France: Wine, French Wine Regions, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, & More Profiled

2006 Domaine Charvin Châteauneuf-du-Pape, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2006
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

Charvin always makes a more elegant styled Chateauneuf with a larger amount of Grenache.  At age 15, this is drinking quite well.  Deep ruby in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has cherries, spices, slight dried floral notes and a bit of clean earthiness.  Medium bodied.  Bright acidity.  On the palate, cherries and black cherries with underlying spice, slight char and minerality.  Depth and layers of complexity.  Delicious.  Great on its own, this will excel with the right food such as beef or bean stew.  Fully mature, drink over the next ten years.  

1988 Château Margaux, France, Bordeaux, Margaux, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1988
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$800.00USD

It is always a treat to drink a mature First Growth.  This is fully mature and drinking beautifully.  12.5% abv according to the importer sticker on the bottle.  Purple/ruby in color with some browning at the rim, mostly clear and a bit flat.  The nose is dusty with cassis and tobacco.  With air some dried fruits come out.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, this has a vibrant acidity.  Nice cherry and black cherry fruit with some cassis.  Layers of complexity.  Fruit over spice and dried forest floor.  Nice finish.  This begs for food and went well with a roasted Brie but would work well with

1999 Château Palmer, France, Bordeaux, Margaux, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1999
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$295.00USD

Though 1999 is a good if not great vintage, Palmer is certainly one of the top wines of the vintage.  This is a blend of 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 46% Merlot, and 6% Petit Verdot.  It is at peak.  This bottle was opened at 2:00 and allowed to breathe until 5:00 when it was double decanted back to its original bottle and sealed before serving at around 8:00.  That seemed to be about right.  Garnet in color, ruby at the rim, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has cassis, black cherries, spice, cedar and floral notes.  Medium to full bodied.  On the palate, this is complex and layered.  Cassis

2000 Alter Ego de Palmer, France, Margaux, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2000
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$137.00USD

This is the second wine of Chateau Palmer and from the great 2000 vintage.  It is drinking very well now and likely at peak (not something I say often about 2000 Bordeaux wines).  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has black cherries, some cassis, a bit of baking spices, and leather.  Full bodied.  Just a wisp of tannins.  Enticing texture.  On the palate, this is delicious.  Cassis and some black cherry fruit with a bit of spice and tobacco.  Nice finish.  This drinks great on its own, but will be better with food.  Lamb would be a classic pairing.  Drink over the next five to eig

2000 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, France, Bordeaux, Pauillac, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2000
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$350.00USD

This was pop and pour and it really needs a long decant but even so, it showed very well.  From the heralded 2000 vintage, it seems to me that the better left bank wines are still in need of more cellaring.  A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot, and 6% Cabernet Franc.  Purple in color with ruby swirls but slight browning at the edge.  The nose is great with cassis, slight cigar box, cedar, some dark chocolate and spice.  Full bodied.  Lovely texture.  This is a big wine on the palate.  Juicy cassis, black cherries with chocolate and cedar.  Medium tannins.  Long f

2001 Château Cos d'Estournel, France, Bordeaux, St. Estephe, Wine Revew

Vintage: 
2001
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$213.00USD

Great showing for this wine.  The vintage was good if not great, but at age 20, this is vibrant and youthful.  Purple in color with some ruby swirls, opaque and bright.  The first sniff has that classic soy sauce note often found in Cos.  Also black cherries, cigar box, and slight roasted meats.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this has a great lush texture.  Medium tannins.  Lots of cassis with some smoke and a bit of earthiness.  Good acidity.  Long finish.  This was pop and pour and really could have used an hour or so in a decanter.  It needs a few more years until maturity but no harm in

1995 Frederic Esmonin Ruchottes-Chambertin, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1995
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$395.00USD

This kept improving after the cork was pulled but it took at least an hour to blow off its bottle stink.  At the two hour mark it finally hit its apogee.  If opening soon, give it some air.  From a vintage that does have its issues, this showed very well.  Ruby in color with some browning, clear.  The nose initially had some wet cardboard, but thankfully that blew off, so doubtful it was an off bottle.  In fact, at the two hour mark it showed cherries, dust, cedar and slight dry forest floor.  Medium bodied.  At the two hour mark, the palate had nice cherries, some slight macerated cherries

NV Salmon Champagne Montgolfière Sélection Brut, France, Wine Review

Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$35.00USD

First time trying  the producer.  A very nice reasonably priced Champagne.  It is a blend of 50% Pinot Meunier, 25% Pinot Noir, and 25% Chardonnay.  Apparently the last few generations of the family were all Hot Air Balloon enthusiasts so the label features a hot air balloon.  Light golden in color, clear and bright with a fair amount of smallish bubbles.  The nose is nice; toasty with some green apples and a bit of ginger.  On the palate, the toastiness comes thru along a nice minerality and some lemons.  Good acidity.  Nice finish.  This makes for a very pleasant start to an evening.  It

2005 Château Pavie, France, Bordeaux, St. Emilion, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2005
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$500.00USD

This wine was controversial on release due to its ripeness and size.  At age 16, it is still a big wine but starting to settle down a bit.  Just a bit.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, black cherries, toast, spice, black pepper and leather.  Full bodied.  Wonderful velvety/jammy texture.  On the palate, this is delicious.  Firm tannins.  Lots of black raspberry and cassis, some blueberries with spice and underlying leather.  It certainly may be atypical from St.

2005 Château Quinault L'Enclos, France, Bordeaux, St, Emilion, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2005
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$65.00USD

This is a blend of 70% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 6% Malbec.  Pop and pour, this took about an hour and then was drinking quite well.  Purple in color, thin ruby rim, opaque and bright.  The  nose is nice with black cherries, cigar box, slight dark chocolate, a bit of leather.  Medium to full bodied.  On the palate, cherries, black cherries and coffee with a bit of dried tobacco.  Good balance.  Seems to be almost or at peak at this point.  Great on its own, this will work well with prime rip or other roasted meats.  Drink over the next five to ten years.  

Pages