As you may have already heard, 2015 was an incredible vintage for Bordeaux. It was especially a remarkable year for Margaux, not just Château Margaux (which received a perfect 100 points rating by Neal Martin at the Wine Advocate), but the whole Margaux appellation. For that reason, we selected 4 different Margaux wines for our members to have a horizontal tasting. A horizontal tasting allows a range of wines to be sampled at the same time. In this case, the range is fairly limited: 4 different wines from the small village of Margaux. This provides an opportunity for our members to discern and appreciate the differences of the same style of wine. What's best of all? All these wines are still reasonably priced. If you identify what really strikes your fancy, you can still buy a case or two for cellaring over the long term. For an incredible vintage like 2015, the long term could be 20-45 years.
The 4-bottle selection for February 2019 includes:
Château Dauzac 2015 - "The 2015 Dauzac is a blend of 72% Cabernet Sauvignon and 28% Merlot, the highest percentage of the former in recent years, and matured in 60% new oak barrels. It has a tightly wound but precise bouquet with scents of blackberry cassis and a hint of violet - very polished and focused. The palate is medium-bodied with grainy tannin, pure black fruit laced with graphite and spice, gently building in the mouth, finishing with a precise and quite sustained, Pauillac-inspired grace. This is an excellent wine from the estate that will give 20-25 years of drinking pleasure." - Neal Martin, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (4/27/2016, Issue 224), Ratings: 91-93, Drink: 2020-2045
Château Cantenac Brown 2015 - "The 2015 Cantenac Brown follows their excellent 2014 with another great Margaux. Here, a nuanced nose that does not come racing from the blocks, but keep your nose in the glass and it reveals detailed blackberry, cranberry and strawberry aromas that are neatly embroidered with the new oak. The palate is medium-bodied with fine, quite tensile tannin. There is breeding interwoven into this Margaux, palpable sophistication, and it finishes with panache, fanning out with lightly spiced red and black fruit. It is not the most ostentatious Margaux in what is a fecund season for the appéllation, but I suspect it will surprise a few wine-lovers as its ages." - Neal Martin, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (4/27/2016, Issue 224), Ratings: 92-94, Drink: 2020-2045
Château Marquis d'Alesme 2015 - "The 2015 Marquis d'Alesme Becker is composed of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. It has a deep garnet-purple color and a broody, earthy/meaty nose over a core of crushed black currants, plum preserves and blackberry pie with hints of Indian spices and potpourri. The medium to full-bodied mouth displays a great core of rich black fruit flavors and a firm frame of ripe tannins plus seamless acid with a long, earthy finish." - Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (2/21/2018, Interim Issue), Ratings: 94, Drink: 2021-2039
Château Prieuré-Lichine 2015 - "One of the best vintages I have tried from Prieuré-Lichine - this was excellent during en primeur and even more so now it's in bottle. Restrained elegance and precision are on display, balancing out the oozing, rich damson fruit and the well placed liquorice edging. Well balanced, the fruit is cleanly cut and held, the ripe black fruits spliced in two. Poised, with good ripeness, a standout for me. 50% new oak barrels, Stéphane Derenoncourt consults." - Jane Anson, Decanter Magazine, Ratings: 96, Drink: 2025-2042