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Cellar Favorite: 1990 Latour à Pomerol

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Apr 2024

The 1990 Latour à Pomerol epitomizes everything one could wish for in a mature Pomerol, but without paying a king’s ransom. Despite the highly regarded growing season, I approach this with modest expectations because these were not halcyon days for the estate.

Gruaud larose recent bottles

An Exploration of Time: Gruaud Larose 1831-2018

featured, France: Bordeaux, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Mar 2024

Do you want one of the most comprehensive reports on Gruaud Larose ever written? Do you want to know its history and first-hand information from proprietor Jean Merlaut? Do you want 70 tasting notes stretching back in time to 1831? You’ve come to the right place.

Bordeaux 2014 firsts

Test of Endurance: Bordeaux 2014 Ten Years On

featured, France: Bordeaux, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Mar 2024

The Bordeaux 2014 vintage has reached ten years of age, an ideal opportunity to look back, both in blind and sighted tastings, and see how the wines are evolving. As usual, there were plenty of surprises, not always positive, however.

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Cellar Favorite: 1948 Coufran

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Mar 2024

I do not wish to sound like a broken record, but allow me to reiterate the most sage advice I will ever dispense on old bottles of wine. Provenance is key. Perhaps even more than producer or vineyard, how that bottle has lived its life determines how it will show once released from incarceration.

Le dome ag 2021 bdx

2021 Bordeaux: L’Enfant Terrible

featured, France: Bordeaux

Antonio Galloni, Feb 2024

After three highly successful vintages, Bordeaux owners and winemakers were presented with a highly challenging growing season in 2021. En primeur tastings presaged a vintage with a high degree of variability. Extensive tastings from bottle confirm that initial first impression. Within that context, though, readers will find a wide range of compelling wines that merit attention.

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Cellar Favorite: 1973 La Fleur-Pétrus

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

The latest in the series of “Don’t dismiss a poor vintage ‘til you’ve tasted it first” is a bottle of 1973 La Fleur-Pétrus that was poured blind at the excellent Lorne restaurant in London in January. Several years earlier, at the inaugural “Grouse Club”, Lord Bruce had left us dumbfounded by a 1973 La Fleur-Pétrus from his legendary cellar. This bottle left us equally lost for words.

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2+2=5: Bordeaux 2021 In Bottle

featured, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

Bordeaux winemakers endured a tumultuous season in 2021. It is easy to say that the wines are inferior as a result. But years of experience have taught me that is not necessarily true. Wine can defy logic, as if two plus two equals five. Keep an open mind, and you’ll find pleasant surprises.

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Cellar Favorite: Château Latour: 2024 New Releases

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Antonio Galloni, Feb 2024

For more than a decade now, Château Latour has released their wines in bottle only after several years, when the team feels they are ready to start drinking. This year’s releases provide an opportunity to revisit wines from three very different vintages, each with something to offer. I tasted the wines with Technical Director Hélène Genin during a visit to the château in December 2023.

Coutet bottles copy

Come On Aline: Château Coutet 1943-2017

featured, France: Bordeaux, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

Château Coutet has been revered as one of Sauternes/Barsac’s most prestigious sweet wines for decades. This article delves into its long history, but as we discover, under the indefatigable Aline Baly, Coutet is an estate that constantly looks to the future.

Latour cover feb2024

Survive Us All: Latour 1858-2018

featured, France: Bordeaux, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

A First Growth vertical that spans 160 years and took over three years to complete? This epic tasting of Château Latour is virtually unique in scope. But instead of simply glorifying ancient vintages, this article painstakingly examines the backdrop to the wines, winemaking practices, those involved in their creation, critics’ reception, market prices and the ups and the downs of this storied estate.