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Primeurs : some comments in english from Kevin Shin, Kelly Walker, Jürgen Steinke

Par Mauss

Kevin Shin, an american Member of GJE as well as Kelly Walker or Wilfred van Gorp, have written some comments about some primeurs they did taste with us, with more to come.

You will find here too some comments from Kelly also about some wines tasted with Christian Roger and Laurent Vialette during an evening at Darroze restaurant in Langon. Quite some great wines, including a magnificent magnum of Petrus.

And some comments also about the wines tasted at GJE session inside the CRD by Jürgen Steinke.

From Kelly Walker, wines of the CRD session :

The Cercle Rive Droit and the Grand Jury Europeen organized a blind tasting with 2007 Bordeaux Right Bank wines from bottle. Those who don´t know Cercle Rive Droit: These group of Chateaux has about 140 members and included are Pomerol Chateaux and Saint Emilion Grands Crus but also estates from Fronsac, Lalande de Pomerol and Bordeaux A.C. plus Bordeaux Superieur.
As many wine lover already know: 2007 is not a big vintage for Bordeaux. Not on the Right and not on the Left Bank. The weather was a real disadvantage for every winemaker and rot and mildew were some of the battles the people in the vineyards had to fight. A late period of sunshine saved the Bordelaise from having a complete disaster. Many old people familiar with the situation reported that 20 years earlier the entire vintage would have been a loss but with modern winemaking things were different.
It was a challenge for the Chateau to make wines people are able to drink with pleasure anyway. And for a real wine lover it is important to stay away from prejudices. The best way to see what really is fact is to taste the wines blind. Me and the GJE Team tasted about 130 wines on 2 days in 4 sessions. In general it turned out that many of the wines had actually unripe tannins leading to a metallic and bitter aftertaste. But anybody with some experience knows that some wines with good quality do exist in quite any vintage. That was the case in 1987, in 1997 and now in 2007. It seems to happen every 10 years. Wait and see what 2017 will bring us.
To be clear: 2007 is not a vintage for people who like a ripe and full bodied style of Bordeaux since these character can not be found in the good wines of the vintage. Their style is a cool climate example of Bordeaux with moderate ripeness, sweetness and body. While the good examples of that year are not diluted their key point is not sweet and hedonistic fruit but the beauty can be found in their finesse, elegance and their ability to make good figure at the dinner table. One advise I would give to people who have 2007 wines in their cellar or who will buy a few bottles is to drink the wines not too cold since low temperature will favor the structure of the wines. While it´s always a good idea to drink full bodied and ripe wines a tad colder the opposite is true for wines with moderate ripeness.
The biggest mistake the Bordelaise made in my opinion was not wrong wine making or not going into church enough to pray for good weather. It was the initial pricing of the wines. Many people thought the prices were too high for wines with average to good quality. I have no idea but can imagine that retailer make good offers for the wines here and there today. So if one sees an interesting price for a good 2007 Bordeaux it´s probably a good idea to check it out.
These are the wines I liked and rated quite high in no specific order.
Fougas Maldoror
I always rate this wine high in Blind Tastings and the 2007 is in my top group again. It has a complex nose of black fruit, cold steel and flowers and the quality of the tannin is good.
Clos Dubreuil
In the nose I found berries and menthol, very good freshness, the tannins are bit drying at the moment but I guess with 2 or 3 more years in bottle this will be a really good drink.
Rol Valentin
A hypothetical blend of a Bordeaux and a Burgundy wine. Tannins are fine here and this is a beautiful wine IMO.
Feytit Clinet
This is the wine I gave the highest score in this Blind Tasting. Almost an opulent wine in the nose, cool, menthol, but sweet at the palate. This would be a very good wine in about any vintage.
Chateau de Pressac
I guess this wine could be had for a few Dollar/Euro and one can´t be wrong here for the price. It´s a masculine style of Bordeaux but IMO everything is at the right place. Good wine for those who love a hearty Saint Estephe for instance.
Peby Faugeres
No surprise this wine stood out. It offered a quite opulent nose with fine fruit, oak and minerals, at the palate the wine is sweet and it´s length is more than satisfying. Pretty good.
The difference to the big brother Peby Faugeres is not as big as one may believe. In fact I rated the Faugeres a tad higher. Maybe due to a lighter hand with less extraction which can be a favor in a year when the tannins are not very ripe? Interesting is the fact that in the Blind Tasting of the 2004 CRD wines Faugeres and Peby Faugeres were on top of my list either. Here is a top team underway obviously. Not to forget the Cap de Faugeres.
La Fleur de Bouard
Hubert de Bouard is able to make good wines and this wine is the proof. The wine is in full harmony and while it´s certainly not a powerhouse Mr. Bouard did everything right. Good wine and probably a bargain.
Quinault L'Enclos
The wine had a beautiful nose, is quite sweet at the palate and it´s balanced with good quality of the tannins.
Fleur Cardinale
This wine stood out also since it didn´t show the flaws not well made wines showed. In contrary the 2007 Fleur Cardinale is more than satisfying. Good wine.
Barde Haut
Is it possible that a wine of this vintage has a sexy nose? If so then the Barde Haut is the model. Some may call it modern but it was a joy to smell and taste this wine.
Jean de Gue
A wine I don´t know anything about but I must admit I rated it pretty high in this group of quite famous Chateaux. I think it needs a year or two of additional cellaring but is probably very good after that for accomplish a good steak.
With the Feytit Clinet on the top of my list. A roasted nose, fine coffee, sweet in mouth with silky tannins that end in a pretty long finish. This wine actually needs serious time in the cellar I guess but it´s really good and will surprise people who think any 2007 is mediocre (which is not true).
Cap de Faugeres
The third wine of the Faugeres group and this Cotes de Castillion carries it´s name with pride. Really good wine from an Satellite Apellation and again the proof that some wines from Cotes de Castillion, Fronsac or Lalande de Pomerol are as good as their more famous siblings.
I thought it´s a very well made wine with a nose of toasted oak, dark fruits, medium body as most of the wines and good tannins. Liked it.
Haut Carles
It seems this wine plays always a good role whenever it comes onto the table. It should be pretty cheap and if you are interested to know how the 2007 wines are this test is certainly able with little money.
Cote de Baleau
This is again a wine to a reasonable price making a good figure in the top group. IMO it´s a very good wine with fine fruit and tannins of real good quality. This is worth to check out.
This one ended only a point or two below my top wines. But it´s really funny. This simple Bordeaux Superieur is obviously able to impress in blind tasting. And the only reason probably is it´s real good quality.
The lowest score of the wines I listed was a 89 for the Reignac. The highest a 92/93 score for Clinet and Feytit Clinet.
Thank you Francois Mauss, the Cercle Rive Droit, Dr. Alain Reynaud and the team of Chateau la Dauphine where the tasting took place for organizing this event and for inviting me. It was really interesting.

Comments from Jürgen Steinke also about GJE session at CRD :

I was invited by Francois Mauss to taste the 2007 Cercle Rive Droit wines from bottle. I will write a full report about that blind tasting and post it a bit later.
Since I was in Bordeaux I was able to taste the 2010 CRD wines also.
First of all the 2010 vintage on the Right Bank is hardly comparable with any other vintage I know - and I follow the wines of Bordeaux more or less since 1982. What set the vintage apart is a high ripeness of the fruit with a solid acidity and high tannin. Normally wines of a year with high ripeness are marked by low acids. Not so 2010. Maybe we have go back to the vintage 1945 because the oldtimer reported about wines with good ripeness but a strong structure. Or 1928? I don´t know and it doesen´t make sense to speculate.
I think it´s important to remember everybody that the 2010 wines are still in progress and not finished. I guess the strong structure of some wines will soften with further ageing. But who knows that for sure? Even Robert Parker reminds us all the time that every new vintage is like going to school again. And something to have in mind also is that some people are more tolerant to acid in their wines or a certain amount of tannin than others. So the best advantage one can give is always: taste the wines yourself whenever you have the chance to do so.
Something that is clear to me: 2010 wine will have a long life. The good wines have everything needed such as tons of fruit but a solid amount of acid and tannin also. I don´t expect the top wines will make fun in their first years of life. And some of them will never loose a tannic character maybe.
As almost everybody knows already the alcohol level of the wines is high. But few of them show this high amount of alcohol when you taste them. I guess it´s because the acid is quite high so the wines don´t taste hot. This is really fascinating. Here were my tasting notes of the wines I tasted and liked in no specific order.
Fleur Cardinale
Nice fruit impression in the nose, sweet and fresh in the mouth, very balanced, very fine wine. 92-94 Jürgen Points.
Bellefont Belcier
Menthol and minerals in the nose, some dark fruits, very fresh, cool impression, nice sweetness but not too much of it, a style I like a lot, superb wine. 93-95 Jürgen Points.
Clos des Jacobins
Minerals and plums in the nose, elegant wine, beautiful, fresh, balanced, not too tannic, harmony, fine. 91-93 Jürgen-Points.
Rol Valentin
Complex in the nose, dark fruits, fine wood, minerals, balanced, very well made, coating tannins but they are silky, very good wine. 92-94 Jürgen Points.
New wood in the nose, sour cherries, very fresh, almost a cool climate wine but interesting, classic old style Bordeaux, but good. 88-90 Jürgen Points.
Dark fruits and oak in the nose, sweet in mouth, coating tannins, good length. 90-92 Jürgen Points.
Magrez Fombrauge
Very impressive, fine and complex nose, sweet in mouth, a huge wine but balanced, modern but impressive, coating tannins but very silky, ends very long. 95-97 Jürgen Points.
Menthol, cherries and new oak in the nose, very balanced wine IMO, fresh and sweet, elegant wine, well made but it will need some time in bottle  I guess. 90-92 Jürgen Points
Peby Faugeres
Beautiful elegant and complex nose, very balanced in mouth, cool fruit impression, very fine tannins, the wine came back at the finish. Superior length. 96-98 Jürgen-Points.
Clos Dubreuil
Fine nose, highly ripe fruit but good acid, a lot of extract. Modern wine. Quite a lot of tannins here. If they will integrate it will be a crowd pleaser. I guess not a wine for everybody but at the end I think it will be very good. 92-94+ Jürgen Points.
Croix de Labrie
Nice minerals in the nose, plums and cherries, sweet and sour, tannins a bit drying at the end. Will the wine becomes smoother and better balanced? 88-90? Jürgen Points.
Cote de Baleau
Fresh and fruity nose, a basket full of berries, sweet in mouth, a bit tannic, needs time but well made. 89-91+ Jürgen Points.
Barde Haut
Minerals and sour cherries in the nose, very balanced wine, nice mouthfeel, well made and very Bordeaux in style, good. 92-94 Jürgen-Points.
Clos de Madeleine
Sweet in the nose, sweeter than many but again freshness, but tannins tend to be slightly metallic at the end. 88-90+? Jürgen Points.
Lafleur de Bouard
Menthol and blue fruit in the nose, a bit of brett but still o.k., interesting flavours and aromatics, not modern or overdone, good wine. 90-92 Jürgen Points.
Vray Croix de Gay
Very nice and fruity nose, really beautiful, very Pomerol, nice sweetness, good acid, ripe tannins, if this is not to expensive it will be on my list. 93-95 Jürgen Points.
Wet stones in the nose, very fresh wine, cool impression, slightly bitter at the end. 88-90+
La Fleur de Gay
Shy nose, needed swirling, cool climate wine almost, nice sweetness and superb freshness, tannins slightly dry but I guess it will end as a very good wine. 91-93 Jürgen Points.
Feytit Clinet
This wine was top in the recent vintages and the 2010 is no exception. Sweet but again with a refreshing acid, fine quality, very good length. If the price is o.k. it´s on my list. 93-95 Jürgen Points.
Clos L'Eglise Pomerol
Very nice nose, elegant, a lot of harmony, nice sweetness compared with freshness (as quite always at this tasting), coating tannins, very long in mouth, very good. 94-96 Jürgen Points.
Bon Pasteur
Wine from the Master himself, Monsieur Rolland, and he doesn´t disappoint. It´s a very balanced wine with nice flavours and aromatics. The tannins are of very good quality. Top wine. 93-95 Jürgen Points.
Bourgneuf Pomerol
This was a surprise and a very good wine. Minerals in the nose, balanced at the palate, elegant wine, good tannins, really good IMO. 91-93 Jürgen Points.
Haut Carles
As so often a overachiever. Nice nose, a basket of fresh picked fruit, very well made wine with nice balance and a good finish. 89-91 Jürgen Points.
La Dauphine
Shy nose but with swirling plums and minerals can be found, sweet and fresh in the mouth, harmony, very good. 90-92 Jürgen Points.
Fougas Maldoror
I tend to always like this wine and the 2010 is the best I tasted so far from this estate. It´s a masculine wine with dark chocolate and dark berries and it will need some time in the bottle but with patience it will be nice I guess. 90-92 Jürgen Points.
Cap de Faugeres
Riper in the nose as many, some oak, nice sweetness at the palate but good freshness, for those who like the ripe style of Bordeaux, good. 89-91 Jürgen Points.
Le Prieuré
Well made wine, minerals, medium body and length but a classic Bordeaux that will be drinkable earlier I guess. 90-92 Jürgen Points.
Le Moulin
A well made Pomerol with a lot of Bordeaux style and harmony. I liked it and if the price is o.k. it´s a buy IMO. 90-92 Jürgen Points.
Minerals in the nose, a classic, sweet with nice acidity, very well made wine, I liked it. 91-93 Jürgen Points.
A Bordeaux Superieur but wait a minute. If you have it side by side with the more expensive bottles you will not feel it´s a minor wine. Maybe one of the wines of the vintage when QPR is your focus. 91-93 Jürgen Points. The white Reignac is a very good wine either btw.
Le Gay
A very traditional made wine in a very good way. It´s all about minerals, elegance, balance. This wine will need a long time in the bottle I guess but with time it´s probably a superior wine. 92-95+ Jürgen Points.
La Violette
Wonderful complex nose, a mixture of fruits, minerals, flowers, sweet in mouth but very fine structure like cashmere. Good length. 95-97 Jürgen Points.
My Grand Jury Europeen friends Kevin Sheen and Kelly Walker (top taster by the way) are still in Bordeaux while I am already at home. They will probably have additional information for you and maybe a different opinion here and there. And they did taste many Left Bank wines either, First Growth and other famous wines included.
BTW: Two Left Bank wines I tasted:
Haut Bergey
Wonderful nose, elegant, cool profile, sweet in mouth, again this textbook freshness, silky tannins, long finish, very good. 92-94 Jürgen Points.
It´s a wine to love and I was impressed. In the nose more complex than the Haut Bergey, coating tannins in the mouth but tannins of the best quality. Very long finish and a top wine. 94-96 Jürgen Points

Various comments from Kevin Shin :

After twenty some years of having passion for wines I finally feel that I have sufficient enough knowledge to properly assess the wines while still having good palate. Becoming a permanent member of GJE has enabled me to realize all my wine related dreams. This trip taught me a lot about the importance of vintage.
First my impression regarding the 2010s. Bob already posted his take and I don’t differ much. The fruit expression is very fresh and the wines show incredible concentration and noticeable tannins. Due to incredible level of glycelin, it is difficult to tell how ripe the tannins are. Incredibly concentrated sweet fruit and high clycelin level make these wines fun to taste yet hard to assess as most of the wines are very similar especially in the sub $50 categories. My two days worth of EP reports will follow later.
I ran into Cole Kendall at the dulles airport, I met Cole in my first OL in Feburary of 98, perhaps a good omen? He and I shared a lot of wines in the past. Cole was in his ways to Milan and since we were flying from the same terminal the time flew very quickly.
It was fun to catch up and share wine stories.
When I got to Bordeaux Wilfred Van Gorp arrived only ten minutes earlier and was waiting for me with our driver. We discussed our views on the current wine related events. We took a nice nap. We were the three American amigos as Kelly Walker was staying with us. Trying to soak up the experience, we decided to head to St Emillion.
There is a nice but unassuming wine bar where Mr. Vauthier hangs with his friends and we decided to stop by. As expected Mr. Vauthier showed and rank a glass of beer. Apparently Kelly and two Italian GJE members Orazioand Christian saw him again the next evening.
2006 Roumier clos de la bussière – initially not expressive but opened up with air. Dry cherry, mushroom, cinnamon, allspice, excellent balance and easy to gulp. 91 pts
We then headed to a bistro near the hotel and restaurant Plaisance. The bistro consistently serves excellent bistro fairs. I once again had a monster size juicy magret de canard.
2008 Dauvissat Le Clos
Exceptional bottle of grand crus Chablis, incredible minerality, lemon, bright acidity, perfect precision and balance, excellent concentration and long finish, complete wine.
2005 Clos Rougeard Saumur-Champigny Les Poyeux
Scorched earth, crushed blueberries, no sign of green cab franc, excellent balance almost Barolo like texture, silky 93 pts
Our sessions of tasting 2007 Circle de Rive Droite wines were extremely hard.
The growing season was challenging and the chateaus were either trying to extract too much resulting in boring ripe wines with dry tannins or soft wines with very little fruit, some even showed no fruits yet displayed dry tannins. Most of the wines were not able to achieve phenolic maturity and the heavy oak treatment made the tannins even more abrasive. The good news for both the producers and consumers is that 2009 and 2010 from the majority of the producers are incredibly good with excellent concentration without loosing the fresh expression of fruit. The 2008 also are good, fresh fruit, excellent concentration. The only concern is the dry tannins.
The dinner on Friday night took all GJE members to Chateau Siaurac in Lalande de Pomerol. During the 09 EP I ended up staying over at the Chateau and got to know the proprietor Paul Goldschmidt and his lovely energetic wife. Since Chateau and Estate is no longer in EP business I have been trying to introducing him to some DC retailers as I enjoyed Paul’s wines during the 09 EP. Paul greeted me with a big smile and generously opened the 83 Comte de Champagne Rose en Magnum. There were other champagnes but I didn’t take the notes.
1983 Comte de Champagne Rose
It has some caramel component and showed complex nose but fruit has faded Not a great bottle. 90 pts.
Since I enjoyed his wines last year I requested to taste his 2010s.
2010 Chateau Siaurac - Lalande de Pomerol
Jammy blue fruit, cassis, very masculine wine, fresh fruit expression with good concentration, the fruit expression is not too complex at the moment 89-91
2010 Chateau Le Prieure - St Emillion
Blue fruit, excellent concentration, silky, showing nice acidity.91-93 pts
2010 Chateau Vray Croix de Gay – Pomerol
The property is located near Chateau Lafleur. Very silky wine, the fruit expression is very fresh, silky, nice long finish. The tannin is very well integrated. 93-95 pts.
2009 Chateau Vray Croix de Gay – Pomerol
This wine has developed nicely. Very silky, nicely balanced, very harmonius. 93 pts.
During a couple of lunch at La Dauphine, we were able to taste a lot of Circle de River Droit wines. 2007s in general were pretty bad but there was a taste magnum of 2000 and a couple 2005s.
For the Saturday night, Laurent Vialette, a fellow GJE member and my drinking buddy, organized a memorable dinner at a restaurant that was located in outskirts of Bordeaux.
Three American Amigos and Christian Roger and Orazio Vagnozzi joined Laurent in this long and fun evening. Laurent generously opened some  incredible bottles including the perfect 1936 Chateau D’Yquem. Michel Bettane was dining with a couple whom we later found out the owners of Chateau Gilette. As Kelly posted in his thread It was a classic when the owner of Ch. Gilette ran back to the Chateau and retrieved a bottle of the 1936 Gilette CdT from the cellar for us to compare with the D’Yquem. I am almost copying Kelly’s TN word for word with slight input my own and rating.
1979 Krug
Fully matured with a hint of oxidation, baked apple and bread, nice acidity 94 pts
1982 Krug
More youthful and powerful. Very pure and long finish. 97 pts
Although the 1992 Leflaive Batard and Chevalier Montrachet are my two all time favorite wines, most 92s lack the acidity which makes the wine cloying. I really worry about the faith of the 2006s especially in lieu of the premox issue.
1992 Domain Etienne Sauzet Puligny-Montrachet 1er Les Combettes
Very fresh, incredible minerality, perfect precision but tasting these non-blind I thought two chevaliers had more complex fruit expression. 95
1992 Domaine Comptes Lafon Meursault 1er Les Charmes
Darker and more advanced. The palate shows excellent concentration but no acidity to counterbalance which makes the wine cloying and without  precision. With some air it got fresher but still a disappointment. This would have shown so well in the barrel as well as in the first ten years of the life but drink up. 90
1992 Domaine Bouchard Chevalier Montrachet
More complex fruit expression, not as fresh and not showing much mineral component as the Sauzet. Another drink up wine 91
1992 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier Montrachet
Finesse and power, got fresh, excellent length, at its prime if you wish to keep longer put it in the coldest part of your cellar 97
Next up a flight of older Volnay and Pommard
1959 Jean Clerget Volnay 1er
Minty, I though perhaps doctored, simple fruit expression but sweet 88 pts
1949 Jean Clerget Volnay 1er Cailleret
VA, caramel, interesting 86 pts
1945 Volnay Champans (producer unknown)
Complex nose of very sweet fruit, dry cherry, grapy, mushroom, black truffles and balsamico. This is a very complete wine showing why we love old Burgundies. 96 pts
1953 Jean Clerget Pommard 1er Rugien
The wine threw a lot of sediments which made the wine hard to assess but it showed beautiful sweet fruit and excellent concentration. N/R
1962 Petrus magnum
In perfect shape, very ripe dark fruit, extremely sweet, dark milk chocolate, all kinds of crazy tertiary note, strong presence of truffle, exotic and kinky. The wine got sweeter and sweeter and the last drop was the best after 3+ hours. 99 pts.
1955 Chateau Gilette Creme de Tete Barsac Sauternes
I am not a big fan of Gilette and this didn’t real help change my mind. The fruit expression was simple for such a mature Sauternes. Still fresh though. 93 pts
1936 Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes
Recorked in 1991 still very youthful redish dark amber. Incredibly fresh fruit expression, strong presence of botrytis, incredible concentration but airy palate and endless finish. 100 pts
1936 Chateau Gilette Creme de Tete Barsac Sauternes
True a great wine in its own but almost cloying compare to the Y’quem, the fruit sweeter and unctuous palate. 96 pts
1949 Chateau d'Epire d'Anjou Grand Cru Savennieres
1973 Armagnac Francis Darroze Domaine de Bidadus
Beautiful Armagnac but I was done drinking so a couple snips.
As mentioned above, incredibly concentrated sweet fruit, high level of glycerin and noticeable tannin made the wines hard to evaluate. Based on small sample of the classified growth I am not quite sure whether I would have rated the first clearly higher than the rest if I were to tasted the wines blind. In terms of the right bank wines, there were several that were very special, ie very complex fruit expression and seamless silky palate. If you plan to open the wines young and the top 40s in the next twenty years, I would go with the 09s for sure.
97-100 pointers were Beausejour Duffau Lagarrosse, La Violette and Mouton
The wines of Angelus were not showing well. Gerard Perse wines were big monsters with incredible amount tannins. To be continued....

From Kelly Walker :

An amazing night of old Krug, Burgundy, Petrus & Sauternes

Saturday night myself, Kevin Shin, Wilfred Van Gorp and three other GJE bretheren (Orazzio, Christian and Laurent) made our way down from Bordeaux to the town of Langon in Sauternes for a dinner at Restaurant Claude Darroze. Laurent expertly handled all the wines, as always.

We started out on the patio for some amuse bouche and champagne.

1979 Krug
This had a lovely patina and offered baked apple and intense brioche with a fresh finish. 95 That bottle went so fast we decided to move right to the next.

1982 Krug
A step up this bottle was perfect. Very youthful and powerful on the palate. Very pure classic Krug profile. Tense and powerful. 96

As it turned out Michel Bettane was having dinner in the adjoining dining room with the owners of Chateau Gilette. We sent glasses of wine over to him throughout the evening and he would periodically come over to discuss.

Sitting down at our table we proceeded on to a flight of 1992 white Burgundy.

1992 Domain Etienne Sauzet Puligny-Montrachet 1er Les Combettes
Absolutely no signs of age this is a focused super mineral driven wine. Loads of pit fruit this continued to improve rounding out with time in the glass. 95

1992 Domaine Comptes Lafon Meursault 1er Les Charmes
Darker and more advanced. This offers up a fat and buttery palate that on its own would be great but lacks the focus of the Sauzet. 92

1992 Domaine Bouchard Chevalier Montrachet
Creamy texture this offers up real Chevelier richness and intensity. Does not quite deliver on the finish. 90

1992 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier Montrachet
Wow! This has full on Montrachet power on the palate. Very rich and intensly fat but perfectly balanced. Incredible length with an almost endless finish. 97

Next up a flight of older Volnay and Pommard

1959 Jean Clerget Volnay 1er
Rather simple but still providing good fruit on the palate. 89

1949 Jean Clerget Volnay 1er Cailleret
A touch of volatility on the nose. This improved with time. Good sweet fruit. 90

1945 Volnay Champans (producer unknown)
Beautiful deep color. The perfume is staggering. Loads of sweet fruit with really fine ripe tannins. Stunning. 97

1953 Jean Clerget Pommard 1er Rugien
This was sent over by Michel Bettane. Very smoky and concentrated. 88

Then a shift in gears.

1962 Petrus magnum
An absolutely perfect bottle with high fill and good cork. The nose started out with a glorious nose of truffle and sweet red fruits. The nose changed to ripe plum and asian spice. Extremely complex and powerful on the palate. The palate evolved int a creamy mouth coating melange of fruit compote. Very exotic. Food in the mouth. 99

Finally, some stickies.

1955 Chateau Gilette Creme de Tete Barsac Sauternes
Loads of ripe sweet dried apricot. A touch of bitterness on the finish. 94

1936 Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes
A perfect Yquem in every way. Brilliant acidity balances great fruit density. Floats on the palate with an infinite finish. 100

So this is where it got really cool. We had sent a glass of the '55 Gilette and '36 Yquem over to the Bettane table. So the owner of Ch. Gilette ran back to the Chateau and retrieved a bottle of the 1936 Gilette CdT from the cellar for us to drink. How cool is that?

1936 Chateau Gilette Creme de Tete Barsac Sauternes
Very fresh apricot on a really long finish. Near perfect balance. Just a notch down from the Yquem. 98

1949 Chateau d'Epire d'Anjou Grand Cru Savennieres
This was slightly corked so Laurent performed the Saran Wrap treatment to it. It actually worked well but seemed to take something from the wine.

1973 Armagnac Francis Darroze Domaine de Bidadus
A nice finish to an amazing dinner.

As a group we voted for overall favorite wines of the night:

1. 1936 Ch. d'Yquem
2. 1962 Petrus
3. 1945 Volnay
4. 1982 Krug
5. 1992 Leflaive
6. 1936 Gilette All these comments were also published of Mark Squires forum.  Thanks a lot to these GJE Tasters for their comments.

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