This years "en primeur" tasting seemed like a journey in time. Bordeaux is back to a more moderate alcohol level and the style is lighter and more elegant. One could say the wines are reminiscent of the 80s, however made with more experience and the modern techniques today. It is not a powerful vintage. The wines are elegant, however the well made ones have an excellent persistence, depth and length. They offer a convincing potential for a long ageing and promote elegance in Bordeaux again. It is a true vintage of terroir although there is a lot of talk about a vintners vintage. However, terroir was the decisive factor in 2021.
Professor Axel Marchal has presented the 10 key points of this vintage on the occasion of the Union des Grands Crus press tasting:
"1. The start of the growing season was marked by severe frost on the 7th and 8th of April.
2. Wet and gloomy weather in May slowed down the vine growth although a providential window of fine weather helped flowering unfold in ideal conditions in early June.
3. Thunderstorms in June slowed down the onset of water stress.
4: Cool, dull weather in July increased the threat of vine diseases.
5. Véraison (colour change) was observed in mid-August, while vine growth had not stopped yet.
6. Thanks to a cool summer, the dry white wines are brilliant, lively and aromatic.
7. The wonderful Indian Summer allowed the red grape varieties to ripen in ideal conditions and preserved aromas.
8. The Merlots are fresh and aromatic while the Cabernets from the finest terroirs are well-structured with good balance.
9. The development of Botrytis cinerea in Sauternes was delayed by the cool summer and eventually triggered by rainfall in mid-September.
10. Despite low yields, the botrytised sweet white wines are of excellent quality."
It will be exciting to see the evolution of this vintage which produced in many cases yields on a very low scale. Arguably it will be a vintage praised for it finesse in the future. A vintage rated on finesse and persistence rather than on sheer power and opulence.”
1m 15d ago
The 2019 vintage was tasted under pandemic conditions in spring 2020. At that time, the samples were sent to Essen and tasted within 48 hours after arrival. Now the vintage has been bottled and it is possible to double check the impressions just a year and half later. Overall the quality was excellent, proving the excellent style of the vintage. Some wines were performing better than during the primeur tastings, however most of the wines confirmed the quality already on show in spring 2020. As there are still samples coming in, there will be more tastings over the coming days and I will publish a second set of wines shortly before Christmas and in January some "late arrivals".”
6m 16d ago
2020 – the paradox vintage - part two”
1y 1m ago
The second part of the arrivage tasting of the 2018 vintage from Bordeaux features a wide array of wines with some great surprises. The quality of the vintage 2018 is fully confirmed with a number of wines performing better than they did before en primeur.”
1y 5m ago
A great surprise just before the weekend: a pallet with over 120 wines from the Grand Cercle arrived. So another long tasting day is waiting for me.”
2y 22d ago
2017 is a vintage bringing back Bordeaux to its roots, offering a very classic wine style with lower alcohol levels than in the previous years but with often excellent aromatic expression. 2015 and 2016 have surely been better vintages than last year, but based on a first impression 2017 seems to be better than 2014. The evolution will show, that 2017 is far from becoming a "forgotten vintage". Some nice surprises will be waiting for us.”
4y 14d ago
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