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Our first tasting of the 2011 vintage was at Planete Bordeaux. It is located on the highway to St. Emilion just east of Bordeayx. All of the wines at the tasting were either Bordeaux or Bordeaux Superieur. There were about 120+ wines in total.
Bordeaux and Bordeaux Sup. wines make an set – with wide gulfs in both quality and price. Most Chateaux make simple and fruity wines that match there designation and price the wines accordingly. Other owners are trying to transcend there appellations and make bigger more structured wines that can command higher prices – which they then have no qualms about charging. Personally, I prefer the simple fruity wines from these appellations.
My personal preference for the simple and fruity wines was confirmed in this tough vintage. Wines that were made in that style showed better than the more extracted wines which had ‘debilitating’ tannins that were unripe. These tannins were so bad that your mouth stopped working after tasting about 10-15 wines. After tasting over 100 of these wines – we found it hard to hold a conversation!
This seems to be a tough vintage with unripe tannins that were hard to control. If this tasting is evidence of the quality of the vintage – this is probably a vintage I would recommend staying away from. I will have to confirm this at future tastings during the week. Stay tuned.
Nonetheless, regardless of the vintage issues and the stylistic issues – there were a number of wines that showed well:
- Ch. Parenechere
- Ch. Pierrail
- Ch. Sainte-Barbe
- Ch. Beau Rivage
- Ch. Bel-Air (the one from St. Ferme)
- Ch. Lamothe Vincent
- Ch. Marsan
- Ch. Cru Cantemerle
- Domaine de Courteillac
- La Fleur Fomeyre