The following wines were tasted in Los Angeles, Saturday, January 22, at the UGCB Bordeaux wine tasting held in the Barker Hanger at the Santa Monica airport.
Château Clerc Milon was already closing down. With coaxing, earth, tobacco, cedar and cassis aromas could be found. This lighter style of Pauillac wine ends with a chocolate covered, cherry finish. The vintage of Clerc Milon to buy remains the 2009. 90 Pts
Château d’Armailhac – This medium bodied Bordeaux wine offers tobacco, earth and cherry notes in the perfume. Light in style, the wine shows some green flavors in the finish. Similar to Clerc Milon, the strong 2009 d’Armailhac remains the wine to buy. It’s probably the best wine the property has ever produced. It’s also one of the best values from the Medoc in an expensive vintage. 88 Pts
Château Lynch Bages – Opens with cassis, tobacco, cedar, oak, earth and herbs, this full bodied, concentrated, chewy Bordeaux wine ends with a big, cassis filled finish. 92 Pts
Château Pichon Baron – This was one of two Bordeaux wines that were in such high demand to taste at the UGC event, they ran out before I was able to make my way to the table.
Château Pichon Lalande – This was an outstanding wine in barrel and it’s even better in bottle. The aromatics are filled with cassis, bitter chocolate, flowers and boysenberries. Suave, polished and with ample depth and freshness, this outstanding Bordeaux wine hits all the right spots with its sexy style. For fans of Pichon Lalande, this is the wine to buy. It pairs great style with quality and the ability to age. 96 Pts
Château Beychevelle Old school in style, the wine combines cassis, cranberry and earthy flavors. The finish has a hint of tart and green flavors along with the bright cassis sensation. Fans of old school Bordeaux wine will like this much more than I did. 88 Pts
Château Branaire Ducru – – Cassis, cocoa powder, chocolate, earth and cinnamon make up the intriguing perfume. Elegant, supple and already approachable, this Bordeaux wine ends with a strong, sweet cassis and spice filled finish. 93 Pts
Château Gruaud Larose – – Earth, cassis, truffle and cedar aromas lead into a full boded, cassis and black cherry filled wine. This Bordeaux wine will require time to develop. 90 Pts
Château Leoville Barton – – Big, powerful, tight and tannic, this masculine, chewy, Bordeaux wine fills your mouth with cassis and a lot of tannin. This was one of the more backward wines from the tasting. 90 Pts
Château Leoville Poyferre – – Sweet spice, earth, cassis, black cherry, coffee and truffles were easy to find. The full bodied, concentrated wine is filled with fresh cassis flavors in the long, polished finish. 93 Pts.
Château St. Pierre – This is the success story of St. Julien. The property was known for producing a strong wine in 1961. It took close to 45 years before they began making strong wines. Since 2005, they have been getting better every year. Chocolate, coca powder, cassis, earth, sweet black cherry and coffee bean aromas were coupled with a long, polished, cassis and blackberry filled finish that will drink well young and age for at least two decades. 92 Pts
Château Brane Cantenac – Tobacco, cassis, earth and truffle scents open to a medium bodied, soft, elegant style of Margaux. The wine ends with a dark cherry finish. This wine will offer pleasure early. 91 Pts
Château du Tertre – With perhaps the highest percentage of Cabernet Franc in the Medoc, (20% Cabernet franc was used in 2008) Du Tertre produces a unique style of Bordeaux wine. The wine expresses tobacco, spice, herbs and cassis. Soft in texture, the wine ends with a red and black fruit filled finish. 89 Pts
Château Giscours – Earth, truffle, tobacco leaf, cassis and notes of bitter chocolate are easy to find. The smooth textured, refined wine finishes with chocolate covered cassis sensations. 91 Pts
Château Kirwan – – This wine opens with floral cassis, earth and spice aromatics. The elegant, already open Margaux combines cassis and cherry flavors in the finish. 90 Pts
Château Labegorce – The perfume offers spice, tobacco, earth and cherry aromas. The wine ends with a red fruit and cassis flavored finish. 88 Pts.
Château Lascombes – Oak, earth, blackberry, cassis, fennel and pepper open to a plush, round, wine with an opulent, forward, personality. The percentage of new oak has been toned down, which is a good thing. 92 Pts
Château Malescot St. Exupery – – This pungent perfume shows flowers, earth, truffle, cherry pipe tobacco and cassis aromas. The wine is concentrated, deep and richly textured. There is a lot to like in this polished, sexy style of Margaux. And the best part is, it’s still for sale for about for $40! There are not many wines available for this price at the same level of quality. 94 Pts
Château Rauzan-Segla – I really wanted to retaste this wine. But by the time I made it over to the Margaux section, they had finished all their samples.
Château Cantemerle – Forest floor, earth, cassis and cherry aromas lead into a medium bodied wine with a light, red fruit finish. 88 Pts
If you have any comments or quesitons about these wines, or if you also tasted them at one of the UGC events and you want to compare notes, please feel free to share.
Tom… Sorry for not responding right away. 08 Pomerol is strong. Many of the top Pomerol producers do not belong to the UGC. Pontet Canet is not showing their wine with the UGC in North America this year.
I tasted Pontet Canet in bottle, as well as some of the top wines from Pomerol. If you want to see my reviews, http://www.thewinecellarinsider.com/wine-topics/2008-bordeaux-bottle-reviews-left-bank/
Did you attend the tastings?
Hey Jeff, thanks for these notes, seems more like a right bank vintage. I heard Pomerol 08 was pretty good. Did you happen to try Pontet-Canet 08, or was it not available?