Wine Words & Video Tape

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Bordeaux 2015 – Primeurs Day 2

Written by JW. Posted in Bordeaux

IMG_0871Day two on the primeurs trail covered the top properties in St Julien, St Estèphe and Pauillac. The brief but significant September rain on the eve of harvest here affected estates differently and there is variation in the wines. Amongst the top growths on the finest terroirs beautiful wines have been produced. Perhaps these are not quite at the very top like 2009 or 2010, or perhaps even 2005, [though in certain cases they are close] but nevertheless there is real magic and beauty in the best wines. There is an accessibility too that almost hides their power. Château Mouton-Rothschild in Pauillac stood out as exceptional, along with Château Montrose and Château Cos d’Estournel in St Estèphe. Château Ducru Beaucaillou, Château Léoville-Las-Cases and Château Léoville Poyferré were all very impressive in St Julien. Ducru has made exceptionally attractive wine this year. It is a beauty – a term that is constantly turning up in my tasting notes in 2015.

At Château Meyney a number of the CA Grand Cru wines were shown including an impressive Château Grand-Puy Ducasse as well as Meyney itself [it is no slouch in 2015]. Also in St Estèphe good wine has been produced this year at Château Haut-Marbuzet [and their 2014 missed last year by me during primeurs looks very impressive after a year or so’s elévage]. Château Calon-Ségur has made delicate wine and Château Capbern is pretty and harmonious, but neither are quite the star attractions they were in the appellation last year. Cos, for me, has made one of the best wines of the St Estèphe appellation, alongside another towering effort from Château Montrose.


Talking of big Cabernet’s, the infant 2015 Château Mouton-Rothschild looks to be a wonderful wine and there was real homogeneity to the sibling Château d’Armailhaq and Château Clerc Milon. By contrast the wines from the Lafite stable on the left bank were disappointing on the day. There is finesse and poise to Château Lafite-Rothschild but its elegant offering is a far cry from last year’s exciting 2014. So too Duhart-Milon. I’d wish I could say it was the low ‘air pressure’ on the day at the tasting, but the barometer was even lower when I arrived at Mouton and that didn’t affect things, so we can rule that one out [see gathering storm through portal window at Mouton below].


For me Monday started in St Julien, [Château Léoville-Poyferré] and it ended in St Julien [Château Ducru-Beaucaillou]. I’ll post in more detail on all these wines [and on Tuesday’s subsequent UGC tasting at Château Gruaud Larose for the remaining St Juliens] but there is no denying the voluptuousness of Ducru-Beaucaillou this year.


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