Woman on Wine with Amy Reiley
Bordeaux is a wine region where weather can bring extreme ups and downs to vintages. The past few years have brought us some stellar releases, particularly those from 2009 and 2010. I’d heard that 2011 was somewhat of a letdown as compared with the two previous years. Or perhaps it is simply a normal, dare I say average, year? I recently had a wonderful chance to taste a selection of 2010’s and 2011’s at a tasting hosted by Grand Cercle Des Vins de Bordeaux. I can honestly say that although the 2010’s tended to be the exciting wines, 2011 certainly brought many delicious bottlings. Here’s a little taste of both vintages to whet your appetite for some springtime Bordeaux.
2011 Chateau Cap Léon Veyrin
What the 2011 vintage seems to have produced for this vineyard is everything that is sexy about Bordeaux. A medium bodied wine with slightly vegetal notes, it is gamey and feral with the kind of sweaty note that makes the mouth water for more.
2011 Chateau Croix Cardinale
From the family behind Fleur Cardinale, this “second label” represents a delicious and affordable buy from the 2011 vintage. It is an easy wine with moderate tannins, yet one that is worthy of cellaring for a few years. A Merlot-based blend, it offers black fruit acidity, hints of dark chocolate and loads of sexy spice.
2010 Chateau La Cardonne
This is a burly bottling that is only just coming of age. A wine that will probably show best in a few years, it is showing floral and berry fruit on the nose, blackberry and black cherry fruit flavor, remarkably chewy tannins and a deliciously long finish.
2011 Chateau du Parc
This Merlot-based blend is a lovely, approachable bottling. Its aroma is pretty with blueberry and plum and an attractive, earthy undertone. It has great texture and a lovely freshness with black and red fruit flavors and a decent length.
2010 Chateau Patache d’Aux
This Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend is one I personally find intriguing. Its aromas are foresty and floral, the texture unexpectedly silky. The fruit notes are red and black currant with coffee, cedar and something delightfully woodsy.
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