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Bordeaux Wines

Bordeaux Wines

Bordeaux Wines

Bordeaux Wines

Even among the greatest and most reputable wine regions on the planet, Bordeaux stands above the rest, as a god would on a seemingly unreachable mountaintop. The winemakers of this region have a single-minded dedication to the fine art of viticulture and their efforts never fail to show. If you like to consider yourself a fine wine enthusiast, you owe it to yourself to visit Bordeaux because it will change your life. Whether you wish to drink some inspirational and gripping wine as soon as possible, or you want to add some masterpieces to your collection to impress your friends and loved ones, no region on Earth is a more obvious choice.

The noble and beautiful Garonne and Dordogne rivers surge through southwestern France, enriching the soil in a way very few other places can boast. The limestone-based earth is rich in calcium, and the almost oceanic climate conditions give the staple Bordeaux grape varietals vigor and flavor like nowhere else. For their illustrious reds, Bordeaux winemakers rely on a proven combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Meanwhile, a sip of their excellent white wine hints at the use of Semillon, Muscadelle and Sauvignon Blanc. Each of these varietals carries a unique identity, making every quality wine a character piece to rival Citizen Kane.

It can be incredibly hard to choose only a few wines to collect for your cellar, because there are so many options that you don’t want to miss. At Sokolin, we’re here to help you select wines that stand out in any collection, and can turn any gathering into a lifelong positive memory for your friends and loved ones. Let’s enjoy Bordeaux’s finest together.

Popular Bordeaux wines

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1981 pavie Bordeaux Red

I’ve always had a soft spot for the 1981 vintage as well as these two châteaux. This was the first vintage of Bordeaux that I bought, back in 1984, with some knowledge of the region (or so I thought at the time) and Cos because the first serious vertical that I ever attended was of their wines from 1982 back to 1952. Pavie? Well, to be honest, it was the label that drew me in at first, being all old-timey Bordeaux and all. The first Pavie that I bought was a 1979 from a wine shop in Boston and from the get-go I was hooked on the blend of power and finesse that a St.-Emilion from a great terroir can exhibit. Being able to visit both of these estates in late June of 1989, on the same broiling hot day, sealed the deal.Ninteen eight-one is what some would derisively call a ‘classic’ or ‘restaurant’ vintage. In the old days some would say ‘a useful vintage’ for the fact that the wines are mostly to be drunk while waiting for “great” vintages to mature or to keep ones’ hands off of already mature ‘great’ vintages resting in the cellar. That belittles wines such as these two, I think, because more times than not I crave a graceful, finely delineated and less dramatic wine than one from a blockbuster vintage. Both of these bottles deliver the goods.Purchased by a good friend on release here in New York, both the Cos and the Pavie are decidedly at peak but based on these bottles there’s no need to fear the reaper. The Cos is a textbook rendition of the old style at the châteaux, with intense cigar box, dried cherry, licorice and pipe tobacco character and smooth, harmonious tannins that have all but faded away. As might be expected, the Pavie is more dramatic in character, but still showing the restraint that’s been typical of the ‘81s since release, offering a haunting, floral- and spice-dominated bouquet and plush, seamless plum and cherry flavors. Like the Cos, it’s fully mature but there’s no sign of undue fatigue, either. In both cases, pretty remarkable for 34 year-old wines from a vintage that’s now been mostly forgotten, but not by me.Vinous Media | 91 VM

As low as $300.00
1982 canon Bordeaux Red

This wine shows fabulous aromas of stones and flowers with dried fruits and spices. It’s subtle yet full with ultra-fine tannins and a gorgeous, long finish. Drink now.James Suckling | 97 JSA consistently spectacular 1982, this wine provided sumptuous drinking the first 5-6 years after bottling. Since the late eighties the wine has become more structured without losing any of its power, fat, or concentration. It is capable of lasting at least another decade, although I will not quibble with any readers who can no longer defer their gratification. The dense color reveals no amber. Young, primary aromas of black fruits, toasty oak, crushed stones, and flowers dominate the wine’s moderately intense nose. Thick, rich, full-bodied, and multi-dimensional, this is unquestionably the most concentrated Canon I have ever tasted. This large-scaled, super-rich, sweet wine is one of the rare Canons that possesses more depth of fruit than tannin. Drink it over the next 10-15 years. Anticipated maturity: Now-2018. Last tasted, 12/02Robert Parker | 94 RP(Château Canon) The 1982 vintage of Château Canon continues to drink beautifully and is really one of the more flamboyant vintages I have ever tasted from the property. The superb bouquet jumps from the glass in a blaze of black cherries, menthol, a hint of nutskin, a beautifully complex base of limestone soil tones, woodsmoke and a touch of toasty oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and very sappy at the core, with excellent focus and grip, melting tannins and a very long, voluptuous and classy finish. A complete, very complex and utterly marvelous Canon. (Drink between 2018-2050).John Gilman | 94 JGShows mint, black tea, [i]sous-bois[n] and sandalwood notes that are distinctive and alluring. Long and refined on the finish, with supple black cherry and boysenberry fruit gliding throughout. Wins mostly on aroma, but there’s still sneaky depth and length here. Lovely.—Non-blind Canon vertical (December 2016). Drink now through 2022.Wine Spectator | 93 WSUnfortunately, the magnum of 1982 Canon poured at dinner was not showing well, though another bottle tasted in Bordeaux attests a decent Saint-Émilion in a period when the estate was long overdue investment. Fully-mature, the nose does not possess the vigour of say, the 1982 Figeac, though there are pleasant hung gamey notes and a scent of a Tuscan delicatessen. The palate has a nice mouthfeel, quite fleshy with tobacco and leather-tinged red fruit; the finish is still quite rustic but with charm in spades. A fine Canon, though not top-flight, and bottles should be drunk soon.Vinous Media | 90 VM

96
WS
As low as $460.00
1982 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

(12.8% alcohol; 54 h/h): Amber-tinged red; based on other bottles I have tried, the color of this particular bottle seems slightly more evolved than usual. Penetrating aromas of strawberry jam, raspberry, red cherry, orange peel, flowers and minerals. Enters bright, dense and linear, with very pure flavors of red cherry, citrus, minerals, marzipan and subtle herbs. Finishes very long and pure, with a strong peppery note, a lingering coffee nuance, and chewy, mounting tannins. Complex and multilayered, this is a very impressive wine, magically combining fleshy depth and pure aromas and flavors without being overripe or heavy. I was told in the past by a local wine lover and expert that the 1982 Cheval Blanc actually contains 5% malbec in the final blend, but nobody can confirm this at the estate. The season began warm and dry during April, then turned very hot in July and very dry between August 10 and September 20. It was then hot again in September, with the harvest taking place between September 20 and October 2. Mid-flowering occurred on June 5 and mid-veraison on August 9. A very famous, much sought-after wine, the 1982 Cheval has often been scored 100 points by other wine critics. I’m not sure this bottle was quite up to that lofty standard, but it is undoubtedly a great wine.Vinous Media | 96 VMAll in harmony. Deserves its reputation. Dark ruby. Smoke, black truffle, berry and cherry. Full-bodied, velvety and fine.--Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2005.Wine Spectator | 96 WS(Château Cheval Blanc) This wine has now been very shut down for the last four or five years, and though there is so much raw material here that the wine is still a joy to drink, bottles sampled today only represent twenty-five percent of what this wine will show at its glorious apogee. The bouquet is unmistakably Cheval, with scents of black cherries, bell pepper, dark chocolate, menthol, tobacco, herbs, espresso and vanillin oak wafting from the glass. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, deep, black fruity, and totally dense at the center, with excellent structure and delineation, great length and grip, and a fair bit of ripe, well-integrated tannin framing the finish. This is very elegant and only medium-full on the palate today (in notable contrast to its thick, luxurious and voluptuous youth), with great depth now buttoned up quite tightly at the core. I would opt for burying this treasure for at least another decade. (Drink between 2010-2060)John Gilman | 96+ JGThe 1982 Chateau Cheval Blanc is fully mature at this point and there’s certainly no upside, although it should keep for a decade. Mature red and black fruits, cedary spices, leather, flowers and dried flowers all flow to a sweetly fruited, sexy, open knit and ready to go wine that has resolved tannin and a good finish.Jeb Dunnuck | 94 JDIt shows a slightly verbal edge to it now with green coffee bean and currant leaf and fruit aromas. It’s full and silky with lovely tannins, but dried dark fruits with balsamic undertones on the palate. The Cabernet Franc is coming out more in this bottle. Fascinating wine.James Suckling | 93 JSDuring its first 10-12 years of life, this was a perfect wine, but it now seems to be in a stage where the fruit is still present, but the previous exuberance and intensity have faded slightly. There is plenty of amber at the edge, and this medium to full-bodied wine shows notes of menthol, cedar, spice box, plums, and black cherries. Owners of 750 ml bottles should plan on consuming it over the next 4-6 years. Magnums should be less evolved, and merit a score 4 to 6 points higher.Robert Parker | 92 RP

100
TWI
As low as $1,625.00
1982 clos fourtet Bordeaux Red
As low as $215.00
1982 pavie Bordeaux Red
As low as $370.00
1983 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

A red that I have always appreciated. Beautiful aromas of licorice, spice, flowers and dried fruits such as prunes. Full-bodied with soft and fine tannins and ripe fruit. The rich, dried fruit character was fabulous with minced Peking Duck in lettuce leaf.James Suckling | 96 JSA giant of a wine. The complex aromas and thickly textured flavors range from plum and raisin to coffee, minerals and mint. Not so elegant as a typical Cheval; more in the mold of the powerful ’47 and legendary ’21. Drink or hold.--Cheval-Blanc vertical.Wine Spectator | 96 WSA classic example of Cheval Blanc’s style, the 1983 continues to put on weight and develop favorably in the bottle. A saturated dark ruby color with some faint lightening at the edges exhibits less age than most right bank 1983s. The huge nose of mint, jammy black fruits, chocolate, and coffee is sensational, as well as surprisingly well-developed. The wine offers lusty, rich, unctuous fruit presented in a medium to full-bodied, low acid, concentrated, rather hedonistic style. There are no hard edges to be found, but there is plenty of tannin in the lush finish. Gorgeous for drinking now, this is a great Cheval Blanc that should continue to drink well, and possibly improve for another 20 years. The 1983 is far superior to anything Cheval Blanc has subsequently produced. It remains somewhat undervalued for its quality. Last tasted 12/97.Robert Parker | 95 RP(Château Cheval Blanc) Along with Ausone, the ’83 Cheval Blanc has long been one of the greatest wines of this vintage and it is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon. The wine has gone through periods of glorious drinking, followed by much more closed cycles over the years, but it seems now at age thirty to have finally reached the start of its plateau of maturity and I would be very surprised to see it shut down ever again in its lifetime. Today, the deep, pure and vibrant nose wafts from the glass in a youthfully complex blend of mulberries, menthol, black cherries, a touch of chocolate, tobacco leaf, lovely soil tones and a nice touch of toasty new wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and very elegant on the attack, with a superb core of fruit, great focus and complexity, and a very long, balanced and modestly tannic finish. The tannins today have fallen away to the point where this wine is very enjoyable to drink, and yet I still have the sense that the wine is relatively adolescent in its stage of development and more fireworks will still be unveiled if one can exercise a bit more patience. This is a great vintage of Cheval Blanc! (Drink between 2013-2050).John Gilman | 95 JG

96
WS
As low as $800.00
1985 ausone Bordeaux Red

(Château Ausone) The 1985 vintage of Château Ausone was not particularly touted when it was released, but this is a great wine that should ultimately prove to be one of the greatest Ausones of the decade of the 1980s. The bouquet is deep, pure and youthfully exotic, as it soars from the glass in a very vibrant blend of baked cherries, blood orange, menthol, woodsmoke, glorious soil tones, a touch of dill and a potpourri of other more classic fresh herb tones. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and very intensely flavored, with a sappy core of fruit, great soil inflection, ripe, well-integrated tannins and superb length and grip on the tangy finish. A classic Ausone in the making, I would not touch the ’85 for another decade, despite the fact that it is already quite accessible. There are just too many layers of complexity still to unfold here to be opening bottles right now! (Drink between 2020-2070).John Gilman | 94 JGPure fruit aromas of raspberry and strawberry; full-bodied with fine tannins.Wine Spectator | 92 WS

94
WS
As low as $595.00
1985 pavie Bordeaux Red

Yet another winner from Pavie. Caresses the palate and defines elegance. Lovely mint, berry and chocolate character. Full-bodied yet very refined. Better after 1997.--The Bordeaux 50.Wine Spectator | 91 WS

91
WS
As low as $280.00
1986 canon Bordeaux Red

Elegant and refined, offering lots of lovely aromas and flavors of cherry, berry and roasted meat. Full in body and very silky in tannins. Try in 1997.--Canon vertical.Wine Spectator | 90 WS

90
WS
As low as $170.00
1988 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

Berry, cherry and chocolate on the nose, with hints of spices. Full-bodied, with chewy tannins and a spicy, cedary, dark chocolate aftertaste. Very silky and caressing. Grabs your attention. Muscular for Cheval. Overlooked by many Cheval fans.—’88/’98 Bordeaux blind retrospective (2008). Drink now. 12,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 93 WS(40 h/h; 12.5% alcohol): Bright red. Very pure floral nose with enticing aromas of redcurrant, violet, minerals, licorice, lead pencil and coffee: very cabernet franc! Then linear, pure and juicy, with pristine flavors of red berries, dark plum, minerals and coffee. This midweight finishes clean and smoothly tannic, offering amazing balance and an impression of seamlessness on the long, very floral finish. As much as I like its pure aromas and flavors, I find this Cheval Blanc lacks a little density for an even higher score. This was an overall dry and cool year, with some rain present only in the first part of the year, which caused some mildew pressure. The dry conditions started at the end of July and never really let up; from July to September, there was less than two inches of rain. Flowering was late, taking place on June 10, and veraison on August 20. Harvested during the first ten days of October.Vinous Media | 92 VM

93
WS
As low as $680.00
1988 pavie Bordeaux Red
As low as $340.00
1989 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

I tasted this at a separate 67 Pall Mall event a few months ago, and it has delivered just as well this time around - impressive for a 30-year-old wine, as bottle variation is inevitably a concern at this age. Yet again it sings out with its concentration and opulent, silky blackberry and cassis fruits. The finish is lifted, with a white pepper note giving an extra kick to the juice, although there are plenty of tertiary hints in the toasted walnut notes. July, August and September of 1989 were stunning, with 13% more sunshine than average across all three months. Cheval always gets an early start to harvest, but this was the earliest of the 20th century to this point, running from 7 to 27 September, with a yield of 50hl/ha. It was owned by the Hébrard family at the time, with Gilles Pauquet as consultant. Drinking Window 2019 - 2032Decanter | 98 DECThe 1989 Cheval Blanc is a vintage that I have not encountered since 2010. One bottle opened was rustic and fatigued, and Pierre-Olivier Clouet opened a second that was much better. It has a gorgeous bouquet of ample red fruit, morels, black truffle, cigar box and hints of brown sugar, all very well defined and charming. The palate is medium-bodied with grainy tannin and approaching full maturity; brown spices, bay leaf and clove infuse the red berry fruit. At 30 years of age, I suspect this 1989 will not improve further, but its robustness suggests that any decline will be graceful. Tasted from an ex-cellar bottle at the château.Vinous Media | 95 VM(Château Cheval Blanc) The 1989 Cheval Blanc is a beautiful example of the vintage, offering a deep, complex and utterly classic nose of dark berries, black cherries, menthol, cigar ash, gravelly soil tones, woodsmoke and a base of toasty new wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and very pure on the attack, with a rock solid core of sappy fruit, outstanding soil inflection, superb complexity and a very, very long, youthful and ripely tannic finish. While this wine is not particularly far away from fully blossoming and will be quite drinkable with another four or five years of cellaring, I would be very strongly inclined to not touch a bottle for at least another decade, as I would love to see this wine in the same magical spot as the 1983 Cheval is today. (Drink between 2016-2050)John Gilman | 94+ JGRipe, almost cooked fruit, with nuts, raisin and spices. Full-bodied, with a dense palate of ripe fruit and a leathery, spicy, dried berry character. So long and powerful. Chewy. This is big and very juicy, with loads of powerful fruit. A little alcoholic, even rustic, but I like it.—’89/’99 Bordeaux blind retrospective (2009). Drink now.Wine Spectator | 93 WS

98
DEC
As low as $800.00
1989 pavie Bordeaux Red

All elegance and fine texture. Beautiful aromas of milk chocolate and ripe berries. Full- to medium-bodied, with silky tannins and a sweet fruit, chocolate aftertaste. Hard to resist now.--1989 Bordeaux horizontal. Best after 2000.Wine Spectator | 90 WS

91
WS
As low as $370.00
1990 beausejour duffau Bordeaux Red

One of the most singular Bordeaux I have ever tasted, it verges on being port-like, but it pulls back because of the extraordinary minerality and laser-like focus. The wine is massively concentrated, still black/purple-hued to the rim, and offers a nose of incense, blackberries, blueberry liqueur, acacia flowers, and forest floor. It reveals low acidity and high tannins, which are largely concealed by the sheer concentration and lavish glycerin the wine possesses. Aging at a glacial pace, it is approachable, but it will not hit its peak until 2020; it should last for twenty years thereafter. Release price: ($1200.00/case)Robert Parker | 100 RPLiquid cashmere. Stupendous St.-Emilion. Dark ruby color. Wonderful aromas of blackberries, preserved cherries, Indian spices and violets. Full-bodied, with fabulously polished tannins and a long, long finish.--1990 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2006. 3,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 98 WSParker made this wine a legend when he gave it 100 points on release. And I have had perfect bottles in my life of it. BTW, the 1989 is almost as good. This bottle that I had this week in Hong Kong was very, very closed and not giving the opulent character that I have encountered in this wine. It had been decanted three hours in advance and I still triple decanted it after tasting it because it was so shy on the palate. The 1990 Beausejour Duffau-Lagarosse seems to be going through a dumb period right now but it shows some fascinating dried fruit, mushroom and earth character. It’s full and chewy. I would leave it for a year or so and come back. A living, sort of bitchy wine at the moment.James Suckling | 96 JSDeep ruby to the rim. Extravagant aromas of black fruits, violets, and toffee. Voluptuous and sweet; this has outstanding concentration but with so much baby fat there’s little delineation on the palate. Finishes with a kick of alcohol and substantial ripe tannins. Very dense, but while a flight of other top right-bank wines were sending off fireworks in the glass, this chunky wine sat like a lump of coal.Vinous Media | 91 VM

100
RP
As low as $1,799.00
1990 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

The standout wine of the entire tasting. Powerful, smooth, mouthfilling sweetness, still deeply coloured. You will find it hard to track down this wine on the market today, and even more difficult to avoid paying crazy sums for it, but I can assure you that it stands out for the intense, finely picked-out, fleshy fruit notes of sweet damson and plum unrolling against smoked coffee and liquorice notes. Truffles, tobacco and exotic spices are all here – and it’s hard to imagine how it can have done better. Oh, and Le Petit Cheval in this vintage was 98% Cabernet Franc, so another one to look out for if the beauty of the Cabernet in the main wine is anything to go by. Harvest 11-25 September, 40hl/ha yield. They made 76% first wine and 12% Petit Cheval, with the rest sold off in bulk. Drinking Window 2018 - 2032Decanter | 100 DECThis wine has overtaken its closest rival, the 1982. Dense ruby purple with only a bit of lightening at the edge, the explosive nose of black fruits and cassis intermixed with coffee, menthol, and leather is followed by an opulent, splendidly concentrated wine that is sheer nectar. With no hard edges, gorgeously integrated glycerin, tannin, acidity, and alcohol are all present in this seamless classic. The wine has been gorgeous since youth, but is now revealing more aromatic and flavor nuances into the game. This is spectacular stuff! Anticipated maturity: Now-2015. Last tasted, 12/02.Robert Parker | 100 RPThe 1990 Chateau Cheval Blanc is fully mature at this stage, with a complex, Burgundian style in its forest floor, sweet red and black fruits, dried flowers, cigar tobacco, and spice-laced aromas and flavors. Possessing an ethereal, elegant texture, full body, resolved tannins, and no hard edges, it’s a heavenly example of this terroir that’s drinking at point today. There’s no upside here, but it should keep nicely for another 15-20 years.Jeb Dunnuck | 98 JDThe 1990 Cheval Blanc is a vintage that once upon a time I drank regularly, although I had not seen it since March 2016. Poured against the 1990 Lafite-Rothschild, this is the clear winner. Still youthful in color with modest bricking. The bouquet explodes from the glass with kirsch, mulberry, antique furniture and black truffle scents. With aeration it becomes more savory, the Cabernet Franc wanting to see more of the olfactory action. The palate is medium-bodied and comes equipped with a stunning velvety texture. This Saint-Émilion feels spherical, conveying a sense of controlled decadence but avoiding any ostentation. This is as good a bottle as I have encountered over the years. Brilliant. Tasted at Noble Rot’s “Xmas” dinner.Vinous Media | 98 VMThis is really wonderful and a big surprise for the tasting with wonderful flowers, dark berries and hints of currants on the nose. It’s full and very silky with a wonderful precision and finesse. Goes on and on. Wow. What a finish. This is a buy call. So outstanding. Just a baby but a joy to drink.James Suckling | 97 JSDark ruby red. Superripe aromas of raisins, dried plums and intense truffle. Full-bodied, chewy and layered, with lovely ripe fruit. Such beauty. Serious Cheval.--Bordeaux retrospective. Drink now. 12,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 93 WS

100
DEC
As low as $1,485.00
1990 pavie Bordeaux Red

Ripe and fresh. Just what it should be. Deep ruby with red hue. Loads of chocolate, vanilla, tobacco and ripe fruit. Full bodied with lots of velvety tannins and a long finish.--1990 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2004. 12,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 92 WSMedium healthy red. Expressive aromas of smoky oak, toffee, redcurrants, and a trace of herbs. Thick, velvety and smooth, with substantial fat. Broad more than intense right now. Lingering, sweet finish; ripe tannins are substantial but currently buried in fruit.Vinous Media | 90 VM

92
WS
As low as $345.00
1990 tertre roteboeuf Bordeaux Red

An absolutely spectacular Tertre Roteboeuf, probably the only other vintage that will reach this level of quality is the 2000. The 1990 has a deep plum/ruby color with some lightening at the edge and an extraordinarily flamboyant nose of jammy black cherry and berry fruit infused with smoke, caramel, and coffee notes that soar from the glass. This is a very viscous, full-bodied, silky textured wine has a to-die-for finish and enough glycerin and body to get lost. It is just entering its plateau of full maturity. A wow-wow wine! Anticipated maturity: Now-2015. Last tasted, 12/02.Robert Parker | 98 RPDeep red-ruby. Fabulous nose of toffee, coffee, smoke, cinnamon, minerals and a faint animal quality. Extraordinarily thick entry; great density and sweetness but with plenty of underlying acidity and backbone. As with the voluptuous ‘89, there’s lovely delineation of flavor beneath all the glycerine. Finishes with a wave of melting tannins. Kept revealing additional nuances as it opened in the glass. Along with the ’90 L’Angelus, a great example of what can be done with controlled yields, 100% new oak, and - minimal filtration. This wine is now putting most of Bordeaux’s bigger names to shame.Vinous Media | 94 VM

94-96
RPNM
As low as $490.00
1990 troplong mondot Bordeaux Red

A fabulous example, the 1990 Troplong Mondot is only equaled by such recent vintages as 2000, 2005, and 2008. The inky/garnet/plum/purple-colored 1990 exhibits notes of coffee, blackberries, licorice, camphor, and espresso. Rich and full-bodied with lavish fruit, high glycerin, low acidity, and stunning purity, it is still several years away from full maturity, and should last for another 10-15 years. Release price: ($425.00/case)Robert Parker | 98 RPA blockbuster. Amazing. I love Port, and this is close. Dark color. Very, very ripe on the nose. Full-bodied and very chewy, with loads of fruit and concentration in tannins. Mouthpuckering. Needs time.--1990 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2006. 10,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WS

98
RP
As low as $435.00
1994 Cheval Blanc

Good medium color, less saturated than the ’95. Pungent, vibrant aromas of sappy berries and resiny oak, with an intriguing floral nuance. At once thick and polished on the palate, with an herbal, peppery complexity. Very long, subtle aftertaste, with some vanillin oak and a slight tannic edge. Not quite as ripe or seamless as the ’95, but a very classy, intensely flavored wine that should put on weight in bottle.Vinous Media | 92 VM

91-93
VM
As low as $550.00
1995 ausone Bordeaux Red

Flower and berry character, with hints of clove and black pepper. Full-bodied and very rich, with decadent flavors. Oozes with ripe fruit. Goes on and on. Fabulous.--’95/’96 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2008.Wine Spectator | 96 WSAusone’s extraordinary minerality is present in the 1995, yet there are more aromatics, a richer, more multidimensional palate impression, and a fuller texture - all with the terroir brilliantly expressed. The wine boasts a dense ruby/purple color and an emerging but tightly-knit nose of spring flowers, minerals, earth, and black fruits. Rich, with an opulent texture and surprising sexiness for a young vintage of Ausone, the medium-bodied 1995 displays exquisite balance between its acid, tannin, alcohol, and fruit. Although it is not yet seamless, all the elements are present for an extraordinary evolution in the bottle. This wine will age at a glacial pace for 30-40 years. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2045. Last tasted, 3/01.Robert Parker | 93 RPDeep violet-tinged ruby. Lively cassis, black cherry, tobacco and smoky oak aromas. Lush and dense, though a bit shocked by the bottling. Combines the penetrating, juicy quality and class of previous vintages of this wine with the more opulent texture and suaver tannins craved by so many of today Bordeaux lovers. May well eventually merit a higher score, but will it surpass the ’96?Vinous Media | 92+ VM

96
WS
As low as $755.00
1995 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

(a 53/47 blend of cabernet franc and merlot; 13% alcohol; yield of 45 h/h): Bright red. Pure aromas of strawberry, flowers, soy sauce, espresso and minerals. Then clean and straightforward on the palate, with nicely balanced flavors similar to the aromas. Finishes very long and smooth. A very good Cheval Blanc, bigger than the 1996 but perhaps a touch less delineated; choosing between the two amounts to a case of different strokes for different folks. This was a warm year: temperatures during the 1995 growing season were on average 1.5°C higher than the previously recorded annual averages, with a very hot July and August, and the harvest took place early, between September 15 and 28. In fact, only the 1989 and 1990 harvests began earlier.Vinous Media | 93+ VMMedium ruby-garnet edge. Intense aromas of plums, cherries and dark chocolate. Full-bodied and very tight, with supersilky tannins and a long finish. Solid core of fruit. Still holding back.--’95/’96 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2009.Wine Spectator | 93 WSA pretty, attractive Cheval Blanc, the 1995 contains a higher percentage of Merlot in the final blend than usual (50% Merlot/50% Cabernet Franc). This wine has not developed as much fat or weight as its younger sibling, the 1996, but it appears to be an outstanding Cheval Blanc with an enthralling smoky, black currant, coffee, and exotic bouquet. Complex, rich, medium to full-bodied flavors are well-endowed and pure, with surprisingly firm tannin in the finish. Unlike the sweeter, riper 1996, the 1995 may be more structured and potentially longer-lived. Anticipated maturity: 2002-2020.Robert Parker | 92 RP

95
RP-NM
As low as $925.00
1995 figeac Bordeaux Red

(Château Figeac) 1995 was the fiftieth vintage for Thierry Manoncourt and the château designed a special label to mark the anniversary. Happily, Monsieur Manoncourt was blessed with a great vintage to mark his fiftieth, as the 1995 Figeac is a stunning wine. The bouquet is deep, complex and blossoming beautifully at age seventeen, jumping from the glass in classic mélange of red plums, black cherries, Cuban tobacco, bitter chocolate, cigar smoke, sweet nutty tones, complex soil nuances and a deft framing of new oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, pure and starting to really develop its secondary layers, with a fine core of fruit, lovely focus and complexity, bright acids and excellent length and grip on the perfectly poised and suavely tannic finish. A beautiful vintage of Figeac. (Drink between 2015-2055)John Gilman | 95 JGBest Figeac in years. Loads of blackberry, chocolate and stones. Full-bodied and concentrated with masses of tannins and fruit. Long, long finish. Needs time. Best after 2002. 9,500 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WSTasted at the Château Figeac vertical at the property from one of the last remaining imperials, one could argue that the six-liter format would have benefit the 1995 Figeac. Even so, that should not take anything away from this, the best vintage of that decade. Firstly, one notices that it is deeper in color than the underwhelming 1996. Then you fall into the aromatics, a beguiling concoction of blackcurrant pastilles, melted tar and tobacco all beautifully preserved after two decades. What differentiates it from the succeeding vintages is that here there is the fruit to back it up. The palate is fresh and quite dense in the mouth. The acidity is perfectly matched to the fruit, lively with a touch of piquancy on the ebullient, red cherry and wild strawberry finish that still has a bit of glycerin. The 1995 is the best vintage between 1990 and 2001, and represents a worthy wine to celebrate Thierry Manoncourt’s 50th vintage. Tasted June 2015.Robert Parker Neal Martin | 92 RP-NMVery good full color. Lively, thoroughly ripe aromas of redcurrant, sweet butter, minerals and spices. A step up in concentration from the last two wines; full and sweet, with a mineral pungency brightening the fruit. Offers lovely finishing sweetness and dusty, ripe tannins that reach more of the mouth. Very rich but graceful wine.Vinous Media | 91 VM

95
WS
As low as $299.00
1996 ausone Bordeaux Red

I do not understand the critics of Alain Vautier, who now has sole control of Ausone and is taking the estate’s quality to a higher level. Moreover, the wine is consistent, with great depth and richness on the mid-palate, without sacrificing Ausone’s 40-50+ years of longevity. As I suspected, the 1996 is beginning to shut down. I left it in the glass for nearly 30 minutes and was impressed with the nuances that developed. The color is a dense ruby/black/purple. Reluctant aromas of blueberries, blackberries, minerals, flowers, truffles, and subtle new oak eventually emerge. Elegant on the attack, with sweet ripeness, and a delicate, concentrated richness, the hallmark of this wine is subtlety rather than flamboyance. A sweet mid-palate sets it apart from many of the uninspiring Ausones of the eighties and seventies. The wine is stylish, and presently understated, with tremendous aging potential. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2040.Robert Parker | 93 RPThe 1996 Ausone is a vintage that I have tasted on four or five occasions. This was similar to previous examples with a very floral and outgoing bouquet, those wilted violet petals infusing the boysenberry and blueberry fruit, quite glossy in style, one of the most modern of that decade. It certainly has more intensity than earlier vintages. The palate is medium-bodied with sweet and ripe tannin, impressive acidity and weight although it does not revel in the complexity of other vintages, perhaps because the growing season did not favour the Right Bank. There is a touch of headiness on the finish that is a little otiose but otherwise this is a thoroughly enjoyable Ausone. Tasted at the Ausone vertical in London.Vinous Media | 92 VMComplex aromas of blackberry, coffee, cedar and lightly grilled meat. Full-bodied and very structured, with silky tannins and a long, caressing finish. Slightly hollow center palate.--’95/’96 Bordeaux retrospective. Drink now.Wine Spectator | 92 WS

94
RP
As low as $730.00
1996 cheval blanc Bordeaux Red

At 56% Cabernet Franc, this is a bright, floral Cheval Blanc, with white pepper, strawberry, mineral and oriental spice notes lingering nicely. Drinking Window 2015 - 2036Decanter | 95 DEC(a blend of 56% cabernet franc and 44% merlot; 40 h/h): Bright red. Fresh floral, white pepper, raspberry and strawberry aromas on the captivating nose, lifted by minerals and Oriental spices. Very fresh, balanced and pure on the palate, with bright red berry, floral and delicately smoky plum flavors. Very cabernet franc, and very Cheval Blanc! The lively, harmonious acids keep this wine light on its feet and really extend the flavors on the back half. The long finish features a subtly spicy kick and smooth tannins. A touch more density and it would have scored even higher. The harvest took place between September 28 and October 4.Vinous Media | 93 VMMedium ruby, with a garnet edge. Aromas of plum and fresh herbs, such as basil, that turn to cedar and cigar box. Full-bodied, with soft, silky tannins. Long and flavorful, with subtle chocolate, berry and light coffee aftertaste. Gorgeous.--’95/’96 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2007.Wine Spectator | 91 WSThe elegant, moderately weighted 1996 Cheval Blanc reveals a deep garnet/plum, evolved color. Quintessentially elegant, with a complex nose of black fruits, coconut, smoke, and pain grille, this medium-bodied wine exhibits sweet fruit on the attack, substantial complexity, and a lush, velvety-textured finish. It is very soft and evolved for a 1996. Anticipated maturity: 2000-2015.Robert Parker | 90 RP

95
DEC
As low as $679.00
1996 clos fourtet Bordeaux Red

I have never tasted such an impressive Clos Fourtet. I had it on three different occasions, and it was consistently brilliant. The stunning black/purple color is accompanied by aromas of sweet blueberry/blackcurrant fruit interwoven with wet steel/mineral-like scents, and subtle oak. Hugely concentrated, yet only medium-bodied, this dense, thick, gorgeously pure, well-balanced wine is the finest Clos Fourtet made in the last 3-4 decades. Although there is plenty of tannin, it is sweet as well as beautifully integrated, so I suspect this wine will evolve more rapidly than many wines of this vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2003-2020.Robert Parker | 90-92 RP

92
RP
As low as $185.00

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