The dismal day here in London yesterday was somewhat mirrored by the dispiriting news from Bordeaux that they are not really getting the message on pricing! There were several releases that we would like to get excited about - some good wines - but they are as ever, only interesting en primeur at the right price.
'an outstanding, classic, drop-dead gorgeous Léoville Barton that is destined to give immense pleasure over the coming years'. Neal Martin, erobertparker.com The big one out this morning is Château Léoville Barton, always a decisive moment in any en primeur campaign.
The visit to Ducru Beaucaillou this year was another great tasting, with all the wines singing and showing lovely real Saint Julien character - a fine well-knit delicacy of expression, while certainly not lacking oomph. These two 'lesser' wines are good examples, Lalande Borie should be a good drink from the moment it is delivered ('Very sweet and perfumed.
Just as we were thinking that the big names would all wait until after Vinexpo Hong Kong to release, along comes Alfred Tesseron with Château Pontet Canet at £795, one of the real big beasts, and a wine with universally high scores across the board - 97 - 98/100 James Suckling, 94 - 96/100 Neal Martin, 17 Jancis Robinson, 94 Tim Atkin etc.
Undecided as to what bottle size you want? Do something different and order a 'multiformat' case. These cases are available for only a few wines, but they are rather fun. You get 4 normal 75cl bottles, 2 magnums and one double-magnum all the the same wooden case.
Out this morning are the single vineyard wines from Jonathan Maltus, Vieux Château Mazerat (£630) and Les Astéries. These Saint Emilions have have rave reviews and are worth a look.
'Yet another ridiculously fine wine to load up on, courtesy of Denis Durantou.' So said Neal Martin of 2015 CHÂTEAU LES CRUZELLES, Denis Durantou's lead wine from his Lalande de Pomerol property. And this is another cracker and great value at £180 a dozen. 91-93 Neal Martin, 92-93 James Suckling.
A sunny start in London is matched by a surge of activity in Bordeaux with releases of some good wines this morning, they're coming thick and fast now. Amongst these are some of the more interesting wines that we tasted during 'primeur week' in Bordeaux. The headline release is probably Château Clerc Milon from the Rothschilds of Mouton.
Today's releases all have firm advocates. We think du Tertre looks the best buy - from the village in the Médoc which many think has produced the vintage's most consistent success. 2015 CHÂTEAU DU TERTRE , as Neal Martin says, giving it 91-93, 'Alexandre Van Beek might have produced his best du Tertre to date'.
‘…the best value you will find across entire Bordeaux’. Neal Martin in The Wine Advocate – erobertparker,com.
On the market this afternoon are the first two wines from the Denis Durantou ‘Église Clinet’ stable.
Yesterday and this morning have seen a few of the more serious crus classés being released - the primeur season is getting into gear. 2015 CHÂTEAU PAPE CLEMENT (£625) is a big wine with a mass of rich dark concentration. For us it seems a little forced, but Neal Martin (95-97) and James Suckling (96-97) clearly loved it.