A great set of Pauillacs have emerged from the Domaine Baron Philippe de Rothschild stable in 2016. This is a perfect vintage for these terroirs. Château d’Armailhac may have produced its most balanced and refined wine yet. It vies with 2009 and 2010 here. This is true also of Château Clerc-Milon which has probably made its best wine since the very impressive 2010. Le Petit Mouton de Mouton Rothschild is just as seductive as the precocious 2012. Great stuff! And what of Château Mouton-Rothschild itself? Technically it has more tannin than 2010 but you wouldn’t notice, such is the silky texture here this year. The wine has the most remarkable depth and balance. It must surely go down as one of the great Moutons.
Posts Tagged ‘Philippe Dhalluin’
Back to Bordeaux, and straight to the top. Château Mouton Rothschild, alongside Latour, led Pauillac this year for me. Mouton 2015 has power and depth but also harmony. It goes down in my book as the most impressive wine here since 2010 [though as at many Médoc properties the 2014 may yet give it a run for its money]. Le Petit Mouton also impressed and both Château d’Armailhac and Château Clerc-Milon look good this year. The bad news is that prices are up substantially on 2014, by 60% in the case of Mouton itself. Further exchange rate instability in the UK at least may also influence the price at which Mouton is offered.
After the last few vintages here the 2014 harvest was clearly something of a relief for Philippe Dhalluin and his team at Château Mouton-Rothschild. After scrambles to pick in 2012 and especially 2013 in the face of impending doom, 2014 proved the polar opposite. After a cool, though relatively dry August here in Pauillac, a decent vintage depended on miraculous conditions, and that is precisely what they got. The sunny, dry weather of September and October meant that after a string of vintages marred by tricky harvest weather, they finally had the time to wait and get perfect ripeness. The results speak for themselves. This is probably the strongest vintage at Mouton since 2010, with the exception of 2012 here which is no slouch. The grand vin itself is powerful, if currently backward. Fine, balanced and characterful wines have been made at Château d’Armailhac and Château Clerc Milon. 2014 is another excellent vintage for the tiny quantities of Aile d’Argent that are made on the Mouton property.
This morning’s release of Mouton-Rothschild at £1400 [$2100] per six has led me to shunt this particular review up the batting order. The price, 33% down on 2011, will be sure to send the cat amongst the pigeons and is something of a relief given concern about Bordeaux pricing. I’ll be following soon in more detail about Chateau Lafite-Rothschild and Chateau Latour, as well as the other Pauillac chateaux, following the continuation of my Right Bank coverage.