Grand Cercle Primeurs 2017 tasting of wines from 2016
If you want a bottle of wine to taste nice and be reliable, then the vagaries of Bordeaux vintages is not for you.
On one level, the idea that some years are better than others is an affront to common sense - why would you wish for weaker years just so that better years can be rarer?
Why have less of a good thing?
But we do not live in a monological world in which all Bordeaux vintages are uniformly adequate - and no more.
And that's the fascination - every year is different and some are better than others.
If that sort of logic does not appeal, then look away now.
The Bordelais have established an unenviable reputation for declaring every year the vintage of the century.
But, make no mistake, 2016 is a very good year.
The wines at this tasting were all ripe, full and substantial - there is no lack of quality base material here. The only question is the quality of the winemaking.
Ch Mazeyres ripe, plump, perfumed, fresh and substantial. Very Good Indeed.
Lalande de Pomerol
Ch Siaurac fresh, focused, precise, substantial and harmonious. Very Good.
Saint Emilion GC
Ch Montlabert plump, supple and full; pure and focused with food underpinnings. Very Good.
Ch Malescasse ripe, plump, supple; harmonious with some grip and fine tannins. Very Good.
Ch Haut-Breton Larigaudiere plump and lifted with ripe fruits; fresh with a muscular core. Very Good.
Ch La Tour de Bessan inky pencil shavings, fresh with fine-yet-firm tannins. Very Good.
Ch de Cerons inky pencil shavings, substantial and harmonious with fine tannins. Very Good.
Ch Roquetaillade La Grange plump, supple, substantial and harmonious with fine tannins. Very Good.
Ch Haut Bacalan fresh, inky pencil shavings; substantial, ripe, harmonious and supple. Very Good.
Ch Haut Lagrange fresh , pure, plump, substantial and harmonious. Very Good.
Chateau Saint-Robert "Cyber Poncet-Deville" fresh, substantial and structured Sauvignon-based dry white. Very Good.
Ch de Myrat complex, honeyed-beeswaxy, fresh, floral and substantial. Very Good Indeed.