|Classification||3ème Cru Classé|
50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot. Similarly deep and dark (to the Alter Ego). Rather fabulous rich nose again. The texture too is extraordinary, the flavour mostly very ripe plum, very precise but tastes almost like a mature wine - very evolved flavours for a wine only a quarter of its way to a bottle. So however extraordinary the texture, slight doubts about the flavours which seem so advanced, and the texture itself does dry a little toward the finish. Very much look forward to seeing this again further down the line, but certainly impressive. Rating: 94-95 L&S (Apr 2016)
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I am breathless with the dark-berry, lavender and burnt-orange aromas. Some salt. Just so formidable and deep. Stunningly sexy on the palate with a density and power, yet it leaves things so clean and bright. You want to drink it and enjoy it now, but it has the structure to last forever. Drinking range: 2022 - Rating: 100 James Suckling, www.jamessuckling.com(Feb 2018)
Floral, appealing and remarkably loose knit and open at this young age, this is a very appealing rather than a profound Palmer, with succulent red berry fruit, notes of tobacco and cedar wood and good underlying structure. Needs to put on a bit more weight in barrel. Drinking range: 2022 - 2030 Rating: 94 Tim Atkin MW, www.timatkin.com(May 2016)
The 2015 Palmer is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Merlot and 6% Petit Verdot matured into up to 70% new oak. The official start of the picking was 22 September, finishing on the 7 October with the Petit Verdot and the Cabernet Sauvignon. This has a wonderful bouquet with layers of dark cherry, boysenberry, a faint hint of dark chocolate and minerals. There is superb delineation here. The palate is medium-bodied, but this constitutes a decidedly more structured Palmer than I have encountered in recent years, perhaps a little more masculine due to the slightly higher Cabernet content. This is a classic Palmer made by winemaker Thomas Duroux, symmetrical in some way, poised and effortless on the finish. Those who like the more showy Palmer might not warm to this 2015, but this has real class and sophistication, a Palmer that will repay those with the nous to cellar it for 10-15 years. Expect it to reside at the top of my banded score. Drinking range: 2027 - 2060 Rating: 95-97 Neal Martin, www.vinous.com(Apr 2016)
Margaux Troisième cru 1855 What is now Château Palmer was originally part of a larger Château d'Issan but was divided among heirs and came into the ownership of the Gascq family in 1748. The widow of the last of the Gascqs, in 1814, and apparently having met him on a stagecoach, sold the estate to an Englishman, General Charles Palmer, and Château de Gascq became Château Palmer. He extended the estate and built quite a reputation for his wines (especially in London) but financial difficulties forced him to sell up in 1843 and, by the time of the 1855 classification, the reputation of Château Palmer had slipped sufficiently to rate "only" 3rd Growth status - a status it has exceded for most of its subsequent history. The present château was built at the end of the 1850's. In 1938 the Société Civile de Château Palmer was formed to take ownership of the estate, with the Sichel and Mähler-Besse families as leading shareholders, a situation which persists to this day. Château Palmer sits between Margaux and Cantenac, just east of Issan. The 55ha of vines are planted to 47% each of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with the balance being Petit Verdot. The Grand Vin spends 21 months in wood (45% new). The second wine is Alter Ego de Château Palmer. In the best years of General Palmer's reign, the wines of Château Palmer were regarded on a par with those of Château Margaux and, indeed, during the worst years of the 1960's Palmer probably had a better reputation. Today, despite huge improvements by its neighbours, Palmer sits very squarely as the leading Margaux estate that isn't actually Château Margaux.
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