2011 4ème Cru Classé Saint Julien

Colour Red
Origin France, Bordeaux
Sub-district Haut Médoc
Village Saint Julien
Classification 4ème Cru Classé
ABV 13%

As the general manager Jean-Pierre Marty remarks, Talbot does well in hot years. 37% Merlot, 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3 or 4% Petit Verdot. Nice bright nose. Curranty cassis. It quickly gathers pace on the palate, fine texture with cool flow and juice. M. Marty descibes it as 'a kind of progressive harmony'. Yes. Very attractive and a bit more solid than some of the earlier vintages of the 2000s. (2003 and '09/'10 excepted, of course.) Rating: 92 L&S (Apr 2012)

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Good bright ruby. Sexy oak spices, mint and menthol complicate bright redcurrant and dark plum on the nose. Round but fresh and lively too, with lovely vinosity giving shape and lift to the dark cherry, plum and sweet spice flavors. Offers a fleshy sweetness that's unusual for the year. This lovely wine finishes with good length. Rating: 89 Ian d'Agata - Stephen Tanzer website (Jul 2014)

Although the nose is firm and tight there is a richer sweeter feel on the palate. Bramble and bilberry give some freshness but the cassis and black cherry that show on the finish give it depth and richness. 2020-40 Rating: 88-90 Derek Smedley MW, (Dec 2013)

Not much nose. Light and well mannered. Tannins well managed and rather supple and appealing already. 2016-2026 Rating: 16 Jancis Robinson OBE MW - (May 2012)

Château Talbot

St Julien Quatrième cru 1855 John Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury was sent by King Henry VI to re-impose some English rule on this troublesome part of his Kingdom, but ended up being killed at the Battle of Castillon in 1453. Quite what connection he had with this particular bit of St Julien is unknown but, at least as far back as the 17th Century, the large estate in the centre of the appellation has been known as Château Talbot and it has generally been held that it was named for said John Talbot. Désiré Cordier bought Talbot in 1917 and it is still in the hands of the Cordier family. Sitting right in the middle of St Julien, surrounded by the great names of the appellation, and at 107ha of vineyard, Château Talbot is hard to miss. The vineyards are planted to 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. Fermentation takes place in a combination of traditional wooden vats and modern stainless steel, with the Grand Vin spending 14 months in oak (50%-60% new). There is a second wine named in honour of John Talbot, who's local title was Connétable Talbot. With such big production and with an easy name to read and remember in the English-speaking market, Château Talbot has a healthy following and reliable reputation. It is a reputation that Talbot, by and large, lives up to with well-flavoured structured wines.

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