2008 Château Lafite Rothschild, France, Bordeaux, Pauillac, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
99
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$1000.00USD

In a tasting of the top 2008's from Bordeaux, this was the WOTN (and mine) for drinking right now.  Of course, none of them are fully mature and need at least a decade.  This is a very special wine.   83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc.  Deep purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is classic with cassis, graphite, cedar, and cigar box.  On the palate, this is intense.  Lots of great cassis fruit intertwined with earthiness and cedar, it unwinds in layers in the glass.  The finish is very persistent and even seems to grow on the palate.  Great balance.  This is a w

2008 Château Mouton Rothschild, France, Bordeaux, Pauillac, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$600.00USD

This is 83% Cabernet Sauvignon and 17% Merlot.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is very strong with cassis, plums, graphite, and cedar.  On the palate, this is deep and tight.  Not giving up a lot of details but the total package is delicious and gorgeous.  Firm tannins.  Lots of cassis and "purple" fruits.  Great balance.  An underlying cigar box earthiness.  Long finish.  Like a lot of the 2008's, it seems just a hair behind the "great" vintages which makes this less expensive and more available and still a great vintage.  Cellar this for a decade or three, and it will certain

2008 Château Margaux, France, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$465.00USD

This is 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.  It is a classic Margaux with a perfumed nose and plenty to seduce the palate.  Deep ruby in color.  The nose has cassis, spice and floral/perfumed quality to it.  On the palate, this has medium tannins.  Lots of cassis fruit with minerality and slight cigar box.  Medium tannins that get a bit stronger in the glass.  It is very young but still accessible.  It is an outstanding wine that will require time to develop.  It has another couple decades for us to see how good it gets.  The group I tasted it w

2008 Château La Mission Haut-Brion, France, Graves, Pessac-Léognan, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$240.00USD

This is 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot, and 6% Cabernet Franc.  This was one of the least expensive wines in this magnificent tasting and really stood toe to toe with all of them.  Purple in color.  The nose has cassis, smoke, graphite and minerals.  Very expressive if not huge.  On the palate, there is a wonderful texture.  Cassis with layers of minerals and char.  Great balance.  Long finish.  This really took some time to open in the glass but then just kept getting better.  It seems like it will need another decade to fully mature and then have a couple more after that (which seems

2008 Château Haut-Brion, France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$450.00USD

This is  50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot and 9% Cabernet Franc.  A gorgeous wine that is still very young.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is pretty classic for Haut Brion with cassis, crushed gravel, slight asphalt and strawberries.  On the palate there are silky but firm tannins.  Deep and complex, the layers unwind in the glass.  Cassis and black cherries, slight strawberries over gravel and earth.  Great balance.  Long finish.  This needs  another ten years to maturity and should be there for a couple more decades after that.  It is delicious right now but give it air. 

2008 Pétrus, France, Bordeaux, Pomerol, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$2500.00USD

100% Merlot.  This proved to be a bit controversial.  Some of us loved it while others merely liked it.  Of course, served along side the First growths, the Merlot based wine might be at a disadvantage for those preferring Cabs.  Personally, I thought it was a stunning wine.  It kept opening up over the three hours it was in my glass (with an occasional refill).  As an aside, there is something wonderful about having a waiter ask you if you would like just a bit more Petrus in your glass.  :-)  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is very pretty with cherries, slight cassis, a bit of

2008 Château Cheval Blanc, France, Bordeaux, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$475.00USD

This is a blend of 55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Franc.  It had been decanted for about four hours.  It is drinking quite well right now and just a very pretty wine.  Not the powerhouse of some vintages but it will certainly hold its own.  Deep ruby with purple swirls in color.  The nose has cherries, soy sauce, black cherries and spice.  On the palate, there are cherries and black cherries with an underlying char.  Nothing about this wine is under ripe or green.  Very nice acidity.  Medium tannins.  Very long finish.  This went quite well with food.  It improved slightly in the glass but ove

2005 Château La Confession, France, Bordeaux, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$80.00USD

Time has been great for this bottle.  At age 14, it is a stunning bottle of Bordeaux.  Probably at or close to peak but with years left.  Purple/ruby in color.  The nose is fresh with cherries, cigar box, slight earthy funk and slight spice.  On the palate, this has complex layers of cherries, black raspberries, and tobacco.  Great balance.  Long finish.  This drinks well on its own because of the complexity but really shines at the dinner table with meat and roasted dishes or stews.  This is a great example of buying affordable Bordeaux in great vintages and letting them age.  It can still

2015 Realm Cellars The Bard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$145.00USD

A question that comes up on occasion is whether a $125 bottle can be considered a value.  In this case, I say yes.  A Napa Cab of this quality often costs 4 times the price and rarely less.  The Bard is consistent from vintage to vintage and a truly great wine.  This is a blend of 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot and the remaining grapes are Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.  Inky purple in color.

2015 Palazzo Red Cuvee, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

Nice to get a chance to revisit this.  It has come together nicely and improved a bit since release.   50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, and 25% Cabernet Franc.  This is made from those barrels which did not qualify for the top wines.  Purple in color with some ruby at the rim.  The nose is nice with cherries, tobacco, sour cherries, sandalwood and anise.  On the palate, this is drinking great.  I doubt it gets any better but certainly has another five years.  Lots of red fruits and a bit darker with some earthiness.  Light tannins.  Nice finish.  This will go with a wide variety of foods

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