HAUT BRION – 2006

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

 1st Growth in 1855.

RP 96.  The tannins are tight and firm and they dominate. Underneath is ripe fruit, the balance with tannins giving a foursquare, solid character. The wine is complex, spice playing with the fruit, some medicinal flavors and a definite stalky, tight structure. It obviously needs long-term aging.

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HAUT BRION – 2010

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

 1st Growth in 1855.

RP 100.  Complex, expressive, very showy aromas and flavors of cassis, menthol, smoke and tobacco complemented by violet, milk chocolate and sweet spices. Fat, sweet and concentrated in the mouth, with an almost liqueur-like ripeness to its highly concentrated, palate-saturating flavors. Finishes ripe and savory, with huge but plush tannins and lingering notes of blueberry and minerals.

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CHAPELLE DE LA MISSION HAUT BRION – 2009

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

2nd label from Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion.

RP 91.  From a blend of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, the wine is packed with anise, truffle, smoke and black cherry jam aromas. On the palate, the wine is plush, soft, round, sweet, ripe and ends with a cassis and black cherry filled finish.

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CHAPELLE DE LA MISSION HAUT BRION – 2010

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

2nd label from Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion.

RP 93.  Fleshy, succulent and opulent along the lines of the 2009 (which did surprise me ), it is a big wine, with boatloads of glycerin and a classic Graves character of scorched earth, burning embers, charcoal, and plenty of black cherry and black currant fruit. ”RP”

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CHATEAU PONTET CANET – 2003

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95.  Deep purple to the rim with expressive nose of scorched earth, black jammy currant, smoke, licorice and meatiness, it is full-bodied, incredibly powerful, dense, with low acidity but high tannin structure.

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CHATEAU PONTET CANET – 2006

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95.  Blackberry, currant and plum tart aromas lead to a full body, with a solid core of fruit, sweet fruit and silky tannins. Generous and round, with lovely richness for the vintage. ”WS”

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CHATEAU PONTET CANET – 2008

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 96.  Smooth, with dense tannins hidden behind the ripe, pure fruit, this important wine shows class and an impeccable balance of fruit and tannin. Rich as well as structured, this is a beautiful wine.

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CHATEAU PONTET CANET – 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 100.  This is big, broad and powerfully rendered, but remarkably polished and refined at the same time. An enormous core of roasted fig, blackberry and black currant fruit is suavely wrapped with roasted apple wood and sandalwood, while dark espresso, loam and warm paving stone notes drive the finish. Very long, with a great tug of scorched earth at the end. A terrific combination of power and precision. ”WS”

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CHATEAU PONTET CANET – 2011

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95.  The fruit is very pure with a great depth of flavor. This wine has weight, and intense flavors of dark plum and sweet fruit. Impressive.”WE”

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CHATEAU PICHON-LONGUEVILLE-LALANDE – 2009

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

 2nd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95. The packed aromatics are filled with cedar wood, incense, cassis, earth, espresso bean and cigar tobacco. Blend of 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, this supple, rich, round Bordeaux ends with fresh cassis, blackberries and black cherries. Very stylish.

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PICHON LALANDE 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

 2nd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95. Initial impression is sweet oaky spice and chocolate. Same chocolate effect on the palate but has the fruit and freshness to come through beyond the oak. Pure fresh fruit emerges on the fresh aftertaste. ”JR”

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CHATEAU PICHON-LONGUEVILLE-BARON – 2008

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

2nd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95. Bright ruby-red. Black cherry, leather and strong graphite minerality on the nose. Silky, sweet and suave, with dark fruit flavors lifted by a violet element and given grip and definition by a strong mineral spine. Wonderfully deep, ripe Pauillac with strong early sexy appeal. Finishes very bright and long, with serious but sweet tannins.

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CHATEAU PICHON-LONGUEVILLE-BARON – 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

2nd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 97. Solidly built, with a roasted edge to the steeped fig, blackberry and black currant flavors, quickly followed by brambly tannins and notes of bay leaf and espresso. Stays dark and tarry through the finish, with superb drive and verve. ”WS”

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CHATEAU PICHON-LONGUEVILLE-BARON – 1996

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

2nd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 91.  Good full ruby-red. Roasted plum, leather and smoked nuts on the nose. Silky and layered in the mouth. Sweet and suave, with a complicating mineral quality. Suggests solid extract but ultimately a wine of very good rather than outstanding intensity. Finishes with fine tannins and persistent, slow-building flavor.

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CHATEAU PETIT MOUTON – 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

2nd label from Chateau Mouton Rothschild.

RP 91.  Solid, with forward black currant, plum skin and crushed blackberry fruit lined with charcoal, showing a dusting of loam on the finish.

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MOUTON ROTHSCHILD – 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 98.  This is pure Cabernet Sauvignon magic with incredible aromas of currants, blackberries and light spices. Tiny hints of hazelnut. Wet earth. Full body, with super velvety tannins. The purity of fruit is breathtaking. It goes on for minutes. This is 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot.

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MOUTON ROTHSCHILD – 2006

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 98. The aromatics explode from the glass. The complex perfume is filled with primary scents of smoke, caramel, tar, espresso, coffee, chocolate, spicy black cherry and cassis. This dense wine is extremely rich and offers multiple layers of fruit and freshness. The fruit displays an intense purity that is hard to find. Considered a  legendary vintage of Mouton Rothschild.

 

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LYNCH BAGES – 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 96. Roasted cedar, tobacco and bay leaf notes start off this structured but lively bottling, with intense currant, blackberry and black cherry flavors at the core. The iron-laced grip and pleasantly austere plum pit and licorice snap accents fill in on the tar-tinged finish.

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LYNCH BAGES – 2011

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 93. Excellent weight and intensity, brimming with plum, blackberry and cassis that’s offset by loads of spice. Very smooth through the long finish.

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LYNCH BAGES – 2009

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 98. Intense aromas of blackberries, currants and blueberries, follow through to a full body, with wonderful fruit and ultra-fine tannins. Fabulous Lynch. One of the top buys of the vintage.

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LYNCH BAGES – 2006

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 94. Blackberry, licorice and mint aromas lead to a full-bodied palate, with velvety tannins and lots of blackberry and mineral fruit character. Shows outstanding concentration and balance.

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LYNCH BAGES – 2008

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 93. A sensational effort for the vintage, this textured, opulent, superb Lynch Bages is already strutting its stuff and should easily last for 20 years. Medium to full-bodied with an opaque dense purple color, notes of flowers and cassis, a layered texture that builds incrementally in the mouth and tremendous purity and depth, it can be drunk now or cellared for two decades or more. Bravo! ”RP”

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LYNCH BAGES – 2005

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

 Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 95. Bright ruby-red. Expressive, classic aromas of currant, mocha, smoke and camphor. Rich, broad and ripe but impressively young, offering flavors of dark berries, chocolate, spices and smoke enlivened by firm acidity.

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LAFITA ROTHSCHILD – 2008

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 98. WE 100. Almost black in color, this stunning wine is gorgeous, rich and dense. It’s grand and powerful, with a strong sense of its own importance. The beautiful tannins and the fragrant black currant fruits are palpable. It’s a great wine, with huge potential. ”WE”

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LAFITE ROTHSCHILD – 2010

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 98. WE 100. Almost black in color, this stunning wine is gorgeous, rich and dense. It’s grand and powerful, with a strong sense of its own importance. The beautiful tannins and the fragrant black currant fruits are palpable. It’s a great wine, with huge potential

 

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CARRUADES DE LAFITE – 2006

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

 2nd label from Chateau Lafite Rothschild.

RP 90. Raspberry and black licorice on the nose, with a hint of tar. Full-bodied, with well-integrated tannins and a medium finish.

 

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CHATEAU PAVILLON ROUGE – 2010

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

2nd label from Chateau Margaux

RP 94.  A balanced and fruity wine with good blackberry and currant character. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a fresh finish. Grows on the palate. Medium finish.

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CHATEAU PALMER – 2010

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

3rd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 98. A purity of fruit here with plum and dark chocolate undertones. Spices and treacle tart as well. Full body, with ultra-fine tannins and a long, long finish. Very fine indeed. Fit, fruity and reserved. Superb.

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CHATEAU PALMER – 2006

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

3rd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 92.  Coffee, plum and spices on the nose follow through to a full body, with lovely fruit and a soft, silky-textured finish. Very balanced and beautiful, with lots of violet, new wood and richness.

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MARGAUX – 2010

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

 1st Growth in 1855.

RP 99.  A mouthwatering tobacco leaf note leads the way, quickly followed by steeped black currant and fig fruit, with dark tar and ganache on the back end. Roasted alder and juniper hints hang in the background. Extremely backward, with a firm, tannic structure, this is girded for the long haul. Judging from the finely beaded acidity and lilting echo of lilac that peeks in now, this should acquire sensational aromatics and incredible grace with age.

 

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MARGAUX – 2006

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 94. This has a wonderful nose of perfume, sandalwood, ripe plum and berries. Full-bodied, with seamless tannins and a long finish. Gorgeous.

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MARGAUX – 2005

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 98. WS 100. Black in color, delivering extraordinary aromas of blackberry, raisin, spices and fresh mushroom. Full-bodied, with an amazing core of ripe fruit, yet ultrabalanced and finely textured. Touches every taste bud. This incredible young red spent two years in new wood, but you can’t tell. It’s all glorious fruit. A legendary wine.

 

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MARGAUX – 2003

Margaux, Bordeaux, France

1st Growth in 1855.

RP 99.  Truffle, coffee bean, licorice, spice, roasted blackberries and cherry blossoms. Pure , sensuality, with fruit drenched in velvet and silky tannins, with a long, fresh, sweet black cherry finish. This is still young and while the wine is delicious to drink today, this is going to get better and better with time.

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MALARTIC LAGRAVEIERE – Blanc 2010

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

 Grand Cru classe de Graves in 1959.

RP 93.  Pale yellow in color, honeydew, citrus and spicy notes open the wine. Medium bodied with sweet fruits, soft textures and citrus.

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HAUTS DE SMITH – Blanc – 2011

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru classe de Graves in 1959.

RP 93. Blend of 90% Sauvignon Blanc, 5% Semillon and 5% Sauvignon Gris. Packed with vanilla bean, smoke, citrus, apple, stone and spicy tones. Rich, soft, fresh and refreshing, the wine finished with lemon peel in the crisp finish.

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LYNCH BAGES, DE BLANC – 2013

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

 Grand Cru in 1855.

JS 93.  This is super-fresh and mineral with oyster shell and salt. Full body with dried lemons and hints of mango. Long and fresh. Crazy grapefruit. Tangy and energetic.

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LANGOA BARTON – 2010

St. Julien, Bordeaux, France

3rd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 93. Intense crimson. Profound, pure nose of red fruit pulp. Robust, well-structured palate with quite pronounced tannins against a warm backdrop, capped off with a sensation of firmness.

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GRUAUD LAROSE – 2010

St.Julien, Bordeaux, France

2nd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 93.  Tannic, structured, long, concentrated with cassis, black raspberry, stone, tobacco and spice, this blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot and 6% Petit Verdot.

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BRANAIRE-DUCRU – 2010

St.Julien, Bordeaux, France

 Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 94. The deep ruby 2010 Branaire-Ducru has lifted aromas of cedar, plums and blackberries, followed by layers of floral notes and mixed berry fruits that are reserved and focused. This is made in a traditional rather than a ripe, voluptuous, modern style, and the overall impression is of a beautifully restrained classic St Julien of great balance and elegance.

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BRANAIRE-DUCRU – 2011

St.Julien, Bordeaux, France

 Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 93. Elegant style, with a violet hue to the supple red currant, blueberry and black cherry fruit flavors that mingle with intense spice on the finish. Offers fine-grained structure.

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BRANAIRE-DUCRU – 2009

St. Julien, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 96. Good full deep ruby. Intense aromas of black raspberry liqueur, mocha, bitter chocolate and licorice. Super concentrated, chewy and deep, with a three-dimensional texture and a big structure. Offers terrific sweetness but also an almost medicinal reserve that promises a long evolution in bottle.
The black cherry, bitter chocolate, mineral, floral and mint flavors stain the palate and bury the wine’s ripe tannins.

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BEYCHEVELLE – 2010

St. Julien, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855. 

RP 94. Beautiful aromas of blackberries, currants and flowers. Very aromatic. Full body, with ultra-fine tannins and gorgeous fruit. It’s polished and very refined.

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CALON SEGUR – 2000

St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France

3rd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 91 / WS 93.  Berry, spice and leather aromas follow through to a medium- to full-bodied palate, with firm and silky tannins and a long, caressing finish. A harmonious wine.”

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CALON SEGUR – 1996

St.Estephe, Bordeaux, France

 3rd Growth Grand Cru in 1855.

RP 92. A fully realized garnet, this wine possesses the type of complex nose that helped make Bordeaux so coveted: notes of rich spice, black cherry, red currant, and plum are underscored by hints of minerals and leathery tobacco. Ripe, smooth, and sappy, this full-bodied wine offers up refined texture and finesse. Firm and long on the finish, with a sweet start and a glossy finish. Drinking well now through 2030.

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LARCIS DUCASSE – 2010

St.Emilion, Bordeaux, France

Premier Grand Cru.

RP 98. Rich, tongue-coating style, with loamy structure and dense plum sauce, roasted fig and warm dark currant confiture notes, all inlaid with espresso and graphite.

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LARCIS DUCASSE – 2009

St.Emilion, Bordeaux, France

Premier Grand Cru.

RP 96.  81% Merlot and 19% Cabernet Franc that tipped the scales at 14.6% natural alcohol. A complex set of aromas ranging from coffee to forest floor, herbs, licorice, blackberries, cassis and cherries all seem to jump from the glass, and then are joined by a hint of charcoal as well camphor. This is an impressive, full-bodied, dense, concentrated wine.

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CHAPELLE D’AUSONE – 2009

St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France

2nd label for Premier Grand Cru – Chateau Ausone

RP 92. Tobacco, plums, spices. A gorgeous wine with amazing intensity and layers of flavours – ripe plums, hints of cedarwood, spices. The wine tastes fresh and alive with generous, Merlot-based plummy fruit.

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CANON – 2008

St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France

Premier Grand Cru.

The Château Canon 2008 expresses sweet raspberry, blue fruit, petrichor, and strong floral characteristics. These are followed by a fresh, lively, full bodied wine that offers a balance of power and finesse. With good purity, texture, and length, this wine will require patience as the tannins, while sweet and velvety, are noticeable.

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MALARTIC LAGRAVIERE – 2010

Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru classe de Graves in 1959.

RP 94. Impressive nose with leather, dark polished fruit and flowers. Wonderful mouthfeel with soft silky tannins and beautiful texture. Really well put together. Powerful and rich with loads of fruit and ripe tannins. Very ripe.

 

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CLERC MILON – 2009

Pauilac, Bordeaux, France

Grand Cru in 1855. (Clerc-Milon-Rothschild).

RP 92. Fabulous aromas of currant, tar, lead pencil and mineral. Full-bodied, with supersoft tannins that caress the palate. Beautiful and impressive. A fabulous wine.

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