St Estèphe is awash with good value Bordeaux. This most northerly appellation in the Haut-Médoc produces firm yet fleshy reds with lots of extract and tannin. Modern methods of vinification combined with the picking of tannin ripe grapes have reduced the coarseness that characterised some of the wines here a decade or so ago. Full-throttle St Estèphe always was but now there’s much more finesse to be found here. A list of affordable, good quality wines from this appellation would certainly include Château Capbern, Château Le Crock, Château Le Boscq, Château Tronquoy-Lalande and Château Beau-Site. In very top vintages these wines are of classed growth quality. There’s another tier above which includes Château Haut-Marbuzet, Château Lafon-Rochet, Château Cos Labory, Château Phélan-Ségur, Château Ormes de Pez, Château de Pez and Château Meyney. At the top of the tree, classed growths Château Calon Ségur, Château Cos d’Estournel and Château Montrose often make wine of equivalent quality [in very different ways] to the neighbouring Pauillac first growths.
Posts Tagged ‘CA Grand Crus’
Château Meyney has to be one of the outstanding wine values in St Estèphe, an appellation that offers a lot of value for money. After terrific wines here in 2009 and 2010, Meyney produced an exceptional 2012. In 2013 it has followed up with another impressive wine. It has good depth and fleshy fruit for the vintage. The harvest here was even later than at neighbouring Château Montrose, finally completing October 19. Like Montrose, the property benefits from a relatively high position on a hilltop plateau sloping down towards the Gironde, a spot that offered a number of advantages in the wet, humid vintage. There’s also a degree of winemaking savvy here, allied to investment, which makes Chateau Meyney now regularly one of the properties to watch in the appellation.
Anyone who has drunk 1961 or 1970 Château Meyney will be very well aware of the extraordinary potential of this property. Situated next to Château Montrose in St Estèphe, the vineyard lies in a single block of approximately fifty hectares and sits in a terrific position overlooking the Gironde. There has been steady and sure improvement here over the past decade since the purchase of the property by Credit Agricole’s CA Grand Crus group. There has been much investment in the vineyard and very good wines were made here in 2009 and 2010. I’m especially impressed by Meyney in 2012 too. It’s a cracking effort, a real success for the vintage, and provides genuine value to the consumer.
A week ahead of Bordeaux’s 2012 primeurs week, just what have proprietors on the Left Bank been saying about the vintage? The consensus seems to be that, despite a very tricky spring and early summer, the vintage was saved by dry and hot conditions in late July and August and some useful rain at the end of September which helped the final ripening of the grapes. Things might actually have turned out very well indeed – a vintage similar to 2000 was being touted by some at the end of September – had it not been for more considerable and progressive rain that came in mid October onwards.