Thursday Night Tasting – 2007 Bordeaux Part Quatre

This was the clean-up Bordeaux tasting. George pulled together four red Bordeaux and one white. As you can guess, George presented the white wine last. Among the four reds, one was a second label of Haut Brion. Our assignment for the evening was to determine which wine was the second label. George just laughed at us when we asked if he was pouring the Haut Brion so we could compare it to the second label!

2007 Chateau Siran – The color was dark ruby. The nose was obvious with leather, vegetal and smoke scents. The flavors tasted of leather, dark fruit with a bit of vegetal flavor in the background. The tannins were significant and a little bitter. The acid was good. The finish was moderate in length with fruit and slight bitterness from the tannins. Most agreed this wine had concentrated, but not overly complex flavors and was drinking well now. No need to age this wine, as it may not improve, though the tannins may fade with time. This Cru Bourgeois is from Margaux.

2007 Chateau Les Carmes Haut-Brion – The color was dark ruby. The nose was pleasantly stinky initially, but blew off to leave scents of smoke, cooked sugar and ripe fruit. The flavors tasted like smoke, dark fruit and black pepper. The tannins were significant without bitterness and a good amount of acid was present. The finish was moderately long with tannins and fruit. Most felt this wine was not ready to drink and tasted a little rough. This will undoubtedly become a wonderfully smooth wine in 10 years.

2007 Chateau Malescasse – The color was dark ruby. The nose was stinky initially with underlying cooked sugar. The flavors contrasted with the nose. It tasted of tart, bright fruit and berries. A couple of people mentioned they would have thought this was a Grenache if they did not already know the varietal. The tannins were moderate with less acid than the previous wines, though the wine was well balanced. The finish was long with tannins and fruit. This wine is drinking nicely now. A discussion followed about high pH (low acidity) and aging. Brad Alderson, former wine maker at a local winery and wine chemistry expert, explained to us that in general wines with low acidity do not age well. He compared this wine to Grenache also which does not age particularly well for this reason. This Cru Bourgeois is from Haut-Medoc.

2007 Le Clarence De Haut Brion – The color was dark ruby. The nose smelled like coffee and dark fruit. The flavors were very complex with ripe rich fruit and spice. There were a lot of well integrated tannins and good acid. This wine overall was much more flavorful that the previous wines and tasted good now. Most everyone thought it would become outstanding with time, and would put it away to age. Almost everyone also guessed this was the second label of Haut Brion. The flavor profile was so complex and the wine so well balanced that it stood out among the others.

2007 Chateau De Fieuzal – The color was light yellow. The nose smelled pleasantly of tar – very distinctive. The flavors were floral, spicy and very complex. The flavors continued to evolve and change in the glass. There was a lot of acid in this wine and the finish was very long. This white wine was outstanding, and was not at all over powered by the red wines that preceded it. Amazing! This Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon blend was my favorite of the group! This wine, in George’s view, has made this chateau, as opposed to the red wines. He has been tasting this wine for years at the annual Bordeaux tasting and unfortunately, has watched the price of this wine increase substantially. If you have the opportunity to taste this wine, do so. You will be pleasantly surprised by the complexity and acidity of this wine. Chateau De Fieuzal is allowed by French law to produce both red and white wine in Bordeaux as it is located in Pessac-Leognan.

Next week we move on to another region in France, Cahors. Pete will be presenting the tasting which will include four Cahors and two Argentine Malbecs. Stay tuned!

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