A dozen red wines from the Graves appellation in 2014 showed fresh, vibrant flavours. The picks for me were Château de Chantegrive, Château Ferrande and Château Rahoul. Solid wines have also been made at Château de Cerons, Grand Enclos du Château Cérons, Château Crabitey and Château Haura. These wines are not overly concentrated, but display vigour and some style, and are usually well priced.
The following wines were tasted at the UGC event at Château Smith Haut Lafitte on Wednesday 1 April, 2015 and at the Grand Cercle event at Château Bellefont-Belcier on 29 March, 2015.
Château Brondelle, Graves, 2014
Mid depth; dark core; nutty lift; resin; sweetness; rather overworked and tired fruit flavours; some wood extract; chewy fruit; not that great for me at this stage. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 82-84.
Château de Cérons, Graves, 2014
Lighter at edge; rather simple Merlot fruit; chalky and wet rock note; some blackcurrant tones later; grip and structure; modest; has fruit but simple. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 84-86
Château de Chantegrive, Graves, 2014
Deep and saturated look; ripe, sweet fruit and black chocolate; black fruits; soft and easy – almost lush – this is attractive, fruit forward Graves. [60% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted 1 April, 2015. 86-88
Château Crabitey, Graves, 2014
Mid depth; dark core; earthy black fruits; blackcurrant beneath; some violet lift; chunky palate; lacks finesse; has grip and some texture; solid. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 83-85
Château Ferrande, Graves, 2014
Deep and saturated look; fresh stalky Bordeaux aromatics; black cherry; soft, easy and open on the palate; sweet and juicy with ripe fruit; some chew on the finish but will settle. Forward, fruit driven style. [54% Merlot, 46% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2018-2025. Tasted 1 April, 2015. 86-88
Clos Floridene, Graves, 2014
Mid depth; glossy look; gusty; tannic aromas; feels like it will be chewy and solid; solid and substantial; fruit; bit one dimensional; chewy and little pinched on the finish. Should settle into something gutsy. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 83-85
Grand Enclos du Château Cérons, Graves, 2014
Deep and very bold in colour; spice; menthol; full and substantial; good; spicy and herbal fruit; menthol; has weight and substance; solid; chew to the tannins. Gutsy style. Should work well. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 85-87
Château Haura, Graves, 2014
Mid depth; nutty note; more cassis; blackcurrant cassis on the palate; lot cleaner than I’d expected; nice fruit and some violet notes; should meld into medium weight good wine. Drink 2017-2025. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 85-87
Château Haut Selve, Graves, 2014
Bit looser at rim; earthy weedy tones; some blackcurrant; not unattractive; red fruits; some resin; lightish; spices; lacks concentration on the palate; light wine and short on the finish. May fill out. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 82-84.
Château Rahoul, Graves, 2014
Mid depth; fresh blackcurrant, plum and black cherry notes; composed; stalky fresh palate; clean with grip and chew; fresh and grippy style. Will settle. Vigourous. [78% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2019-2025. Tasted 1 April, 2015. 86-88
Château Roquetaillade La Grange, Graves, 2014
Deep and saturated look; iodine; inky; smoke; some tar; fruit some smoke; little lapsang note; earth; some grip; modest overall but with some interesting weedy, undergrowth notes. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 82-84
Château Saint Robert, Graves, 2014
Deep and saturated; fruit driven; bubble gum; Cru Beaujolais style: cassis and fruit but with some wood underneath [wood tannin – that dry aspect to the palate]; some chewy fruit and tannin. OK. Sample perhaps a bit tired? Drink 2017-2022. Tasted Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 83-85?
Tags: 2014, Bordeaux 2014, Château Brondelle, Château Crabitey, Château de Cérons, Chateau de Chantegrive, Chateau Ferrande, Château Haura, Château Haut Selve, Chateau Rahoul, Château Roquetaillade La Grange, Chateau Saint Robert, Clos Floridene, Grand Enclos du Château Cérons, Graves