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External Reviews for Chateau Margaux France Bordeaux 1st Growth Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot
Another celestial effort from Paul Pontallier and Corinne Mentzelopoulus, the 2005 Margaux, a blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot, boasts a dense opaque blue/purple color as well as an extraordinary bouquet of spring flowers, blueberries, black raspberries, creme de cassis, licorice, and, despite its having spent two years in 100% new wood, only a subtle touch of toasty oak. Although full-bodied, the wine seems light on its feet because of the silky tannins as well as the great gravel terroir from which it comes. Beautiful purity, length, and nobility define this modern day classic. Is it better than the 2000, 1996, 1990, or some of the vintages from the decade of the eighties? Who knows, but it is unquestionably one of the all-time great wines made at Chateau Margaux. This estate has produced only exceptional wines over the last three decades. The seamlessness of the 2005 suggests it will perform well early, but it should last for a half century or more. Anticipated maturity: 2013ndash;2050+.
Absolutely compelling in two tastings of this vintage, the 2000 Margaux is composed of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Merlot. The extraordinary seductiveness, complex aromatics, and purity it exhibits lead me to believe it has reached its window of full maturity. Medium-bodied, with layers of concentration, stunning blue, red, and black fruits intermixed with spring flowers, a subtle dosage of new oak, and a distinctive personality that is elegant while at the same time powerful and substantial, this is a multi-dimensional wine that was extremely approachable and drinkable in both tastings I had of it. The color remains a healthy, even opaque bluish/purple, but there is no reason to hesitate to drink it. It should evolve for another 30ndash;40 years, so there is no hurry either.
Full, saturated red-ruby. Knockout nose combines redcurrant, tropical chocolate, leather, woodsmoke and nutty oak with exotic chocolate mint and coffee liqueur; still manages to retain floral lift even in this beastly vintage. Then wonderfully fat, sweet and full, even if it comes across as almost heavy following the ineffable 2005 and 2004 examples. But ldquo;relatively inelegantrdquo; for Margaux still suggests a degree of refinement that few chateaux can match in the greatest vintages. A hugely rich and dense wine that finishes with elevated but ripe tannins and great length, with a subtle suggestion of dry spices. Pontallier says the terroir will take over in 20 years, ldquo;like with the rsquo;82.rdquo; Splendid.
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 canrsquo;t tell. Itrsquo;s all glorious fruit. A legendary wine. Best after 2017.
Performing better from bottle than at any time in cask (which of course is the objective of great winemaking, isnrsquo;t it?), this wine reveals a dense ruby/purple color in a style somewhat reminiscent of the 1988 but with more power, concentration, and volume. It has a beautifully elegant nose of black fruits intermixed with truffle, flower, and oak. The wine is medium to full-bodied, dense, with wonderful precision, freshness, and a long, full-bodied finish with impressive levels of concentration. Anticipated maturity: 2010ndash;2030.
The 1995 has fleshed out, developed more intensity, in addition to some stunning aromatics since I tasted it last spring. It appears to be a sensational Chateau Margaux that should take its place alongside some of the great wines produced at this estate under the Mentzelopoulos regime. Will this vintage ultimately rival the 1990, 1986, 1983, or 1982? I doubt it, but this majestic wine is not far off the mark of those classics. The wine’s opaque purple color is followed by a fabulously sweet nose of black fruits, licorice, smoke, and the alluring floral scents that are so typical of Chateau Margaux. There is admirable flavor intensity and presence on the palate, as well as layers of black fruits, full body, and well-integrated toasty oak, acidity, and tannin. In comparison with other great vintages, it is not as creamy-textured and flattering as the 1990, but neither is it as backward and tannic as the 1986. Given the fact that it has developed so spectacularly in cask, this should be a Chateau Margaux to drink between 2005–2025.
[Barrel tasting] Lovely perfumes of blackberries, cherries, minerals and light toasted oak. Full-bodied, with super well-integrated tannins and a long, long caressing finish. A big, silky, sexy red. It has the potential to be 100 points. Fantastic. Margaux has such power, yet itrsquo;s refined and elegant. Still not in bottle in early December.
Food Pairings for Chateau Margaux France Bordeaux 1st Growth Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot
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