Bordeaux Wine Tasting, Monday, January 24, Round Two
Continuing the saga of the Union des Grand Crus de Bordeaux 2008 Vintage Tasting (houses that have been starred were my favorite picks):
Chateau Cos Labory, Saint Estephe, 2008
The nose has a wonderful dark fruit aroma with a refreshing hint of cloves and nutmeg. The palate has a soft approach, evolving into berry flavors and easy, soft tannins.
Chateau Carbonnieux, Pessac-Leognan, Graves, Blanc, 2008 ***
Nose of gooseberry and heavy grapefruit. The palate is extremely fresh with concentrated, soft acid and leaves hints of sweetened grapefruit on the clean finish. Excellent crisp, dry Bordeaux Blanc. Love it!
Chateau De Fieuzal, Graves, Blanc, 2008
Melon, lemon balm, and soft grapefruit zest on the nose. Flavors of lemon grass and vanilla with a silky dry finish. Also very nice.
Chateau Latour-Martillac, Pessac-Leognan, Blanc, 2008
Grapefruit -- scratch that -- lots of grapefruit and almost "cat-like;" very crisp scent. There is ripe, sickly-sweet citrus and grapefruit palate.
Chateau Olivier, Pessac-Leognan, Blanc, 2008 ***
Clean nose with pomegranate, peach, and light grapefruit. Light oak with citrus flavor and balance of acidity with the notes of peach. Finishes quickly.
Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac-Leognan, Blanc, 2008
Nose of citrus, lemon grass, pear and sweet grapefruit. The palate is extremely crisp with higher acid, and slight earth and sugar qualities. Hints of pepper in the fruit.
Chateau Angelus, Saint Emilion, 2008 ***
The nose is thick with earth, cocoa, and stone fruit. The palate is big with espresso and an oak flavor. This wine has a roundness that has to come from a larger ratio of Merlot. The wine is really good, but needs a little time in the cellar to tame the tannins. One of my favorites from the tasting.
Chateau Canon, Saint Emilion, 2008
Has a fantastic nose, with the best spice of the day, and hints of cedar, cigar, and deep berry. The palate is more cedar, and tight tannins in the dark fruit. Also needs time to calm down.
Chateau Canon la Gaffeliere, Saint Emilion, 2008
The nose has great cloves, mint, spice, and plum. Has a slightly bitter front, with tight tannins and deep stone fruit, and strong tannins on the back. The Chateau's representative said it would be best after a four-year laydown to balance the tannins... I think a few more years would be necessary for my taste.
Chateau Figeac, Saint Emilion, 2008 ***
The color has a beautiful red-purple hue and the nose is full of grape and plum and has a soft scent. It is softer, has a touch of smoke, and has a good balance of fruit and terroir, with flavors of earth and blackberry. I really enjoyed the Figeac.
Chateau La Gaffeliere, Saint Emilion, 2008
There is a slight mint note, with deep fruit scents on the nose. The palate is approachable, but it could use three to four years in the cellar. It has good, juicy tannins, and is rich in berry and pomegranate. At this age, it's good... there is something missing in the middle, but in a few years, it could be phenomenal.
Chateau Clinet, Pomerol, 2008 ***
An awesome nose of coffee and toffee, sweet fruit, and beautiful spice. The palate is light with ripe strawberry in the middle, and a dry, clean, cedar finish. Great balance. This was one of my picks for drink-ability now.
There will be one more chapter in the next few days with the conclusion of the notes from Monday's Bordeaux tasting. While the above are great picks, there are some amazing houses and notes coming up in the next round.