and excellent manners; lushness too; quite tight on the palate but obvious depth and layers; some earth, little undergrowth; structure beneath but very attractive overall; grip and chew on the end. Consistent notes. 92-93+ UGC Thursday April 11, 2013 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; very fresh and elegant; vivacious on the nose; real delicacy here; very attractive; palate very flattering with real delicacy and lush flavours from what appears to be extremely attractive Merlot in the blend; very good wine with some grip at the end. Nicely done. 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot. 92-93+ Tasted UGC Tuesday April 9, 2013.
- 2011 Mid depth; saturated at centre; violet perfume – yippee! Spicy blackcurrant tones alongside some coffee bean and mocha notes; complex with some undergrowth notes; blackcurrants, with spice and coffee tones; tannins have some bite but palate not too sappy and acid. Very nice length. Impressive for the vintage and the commune. Drink 2016-2026. 90+ UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep, earthy purple at edge; sappy, earthy note, hint of green pepper; violets here [hurrah!], some coffee bean – this will be an attractive nose; palate has freshness and fruit – cool Cabernet and some real perfume too. Has bite but depth and chew and could work really well. 37% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, 56.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 0.5% Carmenere] 90-92 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Deep and saturated looking; seam of beautifully pure blackcurrant fruit; ripe and clean; elegant and perfumed; very voluptuous and caressing on the palate; really terrific; grows and grows; lots of layers here which uncoil wonderfully; real power to this alongside the elegance. Long spicy finish. Excellent effort. Beautiful Margaux. Drink 2015-2035. 95 MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep looking; nice cassis, pure, some violet lift with earthy undergrowth; elegant palate, layers and nice tension here; ripe fruit, good acid and structure here with bite at the end. Quite a bit of tannin. 90+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and saturated colour; some reductive notes; some violets too; cassis; palate quite grippy and backward; little alkward needs to settle and blossom a bit, but not over extracted. 87-89/100 Tasted 5 April 2011. [Second tasting] Deep and saturated; floral and perfumed, fresh blackcurrants and violets, quite seductive; some grip on the palate, blackcurrants again, some coffee; elegance with intensity. Some chew at the back. Much better sample. 90-92/100 [62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc 13.5 alc] Tasted 7 April 2011 UGC
- 2009 Deep and saturated; tight to rim; leafy blackcurrants; earthy; herbal lift; real density and saturation on the palate – very full – but there is structure here and some freshness on the end. Drink 2016-2030. 93+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deepish; less thick in the glass than some; vibrant cassis and blackcurrant; has some meat here too; perfume too; leafy notes; blackcurrant notes on palate; very attractive; real Margaux charm; good grip; some coffee and mocha on the finish. Will open further [and I may be underrating this] 91-93+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Dense supple attractive nose, violets, perfumed; very attractive nose, some coffee; little geranium here; seductive; palate medium weight; soft and supple but with intensity; very feminine; some coffee and mocha with the perfume. Palate round, supple; good length 90+/100. [Second tasting] Fresh; blackcurrants and mocha here; very seductive and ripe palate; nice and flattering; elegant yet intense with perfume and violets coming through on the palate. Attractive & elegant with intensity – very good wine and good length here. 90-92+/100 30th March & 1st April 2009.
- 2008 Mid depth; some red at edge; some chalk, blackcurrant notes and earth; chewy blackcurrants, spices some dryness and acid – structured. Some flesh here but nevertheless feels a tad hollow. May come round as there may be just enough ingredients here. 87 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Mid red; purple at edge; some stalky blackcurrant notes; feels a bit angular and tannic on the palate; quite chewy, not the most appealing [2nd] Slightly dumb [fresh bottle]; elegant palate with some savour and grip with some length but tannic at the end. Needs to settle. 86-88/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid depth; darkish; some coffee and leaf; earthy and some bell pepper/capsicum notes; feels a bit tight, angular and not at all generous; thin and mean though not over extracted. May come good with another year or so? 86?/100 MW Institute Nov ’11
- 2006 Mid red, some depth; earthy, leafy, reminds me a little of d’Issan, quite intense, blackcurrants earth and chocolate at the back; good blackcurrant intensity with some leaf; some spice and undergrowth. Attractive and earthy Margaux 88+/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
Château Cantenac Brown, Cru Classé
- 2015 Deep and saturated look; purple at edge; tight to rim; redcurrants and black fruits; pretty and voluptuous on the nose; nice entry on the palate; more creamy and round than usual; black cherry notes; harmony here this year. The first vintage at Cantenac Brown that is genuinely appealing at this stage. Evidence that they are stepping off the gas here in extraction terms. One to consider this year – depending on price. [61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot, 60% new oak, 13.8% alc]. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93+
- 2014 Deep and saturated colour; tight to the rim; some purple; nice creamy blackcurrant fruit; nicely handled [they have finally stepped off the gas here]; polished; glossy wine with depth; nice entry to the palate; softer and more caressing than expected; creamy blackcurrant fruit; some tannin but nicely proportioned; extract but ripe tannins and finally not over extracted. Good stuff. 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot 13.2% alc, 60% new oak. Drink 2010-2030. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 90-92+
- 2013 Deep colour; more extracted looking; resin on the nose with almost Italianate notes; little monolithic on the nose; wet concrete tones; very extracted style on the palate; quite tight with lots of acidity and grip which alongside the tannins makes for a currently very dry and puckering experience. Way too extractive of the delicate fruit to my palate. See how it goes down the line. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2018-2025. 83-85
- 2012 Deeply coloured; some concentration to the aromas; spicy; full palate; softer than usual and rounder; full and easy style; this is the most enjoyable Cantenac Brown I’ve had in years. Not pushed. Tasty. Some chew on the finish but settled. Drink 2015-2025. 89+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; tight to the edge; chalky, mineral nose; wet rocks; some plushness; slightly green streak somewhere; a plusher and lusher sample than before; not as tannic as before but green streak. Inconsistent notes. 86-88? Tasted Thursday April 11, 2013. [Earlier note] Deep and very extracted looking; lots of oak [someone remarked it smells like a white wine]; quite sublimated in feel; very thick and extractive palate – wow – Merlot 60% new oak – loads of tannin; feels very recipe wine making for me. Very dry and astringent on the finish. May settle but will always be chunky and lacking finesse. 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot. 86-88. Tasted UGC Tuesday April 9, 2013.
- 2011 Mid depth; little dumb and closed; some leaf and spice; warmth on the palate with chewy fruit; bit short on the finish. Tannic at the very end and a bit dry. Closed and rather sullen at present. Drink 2016-2026. 86? UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated look; ripe and lifted red fruit quite sexy with satin feel – showy; palate stoney, mineral notes but also ferocious wood tannin and dry feel to the palate. Very oaked and dry palate. Disjointed currently. Chewy and extracted but there is the fruit. See if it settles. 86-88? UGCB April 2012.
- 2010 Deeply coloured; dark core; some red fruits, dust and black fruit tones; liqourice; still dumber than Brane-Cantenac [and very differently styled]; solid feel to the palate; firm and structured wine; quite chewy fruit and tannin; feels extracted [though less so than formerly, so settling to a degree]. Masculine style of Margaux. Drink 2017-2035. 89 MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated look; thick black fruits with some liqourice; very ripe fruit, some marzipan and lift; some coffee; quite chewy, dense with lots of structured and grip. Big wine. Muscular and worked. Will have its followers – not me. 87/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and saturated; fragrant and attractive, violets; quite plush, feels like fine Margaux; perfumed; palate attractive with some blackcurrants, violet notes again with some rosehip; some grip here but nicely done. Elegant and intense. Much better than 2009. Excellent 91-93+ Tasted 5 April 2011 [Second tasting] Deep and intense; more concentration and intensity on the nose than Brane; riper and full; some violest; good density on the palate, quite unctuous and worked palate; quite thick palate with chew and extraction. [66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot 13.6 alc] 90-92+/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 UGC
- 2009 Deep red; some cream, fresh, little dumb on the palate and feels closed; nevertheless dense and chewy; tannic and a bit overdone possibly. Feels chewy and extracted at present. Hmmm. 88?/100 MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier] Deep inky; more rasiny and ripe fruit nose; less seductive than Brane; bigger and intense; less sophisticated nose; oak; intense though; palate intense; layered; good intense wine on palate; tannins supple but there is concentration and extraction. Very good intense style, maybe a bit rasiny and not feminine but intense and very ripe. Tannins fine. 90+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Second tasting] Deep, darker more extracted look; BLACK – bit of over-ripeness to the nose; slightly raisin-y note; very ripe palate, some hefty tannins at the back and signs of over-extraction. Lacks the freshness of the best wines. Quite chewy and tannic. Big, but not sophisticated. 88-90/100 Tasted 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Dense; very ripe nose, strawberries and jam quite fresh and lifted; quite a tough, tannic palate with lots of chewy fruit and tannin; extracted style; tannins at bit furry at the end. Solid and dense if tannic. Bit tough. 86/100 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Deepish, dark at core, saturated looking; earthy, peaty nose with smoke and some sweet oak and stalky blackcurrants too; ripe red fruits on the palate along with chewy blackcurrant fruit, stalks and lots of grip; still pretty angular and grippy with acid but the flesh is there at present. 87/100 [Earlier]Mid red; more leaf and blackcurrant; some cream; slightly leafy, weedy flavours; quite tannic and lacks flesh. 82/100 UGCB Oct ‘09
Château Dauzac, Cru Classé
- 2015 Deep and saturated look; purple at edge; pretty; emphasis on the fruit; creamy black cherry notes; some freshness alongside the blackcurrant jam tones; nice attack on the palate; good fruit; much more clarity than usual here; fruit is left to speak here rather than the winemaking; tight on the finish where the extract finally comes through; more measured and elegant Dauzac than usual – and all the better for it. [65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 13.5% alc]. Drink 2020-2030. 90-92
- 2014 Deep and saturated look; tight to the rim; toasty; liquorice; black fruits and vanilla; savoury meaty notes; resin from the oak but there is fruit; blackcurrants and black fruits [plums]; some oak too on the palate but mostly absorbed; good effort with some freshness despite the oak regime. Bright finish. Little chew on the end. [68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot]. Drink 2019-2028. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 87-89+
- 2013 Mid depth; thick aromatics dominated currently by toasty oak; some black fruits beneath; chewy and sturdy palate; solid at first, then dry and a little puckering on the finish. This may yet settle as there is quite a bit of fruit, still I’d wait and see. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2017-2025. 84-86
- 2012 Deep and saturated colour; tight to edge; quite lifted; slight parsnip note again; oak, apparent depth; palate a little less vegetal than earlier; lots of plush fruit and ripe Merlot; not too extracted but a chewy finish. 87-88 Tasted UGC Thursday April 11, 2013 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; vegetal nose; parsnips, earthy notes and equally lush in some ways [on the nose] very soft and easy palate; lush and lashings of oak and saturated flavours; not that bad in a thick, melded way but not sure about the vegetal note. Chewy finish. 37% Merlot, 63% Cabernet Sauvignon, 70% new oak 13% alc 85-87 Tasted UGC Tuesday April 9, 2013.
- 2011 Deep looking; deep and inky aromatics; thick and extracted on the palate which leaves the impression of a rather chewy and tannic wine. Not much fun. Drink 2015-2025. 84 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and dense; some prettiness, some stone fruit; red fruits and some black too – not unattractive; some wet rocks; palate ripe and lots here, if modern styled; chewy and dry on the finish. Puckering. Acid? 85-87? UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Pretty, some red fruits, some oak and marzipan notes; black fruits and liquorice; quite sturdy with lots of fruit and plenty of extract. Very drying at end with lots of oak influenced. Disjointed. Not my style. 86/100 [Earlier] Deep and saturated; toasty meaty nose; lots of substance here; tar and liquorice; ripe and layered; quite meaty and deep, not that bad, good density without overdoing the extraction. Grip. Very good but not traditional Margaux. 88+/100 Tasted 5 April 2011 at UGC. [Second tasting] Deep and saturated; vibrant, some cough mixture, jam, coffee and chocolate; cassis dominant; palate feels a bit forced and palate more oaky and disjointed than earlier. Some bitter tannins. Feels overdone? Sample variation here. If it settles 88?/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC
- 2009 Deep and saturated look; toasty blackcurrant and plummy notes; lots of fruit and reasonable depth with a fair dollop of spicy and toasty oak; dryness to the palate. Lots of fruit but rather extracted style with a rather heavy use of oak. Better than I though it would be but not my style. Drink 2015-2025. 87 MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Pretty saturated in colour; creamy notes; some cassis and fruit compote; oak and mocha tones; nice palate – this wine has settled down from what felt a raw monster primeur – quite meaty and still pretty tannic and chewy and extracted but more settled now. 88+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Very deep and inky; coffee and oak and extracted fruit nose; big and ripe nose; palate very big, some real ripeness but over extracted for me; reasonable concentration but feels over extracted. Stretched and overdone 86?/100 [Second tasting] Very intense coffee bean [toasty oak], palate very extracted and overdone. 86?/100 Tasted 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Deepish, quite dense looking; some earth, spice and mealy qualities; slightly reductive whiff; palate feels a bit hollow and overplayed. Hard edge to the tannins and palate. 84 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Deep red; quite sturdy nose, quite meaty with smoke and tar alongside red fruits and violets; palate quite settled and pretty good. Round. Not dry and tannic and feels that extraction has been quite nicely done. Pretty good effort. Good. 88/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Deepish; earthy red at edge; some spice, coffee, fresh blackcurrant notes without the leafy, peaty notes; extracted palate; tannin feels dry and chewy, starting to meld maybe, but inky certainly. Fraction short. 84/100 MW Institute Nov ’11 [Earlier] Big colour; as bright at the Chateau’s yellow label; quite dense and intense big nose; very big palate; fruity and intense but big dry tannins here too suggesting it might have been over-extracted. Unusual in the context of the tasting. May settle down into an interesting wine. 84-86?/100 UGC Oct ’09
- 2006 Quite vibrant, deep but alive; some oak resin, some strawberry some cassis and intensity; quite lifted; palate quite full and concentrated, not over extracted [thank God], palate quite full and concentrated, not over extracted here but chewy with chocolate and mocha notes; not that bad effort with warmth at the end. 86-88/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
Château Desmirail, Cru Classé
- 2015 Healthy colour; forward aromatics; spices; fruitcake and mineral notes; bright fruit on the palate; nicely melded; pain grillé notes; forward and early drinking Margaux; some extract on the finish but this will round out during elévage. Good Desmirail. [60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, 13% alc]. Drink 2020-2028. 88-90
- 2014 Deep and saturated look; dark at centre; purple at edge; earthy blackcurrant tones; little spicy note; savoury and fruit cake tones; forward; pure fruit; some cream; some extract and matter; some coarseness at the end of the palate; spice and oak; grip and acidity. Little chew on the finish. [57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, 42% new oak, 12.5% alc]. Drink 2019-2025. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 85-87
- 2013 Mid depth; some spice; little softer and rounder aromatically than some; tight and sappy. Bit thin on the end. Light certainly. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2016-2020. 83-85
- 2012 Mid depth; earthy; some development; forward style; easy; soft forward style with some undergrowth and blackcurrant tones; bit loose and rather light. Drink 2015-2020. 84 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and dense; lively at edge; spicy, attractive nose; fruit cake and spicy plum, little undercurrent of earth; earthy entry; modest palate already quite forward and enjoyable; soft and early maturing style. Overall attractive. 87-88+ Tasted UGC Thursday April 11, 2013 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; tight to the edge; some spice, oak and coffee bean; lifted and quite integrated; some perfume; easy entry, attractive mid palate; lacks a bit of tension on the finish. Also maybe a little too much oak? Not bad though. 54% Merlot and 46% Cabernet Sauvignon 12.2 degrees Alc 86-88 Tasted Tuesday, April 9, 2013
- 2011 Mid depth, clearer at centre; spicy, tobacco nose quite full and forward; full and easy palate; nicely done given the vintage. Quick maturing. Now-2021. 86 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; lift and honey and some sawn wood notes; little vegetal hint but red fruits here too, ripe and a bit thick and worked on the palate; lots of blackcurrants and ripeness but a rather thick, leaden-footed quality too. Easy enough with some chew. 86-87 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Deepish core; easy, some satin notes, red fruits and lifted resin characters; quite full palate; gutsy with spicy fruit, structured and chewy. Not a whole lot of flesh though but enough. Drink 2015-2025. 87 MWInstitute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deepish; dark core; spicey open nose; not unattractive; some earth and undergrowth and blackcurrant tones; leafy edge; earthy blackcurrants again on the palate, some spice and herbal notes and tobacco; quite forward style and attractive now. Grip on the finish. 88+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Dense, but not as saturated as some; mid weight nose; ripe, some cassis, quite supple; polished and glossy; some blackcurrant; good palate, open and drinkable but with some concentration. Good grip. Some leaf on the palate. Elegant mid weight and attractive. 88-90/100 Tasted 5 April 2011 at UGC. [Second tasting] Deep and saturated colour; lots of coffee, liquorice and cassis; ripe and quite supple and modern; blackcurrant cassis on the palate along with some oak; ripe but a faint green streak here too; bit of tannin and austerity on the finish. Slightly vegetal/green streak in this sample. 86-88?/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC
- 2009 Saturated look; dark core; forward and open; leaf and cedar tones with blackcurrant fruit tones; very appealing on the nose; leafy blackcurrant palate spicy and very fruit forward – perfectly ready to drink now. Savour and some chew on the finish but very supple fruit here. Drink now-2022 90 MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and thick looking; meaty substantial nose but attractive nonetheless; layered palate, quite forward style; blackcurrants, undergrowth, coffee and chew and grip. Not a perfumed Margaux, more meaty and substantial but this is good stuff. 91+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Deep inky; intense and focused nose; tight; layered but good; some minerals and stone quality; palate intense; some real layers and concentration; little bitterness; mocha and chocolate; lots of tannin and good acid and fruit. Could be good. Good length here 90+/100 [Second tasting] Deep black; ripe fruit and violets, good, coffee and mocha, very attractive nose; intense with real layers, some minerals and spice; very impressive; palate silky and fine – very nicely done. Layers and extraction but balanced. Violets, cassis and blackcurrants; tannins very round and soft. Not aggressive. Very well done. 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot 93+/100 Tasted 30th March and 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Mid depth; translucent at core; some iron, tea notes and elegance with herbal spicy tones; not that bad in leafy elegant way; mealy note on the palate., some spice and chew. Angular on the finish. Spicy fruit can’t hide a hollow edge here. 85 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Mid red; attractive open nose of earth, violets and oak; some lift here; intense; palate attractive and already quite forward with some tobacco notes. Quite a forward and attractive modern styled wine for relatively early consumption. Good. 88+/100 [60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot] UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid depth, dark at centre, red edge; earthy and meaty note; some tobacco; quite forward and developed; solid meat and tobacco flavours on the palate, quite chewy, lacks finesse, dryish tannin but just enough ripeness to get by. Shortish finish. 85/100 MW Institue Nov ’11
- 2006 Quite deep core, bit loose at the edge; meaty savoury note, quite appealing and forward in style; not long term clearly as it’s almost fully mature; some leaf and blackcurrant and some intensity; palate some leaf, less of the meat and bolder notes here; quite structured with acidity and developing in an OK way but also some dry, austere tannins. 86-87/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
Château Durfort-Vivens, Cru Classé
- 2012 Deep and fresh looking; sappy blackcurrant; little reductive note; good palate with blackcurrant fruit in a spicy style; sufficient flesh here. Elegant and vigorous Bordeaux. Round tannins. Drink 2017-2028. 89+ UGC Oct ’14.
- 2011 Mid depth; fresh and spicy Cabernet tones; quite lifted; spicy blackcurrant notes on the palate; fresh acid. Vibrant and elegant if high toned. Drink 2016-2026 87+ UGC Oct ’13
- 2010 Deepish and fresher looking [more vibrancy]; some Cabernet Franc tones; blackcurrant cassis and Ribena notes; some cherry tones; quite measured palate with blackcurrant and plum tones with attractive tension between the fruit, the acidity and structure. Not pushed. Intelligent wine. Drink 2016-2035. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated looking; herbal,, boiled sweet and red fruit nose; some menthol; a whiff of honey; quite briary fruit on the palate; spices, herbs and blackcurrants; nice purity; this is the best Durfort for a while. Very good effort. 90+/100 Nov ’12 UGCB London. [Earlier] Deep and saturated; super-ripe notes here plus a curious vegetal streak too; quite intense and blackcurrant, but feels a bit vegetal. Extract and intensity but rather herbal green note. Disappointing. 84-87?/100 Tasted 5 April 2011 at UGC. [Second tasting] Deep, bit rasiny and cooked to me; thick and rather stewy; not me; some blackcurrant notes but feels terribly dry and tannic. I just don’t get the wine here this year. 84-87?/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC
- 2009 Very deep core; red fruit lift; strawberry tones; ripe with resin; fruit on the palate; black fruits; quite elegant with nice saturation and flavour with good sap. Tannin nicely ripe. Good length here. More mid-weight and elegant than some but has come together well. Drink 2015-2030. 90+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Dense colour; ripe, jam and cassis; open palate, ripe red fruits, strawberry tones – almost Burgundian; some dryness to the tannin and the palate; a little medicinal note along with the red fruits. More settled and complete now than before despite tannin. 89-91/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Deep colour; up to edge; slightly dumb note initially later blackcurrant; bit brooding, some fragrance to the palate; violets and elegance; has balance and some tannin; chewy and good extract here; good to very good. Attractive Margaux; true to the commune. 90-92+/100 [Second] Slightly fresher and a little more lifted than the Desmirail; cassis and violets here too but less pronounced, palate intense; some extraction here; tannins a little dry but this is very well endowed with voluptuous fruit, more sturdy than the Desmirail, good extraction. 90-92+/100 [74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot 5% Cabernet Franc] Tasted 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Mid depth; open nose, leafy notes spice and undergrowth; feels mature; works to a degree in a spicy, leafy, herbal style; elegant palate, some chew, lots of acid. This may work out. 87 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Deep red black; red at edge; quite clean and positive on the nose; some earth; good palate, dense and tannic but should develop; slightly austere note but feels well-made. Lacks a bit of flesh. 86/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid depth, quite dark at centre; dusty tannic nose; some spice and blackcurrants on the palate but lacks joy; angular and dry and tannin very dry and chewy. Not sure where this is headed? 84?/100 MW Institute Nov ’11 [Earlier] Quite deep; up to edge; some candy; ripe; good palate, blackcurrants; quite supple and nicely layered palate; depth and concentration with tannins on the finish. Pretty good. 86+/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
- 2006 Mid depth; ripeness here and more strawberry notes than the leafy quality of 2008, nevertheless [given the high cab content] there is some leafy Cabernet Franc notes – but nevertheless quite attractive; earth here too [gravelly style]; quite grippy and austere here on the palate; fresh yes but also a bit austere; ‘old fashioned’ I’ve written, and I mean this in the best sense I think… 86-88/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
- 2005 Mid red; loser at the rim than Giscours; legs; attractive rose petal nose at first, violets; fragrant; cassis also here; seductive; plums and ripe cherry; more blackcurrants on the palate; quite medium weight; some tobacco and mocha notes with rose petal; good grip; elegant and intense with wonderful balance. Reminds me a little of Palmer though less hedonistic. True to Margaux. 92+/100 Sept ’09
Château Ferrière, Cru Classé
- 2015 Bright edge; good density; intense and spicy aromatics; herbal and inky; some jam fruit tones behind this; some chew and sap on the palate; typically fresher style here at Ferrière; has the stuffing though. Vigorous Margaux. [65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, 1% Cabernet Franc, 13.5% alc, organic in 2015, 35% new oak]. Drink 2022-2030. 90-92
- 2014 Deep and saturated colour; opaque centre; vibrant edge; fresh black cherry and cabernet purity; stalky cab tones; some depth and perfume; violet lift; elegant; tightness on the palate; more grip and acidity; compact texture and grippy finish. Chew and acid at present but like the aromatics and the freshness. Will come good and fill out to a degree – but typically fresh style here. [61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2020-2028. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 86-88+
- 2013 Deepish; vibrant meniscus; some wet stone; inky and spicy tones; vigorous with plenty of acidity, tannin and chew but there is fruit. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2017-2023. 84-86
- 2012 Mid depth; resin; blackcurrants; easy palate, not at all tight; forward and easy style. Tannins round. Harmonious effort. Goodish. Drink 2015-2022. 87 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated look; glossy; elegant and fresh notes; Cabernet feels ripe; some layers [oak at the back]; perfume; some black fruits; grip and structure; density with lots of material; chewy finish. Better sample than before. Tighter styled Margaux but pent up and should open nicely. 89-91+ UGC Thursday April 11, 2013 [Earlier note] Saturated and deep; some lift; quite fragrant and elegant if tight on the palate [as ever] but there is attractive fragrance and enough fruit. 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc. 87-89 UGC Tuesday April, 9, 2013.
- 2011 Mid depth; stalky notes; apples; blackcurrants on the palate; pretty ‘fresh’ in the sense of bracing acid and sap. Elegant and sappy. Drink 2016-2026. 86+ UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and vibrant at edge; redcurrants, quite ripe, feels quite saturated in aroma, with cassis and a ealy edge too; layered palate, lots of flavour but also acid, fruit and wood tannin. Bit worked but should settle. 86-88 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Mid depth; darkish core; wet rock notes with oak resin; little shut down; blackcurrant tones on aeration; more blackcurrant tones on the palate; some vigour and life with sappy intensity; sappy and vigorous style; inky and interesting. Intense. Good effort. Drink 2016-2028. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deepish; earthy, mealy note; some herbal tones too; stalky blackcurrants; more richness on the palate; some layers and depth. Good effort. 88+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Pretty saturated in colour; very ripe, plush nose, attractive, some menthol, blackcurrant; layered and good; some herbs and spices here on palate; grippy but intense. Tannin here but should round out. Good and nice length. 89-91/100 Tasted 5 April 2011. [Second tasting] Deep and dark, some velvet, some strawberry, fleshy and quite seductive; freshness; ripe attack but also some astringency in this sample; quite dry on the palate. Needs to settle. More tannic and grippy sample. 87-89?/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC.
- 2009 Mid depth; dark centre; inky and dense if slightly stewed; palate quite high toned yet intense with plenty of pent-up extract. Well structured. Less lush and tighter than many. 2015-2030. 89+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Mid red, deep core; pure blackcurrants and very fresh; some violets; some oak resin; lots of blackcurrants on the palate; great purity here and real freshness. Like this. Grip and tension on the finish which adds punctuation. Good effort and has come together nicely since primeur tastings. 2010 was impressive here too. 91-92+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Fresh, good colour, dense; nice cassis, forward, lots of layers here; coffee and chocolate on the palate; fresh but also with a bit of bite and chew. Nicely done 90+/100 [Second] Deep, vibrant edge; some violets and savory notes with a rawness but opulence at the back; palate some fragrance withalso softer, attractive qualities; depth; extract and material. Quite fine. 88-90+/100 [58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted 30th March and 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Mid depth, some density; some resin and ink, some red fruit and chocolate; herbal tones on the palate, very spicy; grippy with pretty dry tannin at the end. Whiff of under-ripeness? 84 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Deep red; some resin and intensity here; blackcurrants and cassis; some mint and menthol; palate quite open and comparatively lush; layers; quite tannic at the end but with good acid and extract. Good, interesting wine. 88+/100 [70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot] UGC Oct ’10
- 2006 Good depth, central core dark, quite intense, some pine, some cassis, blackcurrant, not that bad; opened up in the glass too. Palate quite intense with grip but also layers behind, quite grippy with structure and acid, nevertheless not too dry, rather chewy and quite nicely done. Overall a bit on the grippy side but should come round with a few years – and certainly some food. 87-88/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
Château Giscours, Cru Classé
- 2015 Deep and attractive colour; violet at edge; blackcurrant aromas; some cream; very pure and polished; very pretty and pure blackcurrant fruit; lovely entry on the palate; pure blackcurrant and blackberry notes; some smoke; nice texture and precision. Elegance and Rolls-Royce refinement to the tannins. Lovely Giscours. A real beauty. The best primeurs sample I’ve yet had from this estate. [70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, 13.7% alc]. Drink 2022-2035. 94-96+
- 2014 Deep core; vibrant and healthy edge; silky blackcurrant aromatics; some earth and pain grillé notes; blackcurrants the main theme but nicely pure and well integrated – a sexy sample; cool blackcurrants on the palate; really fresh and cool; nicely textured with middle but also freshness and acidity. Purity and tight at present. All definitely as it should be. Genuine length on the finish. Impressive stuff. [70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot 13.4% alc, harvested between 22/9 for Merlot and to 16/10 for Cabernet]. Drink 2020-2032. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 91-93+
- 2013 Mid depth; vibrant edge; blackcurrant purity; nicely defined and fruit driven aromatics – true Bordeaux and Margaux attributes; good attack on the palate; vibrant with acidity and life but there is plenty of blackcurrant fruit; some elegance with nice chew at the end. Good effort and worth considering in 2013. [75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot]. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2018-2028. 87-89+
- 2012 Mid depth; lightish at core; little reduction; blackcurrants beneath; sweet, ripe blackcurrants on the palate on entry; attractive fruit; finishes a fraction short but possibly sample a fraction closed. Drink 2017-2026. 88 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep core; vibrant edge; healthy; elegant and fresh aromas; ripe; blackcurrant, some plum; more-ish; violet perfume; fresh palate; lush entry with cool blackcurrant fruit; does very well. Nice balance. Elegance but with layers and flesh. 90-92. Tasted UGC Thursday April 11, 2013. [Earlier note] Mid depth; some purple at edge; stalky Cabernet on the nose with freshness and purity; no hard edges suggested; Cabernet again on the palate with a ripeness and good grip; elegant. Nice Margaux. Good length. Not a blockbuster but has real finesse and you’d expect it to fill out further. 69% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc. 90-91+ Tasted UGC Tuesday April 9, 2013
- 2011 Deepish colour; slightly nutty note initially’ certainly intense and inky; again inky palate with depth and chew. Vibrant and harmonious. Not over extracted. Fresh. Drink 2016-2026 88 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; more floral and perfumed with blackcurrant cassis; more delicacy and vibrancy than many; freshness – not to say there aren’t red fruits and some jam; palate has a satiny note with nice acid. Fresh will work well. Nice balance. 90-91+ UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Mid depth; attractive nose; perfumed and layered; blackcurrants, some earth; elegant and very attractive to me; pure fruit on the palate; precise and fresh; crisp acidity and nicely articulated on the palate. Vivid. Freshly styled pure blackcurrant tones dominate. Very well judged. Drink 2015-2035. 94+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Mid depth; nice oak, blackcurrants and earthy undergrowth notes; some toast and espresso; fresh blackcurrants on the palate; layered and quite cool; toast and chocolate. Dips a fraction but nice freshness and sufficient fruit. 89+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Very deep and saturated; fresh and creamy, blackcurrants and some violets but feels plush and sumptuous; lovely; great palate, intense, black fruits; sumptuous and layered. Great depth and concentration. Tastes wonderful and flattering. 92-94/100 [50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot, alc 13.9%] Tasted 5 April 2011. [Second tasting] Dense and deep; some minerals, some ripe fruit, oak and blackcurrants; some chew; palate on this sample marked by oak; feels a little disjointed at present; oaky. Earlier sample better 88-90?/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC.
- 2009 Mid depth, dark core; stones, minerals and blackcurrants; fraction dumb; spicy blackcurrant fruit on the palate with menthol and herbal notes; tighter than many with structure but plenty of material here. Tannin [ripe] but noticeable on the finish Longer-term. 2019-2035 92+ MW Institute, Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Mid depth; legs; fresh blackcurrant tones; some lift; some undergrowth/stalky notes; little subdued; some perfume too; nice delicacy on the palate here again though currently feeling a little awkward and a fraction angular; less flamboyant than I’d imagined. Tannin nicely handled. Should recover. 89-91/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Deep and dark, purple at edge; little reductive notes, stalky Cabernet; some rose; palate quite rich with structure and acid; maybe lacks flesh at this stage; will settle but high toned in style. Not at all like 2005. 88-90?/100 [Second] Deep, arterial colour; ripe, sturdy blackcurrant note; almost feels traditional; fresh with blackcurrant and cassis beneath; layered and interesting; fresh clean palate nicely done; bit of extract and tannin on the finish but plenty of fruit served alongside – will meld in I’m sure. Very good length. Second sample much more settled. 90-92+/100 1st 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Mid depth; some reddening at edge; chalky, spice and leaf; feels cool vintage; high toned and boney style; pine, spices and herbal tones on the palate. Elegant with plenty of grip. 86 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Mid red; deep; quite big and sturdy nose with some chocolate; some leafy blackcurrant notes; leafy notes continue on the palate – a Cabernet dominated wine I’d imagine. Quite grippy and a little angular. 86/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid depth, darkish central core; leafy, spicy herbaceous nose; some lifted blackcurrant notes too; feels a little green; leafy, tobacco and blackcurrant, some and light palate, feels a bit dilute with a streak of green; harmonious and drinkable effort though in its way and not over extracted. 87/100 MW Institute Nov ’11 [Earlier] Mid-red; leafy blackcurrants; quite elegant; creamy note on the nose; palate intense and good initially but quite dry tannins and quite present on the finish. Some greenness here? May settle down. 86?/100 UGC Oct ’09
- 2006 Some development at the edge, otherwise dark at core, some earthy, leafy, strawberry and blackcurrants, little ‘high toned’ [leafy notes here], some chocolate too, but overall a fresh and lifted quality, palate quite leafy – minty almost – not quite the 2005, some tannins here too and a little dry with bite at the end. Hmmm, probably will develop OK as it has good length but also austerity here. Should be OK in the long run 86-88+/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
- 2005 Dark black, red at edge, thick legs; big ripe fruit, figs, molasses very concentrated and intense nose; almost super ripeness here; some marzipan, cassis and strong blackcurrants. Creamy. Palate big and intense with bags of fruit – stone fruits; real extraction + intensity here; chewy; extracted but fruit of such great quality and wonderfully glossy ripe tannins that it works. 50% new oak has been completely soaked up by the wine. This Giscours is a whopper but hardly Margaux like. Blind I thought it a big St Estephe. Not quite my cup of tea but will develop well as it remains balanced despite its sublimated almost overly concentrated flavours. 90-92+/100 Sept ‘09
- 1975 Mahogany red, dark at the core; roasted, rich and savory meats on the nose; beef, blood strong iron flavours impressive on the palate; now fully mature, chewy, thick and concentrated – tannins dry at the end and maybe starting to fade a little but still plenty of extract and strength. Excellent and one of the major successes of the vintage today. 92/100 May 04
- 1970 Spicy ripe coconut; very warm nose, attractive; velvety with almost mature Syrah notes on the nose; big, earthy; well structured. Very good. Giscours was on top form in the 70s and this wine is a terrific example. Now tasted well over a decade ago but I imagine that well stored examples will still be alive and extremely well. 90+/100 Apr ‘96
Château d’Issan, Cru Classé
- 2013 Deeper; purple at edge; good and healthy blackcurrant tones; purity; creamy quality and nicely integrated oak; quite tight on the palate; elegant with acidity showing. Elegant if a little compact overall. Good effort in the context.[74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 12.83% alc, TA 3.26, pH 3.69 IPT 60, 50% new oak, 55% of production]. Tasted d’Issan April 2014. Drink 2018-2030. 86-88
- 2010 Deepish colour; slightly feral note that blew off revealing blackcurrant aromatics; elegant palate, little modest compared to Giscours before; closed currently. Drink 2015-2025 88? [Second sample]: Earthy blackcurrant aromatics, little dusty; blackcurrants dominate the palate; nicely pure, elegant with spicy finish. Tannins a little dusty and chewy. Needs time and rather shut down. 2018-2030. 90 MW Institute Nov ’14
- 2009 Deep at centre; earthy blackcurrants, spices, coffee beans, almost old-fashioned in the nicest sense [I like this]; plenty of layers of blackcurrant fruit with attractive earthy notes. Very full on the palate but had good left and acid. Grip on the finish. Interestingly balanced for a 2009 with lots of freshness. I wonder if this will turn out to be as exceptional as their 2005. Drink 2016-2030. 93+ MW Institute, Nov ’13.
- 2008 Mid depth, some reddening; very earthy initially, some blackcurrant, some green pepper, capsicum notes; blackcurrant and leaf on the palate; quite old fashioned in feel but not without depth of fruit. Structured and sturdy but enough fruit such that it should meld and last. 87 MW Institute Nov ’12
- 2007 Mid depth, earthy, reductive nose; feral and a bit farty, could do with decanting; meaty flavours on the palate, ripe and more polish than the nose suggests; quite harmonious. 87/100 MW Institute Nov ’11
- 2006 Nice deeply coloured wine, tight to the rim; attractive deep blackcurrant nose with some truffle, earth and tobacco – very nice in an earthy way – refreshing given the style of the last half-dozen wines; palate similarly earthy with truffles and undergrowth alongside the blackcurrants. Good grip and extract here. Pretty fine and pretty classic Margaux. 90-92/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
- 2005 Dark black red; concentrated nose; oak; later mocha elements; lots of concentration on the palate; but still Margaux like. Layered but tight and intense at present. Clearly excellent. 92+/100 Dec ‘09
- 1978 Red/brown; slightly metallic edge which blew off to leave dusty, earthy nose; medium weight, slight faded flavours on the palate. Like ’83, ’78 has not developed well. The ‘miracle’ vintage was short lived. 75/100 Tasted Aug 03
Château Kirwan, Cru Classé
- 2015 Mid depth; stalky blackcurrant aromatics; some cherry; palate harmonious and balanced; has a roundness not found in recent vintages; mid palate has texture; a more caressing effort at Kirwan than other recent vintages. A nice change of direction here – past vintages have been distinctly ‘stern.’ [50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot, 13.9% alc]. Drink 2020-2030. 89-91+
- 2014 Deep, saturated colour; tight to the rim; purple; some oak lift but emphasis on the fruit; ripe too; menthol, spices and some cassis tones; blackcurrant fruit; good emphasis on the fruit also on the palate; bright blackcurrant flavours; grip and structure but flesh [good to see some flesh on offer at Kirwan]; crisp finish; nice length; this should fill out and feels far more positive than any Kirwan since 2010. Still serious but there has been attention paid to mid-palate here. [58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc, 13% alc]. Drink 2022-2030. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 89-91+
- 2013 Mid depth; lightish at centre; little stalky blackcurrant notes; bit reductive; blackcurrant fruit; very sappy style with quite pronounced acidity than Giscours or du Tertre; feels a bit stretched at the end with a dry finish. Hope it fills out. [61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc, 10% Petit Verdot]. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2017-2023. 84-86
- 2012 Mid depth; some resin and blackcurrant with chocolate notes; quite serious in feel; there is fruit here but palate feels a little stretched towards the end. May improve in bottle. There’s a lot of investment going on at Kirwan but the wines are still tending towards an overly serious style. May fill out. Drink 2018-2025. 86. UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; tight to edge; lush and layered; lots of fruit here; some minerality; quite dense, serious with lots of material; layers again on the palate; lots of material; some oak influence and chew but plenty of fruit. Much better showing than earlier. 90-92 Tasted UGC Thursday, April 11, 2013. [Earlier note] Deep and extracted look; some vibrancy at the edge; slightly higher toned than some [though a cool sample bottle]; some cassis, blackcurrants and layers; quite tight; lots of fruit, quite layered and nice extraction; ripe and fine tannin. Grip on the finish. 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot. 13.3 degrees, 45% new oak. 88-90
- 2011 Mid depth; spicy dusty nose, little dumb; angular stalky Cabernet on the palate; lots of acid here and tannin. Very puckering finish. Chewy at best. Disappointing effort to be honest. Drink 2016-2026. 84? UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deepish; more freshness here than expected; nice Cab; layers to the nose; red fruits here too; quite stalky and earthy note too [undergrowth]. Chewy and a little dry on the finish. 87-89 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Deep and dark looking; blackcurrants, wet rocks; mineral notes; resin; methol and spices too; blackcurrant purity on the palate; firm and clean; deep and structured. Lots of stuff here. Good lively finish with crisp acidity. Good effort from Kirwan, still in a serious style, but plenty of depth to this effort. Drink 2018-2030. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier] Deep and saturated; layers of flavour; cassis and black fruits; some plum; opens up on the palate; clean blackcurrant fruit with chew and density and grippy acid; lots here. Perfume too. Looks like a slight change of gear here to a fresher, less extractive worked style. Good news. Little dry finish but it will fill out further. 90/100 [Earlier] Very deep and saturated; strong, whiff of animal; cassis and blackcurrants; plushness and concentration; great entry, layers and concentration and material; grip and structure too; fruit coes back to soak the tannin [of which there is plenty]. Strong wine, tannic and big. 91-93/100 [50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot 13.9 alc] Tasted 5 April 2011 at UGC [Second tasting] Deep and dense; quite plush and plump on the palate; full, some velvet; ripe concentrated wine but with some violet notes; quite thick on the palate and dense but with freshness. Chewy and tannic at the end but extract and fruit seem to dominate the oak. Consistent notes. 91-93+/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC.
- 2009 Very deep and saturated; inky blackcurrants and some spice; little meat when it opens up; layers; lots of depth and structure, structure more evident than the fruit which is a little closed at present. Serious if maybe a little too so for its own good. Drink 2019-2030. 90 MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Dense red; depth; fruit and density; ripe and deep; red fruits here; some jam; thick; palate good, nicely done; blackcurrants and violet tones but with structure, density and chew. Tannic and extracted but works. 91-93+/100 [Earlier] Deep; vibrant at edge; little closed; stone fruits but layers of extract beneath; palate intense, little hard at present; tannic too; good grip and acid; bit awkward at this stage. Will settle. Little mocha on the finish. 90+/100 [Second ] Vibrant and deep in colour; stone fruits and violets on nose; palate quite sweet and attractive; tannic but deep. Freshness but also some sour cherry, savoury edge; palate sweet and ripe; pretty big; quite extracted but sweetness here from the fruit. Coffee and mocha. Some alcohol and tannin on finish. Big wine style. 92+/100 [13.9 degrees, 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, 13.5% Cabernet Franc 6% Petit Verdot] Tasted 30th March and 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Deep and saturated; some earthy, peaty notes with some meal/cereal tones; chewy, dense palate which feels a little overworked and tired. Lacks vibrancy. Chewy, woody and extracted. What will emerge? 86? MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Mid red; some purple; pretty nose; some coconut, blackcurrants and toast; bit of resin too; lots of fruit here and richness but also tannin; fruit and oak tannin and the palate ends up feeling quite dry and a bit over-extracted. 86/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Deep and dark; ripe, mineral, wet rocks, slightly Northern Rhone-ish; blackcurrants; some ripeness here; blackcurrants on the palate, quite angular, green tannin but reasonable effort. 86/100 MW Institute Nov ’11 [Earlier] Mid-red; attractive, perfumed nose; violets and perfume; attractive palate – well done in terms of mid-weight and layers of fruit without the over-extraction. Coffee and mocha notes. Pretty good. 89-90/100 UGC Oct ’09
- 2006 Mid depth; quite hefty nose, some strawberry and coconut, but frankly feels a bit tired; some chocolate; lacks flesh and feels a bit overdone and over extracted; tannic and dry; in fact very dry and extracted on the palate with an extremely dry finish. Not a patch on the glorious wine made here the year before in 2005. 86?/100 MW Institute Nov ‘1o
- 2005 Deep black red; very classy nose; some tobacco and spice, really intense; layers this is very good; creamy and glossy with resin from the oak; some coconut; big and bold on the palate; chewy wine with lots of black fruit intensity and tannin [fruit and wood] plenty of fruit to support the extractive winemaking- big and intense; quite tannic but very good. Potentially excellent and quite enjoyable now for the sadomasochists. 90-92+/100 Sept ‘09
- 2015 Deep and saturated colour; purple edge; lovely fragrance; violet perfume with pain grillé tones; seductive creamy palate; quite bold and expressive with plenty of extract and depth. Little extraction on the finish but this should become more harmonious through elévage. Real potential here at Labégorce. Best wine since their impressive wine here in 2010. [50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc, 45% new oak 14% alc]. Drink 2020-2030. 90-92
- 2014 Deep and attractive colour; oak; black fruits and lift; some perfume; creamy fruit beneath; quite sexy pain grillé tones too; pure blackcurrants and black cherry fruit on the palate; texture and depth; some chew and tannin on the finish but the tannin feels ripe enough. [58% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Petit Verdot]. Drink 2019-2028. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 87-89
- 2013 Deepish colour; some stuffying and density here; earthy blackcurrants with spice; palate not that bad; not too puckering or astringent; more generosity than some. Little chew on the finish. [50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot]. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88
- 2012 Mid depth; healthy looking; very attractive aromatics; earth; blackcurrants and spicy plum perfume; complex; ripe attractive blackcurrant characters on the palate; nicely balanced with good length. The reunited Labegorce goes from strength to strength. Another excellent effort at this estate. Drink 2015-2025. 90 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and dense; lifted nose; some perfume; oak; layered and attractive; lots of fruit here; some violet lift too; nice palate; good balance; lush quality; little drying from the oak [40% new]. Chewy finish. 87-89 Tasted UGC Thursday April 11, 2013. [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; smoky, lush and very forward; some violet notes; cassis, plums; nice palate with lots of lush fruit but nicely done; elegance to a degree; plenty of extract and material but ripe and supple. Very good effort and length too. 53% Merlot, 36% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. 88-90 Tasted UGC Tuesday April 9, 2013.
- 2011 Mid depth; some depth; nicely clean and fruit driven on the nose; no tinkering, even some violet perfume along with blackcurrant fruit; clean entry to the palate; ‘fresh’ again – structure here and pretty boney and dry on the finish. Still achieves some harmony compared to much grander estates in the Margaux appellation. Drink 2016-2023. 86 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Saturated look, some cream, some cassis, also some jam and redcurrant; some thickness too and quite a lot of oak which makes it lack precision; quite thick and bold too on the palate; rich with lots of material and rather worked and some dryness too. Should let the fruit speak more though should settle. 86-88 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Deep and saturated; some leaf, more chocolate; some blackcurrant layers; a certain thickness; quite melded on the palate; blackcurrant fruit; freshness and layers; plenty of extract and has purity. Feels like Margaux. Grip and structure beneath the fruit. Nicely done. Should improve further. 89+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and saturated look; attractive nose, some resin some cassis and vioilet lift; quite layered and good and deep; quite plush palate, rich wine; lots of extract and mid-palate density. Sumptous and good depth and length. Should be a great value 89-91+/100 [45% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot and 5% Cabernet Franc, alc 13.5%] Tasted 5 April 2011. [Second tasting] Deep and dark; nice freshness here this year; blackcurrant, cassis; nice seam of ripe fruit; some cream too; palate has depth, sweetness and is not over-extracted – nicely done. Quite focused and precise. Consistent notes. This could be a great buy 89-91+/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC.
- 2009 Deep and dense; ripe, some nuts; muscular feel; little undergrowth streak but lots of depth and coffee and mocha tones too; this has improved substantially from my primeur recollections; strong and muscular. 89+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Ripe fruit, quite settled nose; some lifted oak notes; palate a bit closed, some fruit here – rose etc – but feels raw at this stage. Tannin. Feels awkward. Tannic at this stage and disjointed. 84-86?/100 [Second] Very ripe note on nose; raisin quality to the fruit though; bit over ripe; palate tannic and over extracted. 82-84?/100 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Deepish; some earthy ripeness; good density on the palate; quite firm and tannins quite obvious; some chew but feels a little tannic and angular. Will probably settle down. 86/100 UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid depth; attractive silky nose with some perfume; palate has satiny quality. Not at all bad and playing to the strengths of the vintage – elegance and finesse. 87/100 UGC Oct ’09
- 2006 Some depth at core but lighter than past few; some lift and chocolate on the nose; quite stoney and mineral note; firmness here on the palate and lacks a bit of life; lacks intensity – all acid and tannins at the moment and lacks richness. 84-85?/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
- 2000 Deep red/black ; glossy, lots of deep blackcurrant and plum fruit on the nose; palate similarly mid-weight with good fruit and twist of acid and ripe tannin on the finish. Will age well. Needs five more years. Good 88/100 Apr ’05
- 1983 – Class vintage in Margaux – actually better than ‘82 here – deep red and dark; intense nose of blackcurrants, weeds and herbs with tobacco and some complexity; palate powerful and strong with some blackcurrant cassis and tobacco mingled with mature notes. Excellent 90/100 Aug ‘04
- 1967 – tea coloured, completely clear; rather dumb tannic nose but palate surprisingly sweet with some tobacco flavours and weedy fruit and spice; very light and gentle but still alive on the palate. A shadow of a wine, but at least not dry tannic old bones. 80/100 Aug 04
Chateau Lascombes, Cru Classé
- 2015 Deep, saturated look; typically opaque at centre; saturated aromatics; some marzipan; creamy palate; harmonious and supple tannins; brighter fruit tones on the palate than the aromatics first suggest; lots of extract and matter but tannin supple and well handled. Still the feeling of being rather ‘worked’ in the cellar, but the harmony is there. [50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 47% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, 42hl/ha, 75% new oak]. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93
- 2014 Deep and saturated colour; concentrated look; full and fat on the nose; the definition of plump and generous; the wine is full and moves slowly around the glass; pure fruit on the palate; some cream; black fruits; perfume; and very round on the palate but some acidity too; extract and matter but very enjoyable; some warmth at the end – is this really 13.5%? Still a typically full and attractive Lascombes. [50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, 13.5% alc, 90% new oak, 60% selection for the grand vin]. Drink 2019-2030. Tasted 31 March, 2015 at UGC. 91-93+
- 2013 Deepish looking; spicy nose; some plums and toast; blackfruits too; similar tones on the palate but a little dry in the middle but overall more stuffing here than Kirwan or Cantenac Brown. Bit extracted overall but let’s see how it settles as Lascombes usually does. Represents 60% of the production. [50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, 13% alc]. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2018-2025. 86-88
- 2012 Deep and saturated looking; colour tight to the rim; full, attractive and perfumed aromatics with some development; full and creamy palate that defines plush, not at all overdone but deliciously full in fruit and flavour; freshness too and structure beneath but this wine makes the most of the vintage’s forward and charming virtues. A crowd pleasing effort. Drink 2015-2028. 93 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; very worked and lifted nose; sublimated style with coffee and mocha notes [oak]; yet [somehow] purity of fruit beneath; violets; palate very lush, plenty of fruit; loads of it in fact; nice texture if in a sublimated, worked style. Lacks a bit of acid? Chewy finish. If they stepped back from the oak and let the fruit express itself this would be so much better for me. 90-91. Tasted UGC Thursday April 11, 2013. [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; lots of density but very lush indeed; deep; coffee bean notes from toasty oak; very lush palate, saturated palate but tannins are very fine and it doesn’t come across as over-extracted. Violets too. Chewy finish but good length. 80% new oak, 48% Merlot, 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot 13.3 degrees alc 90-92+ Tasted UGC Tuesday April 9, 2013.
- 2011 Pretty dense and saturated lookinh; attractive nose, spices, ripe Merlot tones [55% Merlot, 40% Cab Sauv and 5% Petit Verdot]. Plump, ripe and almost fat [by comparison]. Fascinating effort. Lots of matter and extract. Chewy finish. Good fruit here though and should settle nicely. Drink 2016-2026. 89+ UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Saturated colour; malty note; works better; intense, saturated but less jammy, still thick; lots of satiny red fruits on the palate – very big and saturated style; some oak and a little honey; thick and rich overall and lots of extract and material. Chewy on the finish. See how this goes. 88-90 UGCB April 2012
- 2010 Deep centre; very open and forward; plummy spicy notes; very plush as usual [Merlot 55% dominates the blend]; spicy, briary plummy tones on the palate; not as evidently structured as some [structure partially covered by the lashings of fruit] but plenty of material in a softer style. Drink 2015-2030. 93+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep; red at edge; saturated feel; some violet perfume, earth, spices; integrated; full palate; deep; some grip and texture but sufficient fruit and ripeness here. Works very well and has that increasingly elusive – it seems – Margaux perfume. 92+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and dark looking; very ripe nose; strawberry tones; very lush and ripe layers and real ripeness; verging almost towards the overblown; concentration on the palate but lots of tannin and feels very extracted. Dry and extracted palate. Overdone? If settles 88-90?/100 Tasted 5 April 2011 at UGC. [Second tasting] Very dense and saturated look; very sweet and strawberry tones; thick nose, on the unctuous side, verging toward jammy; ripe and thick concentrated palate with density but also tannin here. Blackcurrants and cassis but palate on the drying side and tannins seem overdone? 88-90?/100 but only if settles. Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC.
- 2009 Deep and saturated looking; full, lush nose; toasty oak with plumy, black fruit characters but nice purity with violet lift; very full on the palate with loads of ripe fruit – lashings of it; very full and fruity; toast and espresso on the finish. Not extracted overall, just lush – testimony to the fruit. Almost Burgundian. An impressive effort. Drink 2015-2030. 95+ MW Institute, Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and dense; cherry, violet scented wine with meaty flavours beneath; a big wine; chewy on palate, with violets and density but life and lift too; this is impressive stuff; not delicate but enough juice under the bonnet to support this big style. Big and sexy styled Margaux that works. 93-95+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Arterial in colour; very focused and intense colour; very up front on the nose; layered and concentrated; ripe and full with smoky oak edge; palate very intense and extracted with lots of oak and tannin, but perfume and depth here too. Good extract here; quite extracted style. Could be very good but unlike traditional Margaux? 92-94+ [Second] Big and bold, some lift on the nose from the oak; extracted and bold palate; sweet and ripe and upfront with lots and lots of fruit. Great big extracted red style. Showy. Big dense colour. Lots of coffee and toast from the new oak here; lots of extracted fruit; very deep and layers; again lots of sweet ripe fruit but lots of tannin. Others will give it even more magical scores I’m sure. 92-93+/100 Tasted 30th March & 1st April 2010.
- 2008 Mid depth; some reddening at edge; earthy maturing nose; quite solid; blackcurrant notes, some cassis; pretty good; lots of depth to the palate; nice chew and density; a worked style but the material warrants it. Purity of fruit comes across despite the cellar antics. Much better than 2006 and 2007 here. Stood out nicely in the line-up. 90+ MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Deep red/black; quite muscular, meaty nose; some stalky blackcurrants beneath; mocha etc but feels a little overworked; some violets on the palate; some freshness of Cab [stalky notes] but also a bit angular and pretty tannic too. 86-88/100 [50% Merlot, 47% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Petit Verdot] UGC Oct ’10
- 2007 Mid depth; lifted violets and floral tones, feels very Margaux like, quite seductive; some leaf and slightly green coffee bean streak; palate polished, easy and attractive with harmony. This feels a successful effort. 88+/100 MW Institute Nov ’11 [Earlier] Mid red; big sexy nose here; lots of extract and oak; quite seductive; big palate – violets and damsons here. Good. Quite big but still a feminine quality to the wine. Silky. Extracted yes but it does in this case all add up. Very good in the context of the vintage. 90-92+/100 UGCB Oct ’09
- 2006 Deep at centre; legs; some reddening at the edge; full nose, meaty and savoury quality quite strong and feels more like St Julien, attractive and big; strawberry fruit on the palate with some oaky coconut notes; lacks a bit of middle and a little drying on the finish; feels like the fruit has been pushed a bit far. Overall lacks flesh in the middle, some perfume and fruit here but a drying wine with tannin on the finish. May come round eventually. 86?/100 MW Institute Nov ’10