Union des Grand Cru Tasting

Lighthouse (Pier 61, Chelsea Piers)
Tasted Monday, January 26, 2009 by jrobs7777 with 632 views

Introduction

Due to the quick sip and pour, sip and pour nature of this tasting, I am only offering impressions based on my expectations, with some very superficial notes. My expectations are based on my own (duh) expectations along with the Zachys pricing of these wines, since that pricing guide was the reference I had with me.

Flight 1 - Medoc, St. Estephe, Pauillac, St. Julien (25 Notes)

  • 2006 Château Greysac

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. The 06 showed poorly next to the 05.

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  • 2005 Château Greysac

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. This should be a great QPR for years to come and showed very well next to the 06. Good 05 to drink now.

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  • 2006 Château La Tour de By

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. Watery and not much there.

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  • 2005 Château La Tour de By

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Nothing special but stacked up well compared to the 06. A good 05 to drink now, but at this price point, you may be able to find better.

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  • 2006 Château Lafon-Rochet

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. A good Bordeaux. I actually thought the 06 was comparable to the 05 for this wine and may be a better value.

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  • 2005 Château Lafon-Rochet

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Very overwhelming cedar notes. I preferred the 06 of this wine to the 05.

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  • 2005 Château Phélan Ségur

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. A bit too tannic, rather plain. I preferred the 06 of this wine to the 05.

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  • 2006 Château Phélan Ségur

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Nice finish, good fruit. I preferred the 06 to the 05.

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  • 2005 Château Les Ormes de Pez

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. This was a pleasant surprise, exhibiting nice complexity, good dark fruit and aging potential. However, this ready to dirnk now as well.

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  • 2006 Château Les Ormes de Pez

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. This did not not stack up when tasted against the 05. Some heat, nothing really going on.

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  • 2005 Château Lynch-Bages

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. This was obviously a very popular table. The wine merely lived up to expectations -- good but what should be expected from a respected chateau in the 05 vintage. Nice density and a good finish.

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  • 2006 Château Lynch-Bages

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. From a value standpoint, this is a much better deal than the 05. I think the 05 is overpriced. The 06 is a nice combo of sweet and smoky with a medium finish.

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  • 2005 Château Clerc Milon

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. I had high hopes for this, especially after tasting the 06. I have a bottle of the 2000 stowed away and this producer produces consistent wines. I thought the 05, when measured against its counterparts, was subpar. It was an average wine, but that is not enough for 05 prices.

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  • 2006 Château Clerc Milon

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expecations. I was very impressed with the 06 vintage for this wine. This is a well integrated, fruit effort with good amounts of cedar. At this price point, a good value. Unfortunately, the 05 failed to live up to expectations.

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  • 2006 Château Pichon-Longueville Baron

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. We only had a chance to taste the 06 of this wine. This was a very nice effort, dense with nice dark fruit. With other 06s priced considerably lower, I would not be running out to buy this but it is a good wine.

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  • 2006 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. A good effort. Nice fruit and a medium finish. At this price point for an 06, there are much better values to be had.

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  • 2005 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. Good fruit and density. A disappointing finish. For an 05, and particularly at this price, this needs to be better.

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  • 2006 Château Grand-Puy Ducasse

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. I was not particularly impressed with either the 05 or 06 of this wine. Seemed rather simple. Surprisingly, the 05 retails for less than the 06.

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  • 2005 Château Grand-Puy Ducasse

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. I was not impressed with either the 05 or 06 of this wine. The 05, which retails for cheaper than the 06, exhibits a bit more complexity and has a nice spice note to it. But overall, these were simple and sandwiched at a bad spot between the Pichon and the Pontet Canet.

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  • 2006 Château Pontet-Canet

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. This is a nice 06 and should develop with time. Bright red fruit, which was a bit unexpected. Develops some complexity in the mouth.

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  • 2005 Château Pontet-Canet

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. I had high expectations for this wine and it came through, exceeding my expectations. Big dark and complex. The attack is nice a brigh, which was a surprise, but it develops brooding deep dark fruit notes on the mid-palate and has an excellent finish.

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  • 2006 Château Léoville Poyferré

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. I was generally unimpressed with both the 05 and 06 of this wine. I thought the 06 showed better than the 05 and should be a better value. The wines were very similar, which either speaks well for the 06 or poorly for the 05.

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  • 2005 Château Léoville Poyferré

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. This was quite similar to the 06, which retails for less than half the price of the 05. Bright and fruit. Maybe this will improve with age, but the 06 is definitely drinking well now. Disappointing finish.

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  • 2006 Château Talbot

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. The 06 of this wine may turn out to be a nice value. The price will need to come down a little bit. Some good complexity, but nothing too special. A fine effort, but the 05 left me a bit disappointed.

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  • 2005 Château Talbot

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. Need to do better at this price point. Very dark. Muted notes that never really developed (keep in mind, this is a bang bang tasting but even so, many other wines were much more expressive). Disappointing finish.

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Flight 2 - Margaux (8 Notes)

  • 2005 Château Brane-Cantenac

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. Huge surprise here. Intoxicating nose, really complex. Very dense and complex. This is an outstanding effort and is right up there with the 05 Troplong and 05 Pontet Canet as "red' WOTN candidates.

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  • 2006 Château Brane-Cantenac

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. I tasted the 06 before the 05 and became so enamored with the 05 that I recall no note from the 06.

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  • 2006 Château Cantenac Brown

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Tasted after the Brane-Cantenac, which stole the "Cantenac show." No note. Average 06 but surprisingly expensive. Not worth the $70+ price tag.

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  • 2005 Château Cantenac Brown

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectatoins. Showed well next to the 05 Brane-Cantenac, which was a candidate for WOTY. Nice complexity and concentration. Should age well. The Brane had a more dynamic nose and a better concentration of fruit, but this was a good effort.

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  • 2006 Château Lascombes

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Nose not as dynamic as the 05. Palate was a slight disappointment, but an enjoyable drinker.

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  • 2005 Château Lascombes

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Complex nose, better than 06. Flavor profile was very similar to the 06, although this had a nicer finish. Probably not worth the 05 price compared with the similar 06.

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  • 2006 Château Malescot St. Exupéry

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Nice nose -- the Margaux noses were excellent on this night. Good 06 and at close to 1/3 the price of the 05. A bit of oak, nice fruit and okay finish.

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  • 2005 Château Malescot St. Exupéry

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Very nice bottle, but pricey. Good structure, nice concentration of fruit. Medium to long finish. In terms of the Margaux, I much preferred the Brane-Cantenac at half the price.

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Flight 3 - Graves/Pessac-Leognan (9 Notes)

  • 2006 Château La Louvière

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. Expectations based on retail price. This is a pleasant drinker but priced too high right now. Should be $25.

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  • 2005 Château La Louvière

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. As with the 06, this is over priced. It is fine, but with all the 05 values on the market, this is a pass. At the listed retail price, it is 2-3x what it should be.

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  • 2005 Château Pape Clément Blanc

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. I enjoyed the Pape Clement Blancs very much but they simply are overpriced. The 05 had a bit more acidity and was more expressive. It was a good wine and what I would expect from this cheateau. At a retail of $250, it is way out of whack.

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  • 2006 Château Pape Clément Blanc

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. As with the 05, the price is completely out of whack and not in line with reality. This is a good white wine, though. A little less acidity than the 05 and it loses the structure on the mid-palate. I expected the Pape Clements to show well but be on the high side, price wise.

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  • 2005 Château Pape Clément

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. The Pape Clements were all good. But the best I can give them is a "met expectations" beause they are priced way too high. This had nice concentration and density with good dark fruit and a good finish.

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  • 2006 Château Pape Clément

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Lighter than the 05, but not substantially so. Good dark fruit profile, with a bit more red fruit up front. As with the other Pape Clements, on the pricey side for what they are.

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  • 2006 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Pleasant, simple if a bit flabby. Not a bad white.

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  • 2006 Château Smith Haut Lafitte

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. Both the 05 and 06 were disappointing. Black pepper and red fruit dominated the nose. Overall, a simple effort but I expected more.

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  • 2005 Château Smith Haut Lafitte

    France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. As with the 06, not a bad effort. Plain and simple, with darker fruit and pepper. But I expected more, especially at the 05 asking price.

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Flight 4 - Pomerol/St. Emilion (19 Notes)

  • 2006 Château Beauregard

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. Both the 05 and 06 were nice surprises. This was fruit and somewhat simple. At this price, it is a very nice every day Pomerol.

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  • 2005 Château Beauregard

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. This had a lot going on. I liked both the 05 and 06 very much. This had "more" of everything I liked about the 06 -- more caramel on the nose, more oak and denser fruit. A nice value, especially for Pomerol, at this price point.

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  • 2006 Château Clinet

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Both the 05 and 06 Clinet are borderline for me -- both could have been "below expectations." The offering price is too high. Especially when compared with the "value" Beauregard, which shared a table. Good fruit, well integrated and a medium finish.

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  • 2005 Château Clinet

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Both the 05 and 06 Clinet are borderline for me -- both could have been "below expectations." The offering price is too high. However, that said, this is a very nice offering. Deep dark fruit with nice complexity and very good finish.

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  • 2006 Château Petit Village

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. There was something slightly off about the 06. Dominating barnyard? Not sure. It was rather simple.

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  • 2005 Château Petit Village

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Nice big round fruit effort with a solid finish. Tasted right after the Angelus and this stood up very well.

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  • 2006 Château Angélus

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Tannic with a nice future. Brighter red fruit with some secondary darker fruit. Nice effort but probably will be overpriced.

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  • 2005 Château Angélus

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Very nice effort. The major differences between this and the 06 is that this has more dense fruit and has a longer finish. The profiles are relatively the same, though, and at the price of the 05, the 06 should be a comparable bargain. The 05 is definitely overpriced for what it is.

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  • 2006 Château Beau-Séjour Bécot

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. I did not love the 06 -- it was good, but after the 05, was a slight disappointment. Fruity nose with a palate of darker fruit and short finish.

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  • 2005 Château Beau-Séjour Bécot

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. Great wine! Cherry cola nose with some jammy dark fruit and a nice smooth finish. There is backbone here for good aging. At this price point, a great 05 value from a "renowned" cheateau.

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  • 2006 Clos Fourtet

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. By the time we reached this table, the 05 was gone. The 06 was good and should be in line with this price point.

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  • 2006 Château La Dominique

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. Very interesting that the 06 of this wine is bigger, bolder and more complex. The pourer recommended tasting the 05 first -- possibly the only wine where the 05 was tried first. Looks to be a very nice value at under $50.

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  • 2005 Château La Dominique

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. While the 06 exceeded expectations, the 05 was watery and insubstantial. The pourer of this wine did state that the 06 is better, in his opinion. More complexity and a bigger nose.

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  • 2006 Château Larcis Ducasse

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Pure red fruit with some secondary blue fruit. A short finish. This is almost 1/10 the price of the 05. The 05 is overpriced -- the 06 is probably right on.

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  • 2005 Château Larcis Ducasse

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. The price here seems Parker driven. I do not see it. Very tannic with a good amount of heat. There was some subtle fruit, but not very complex or dynamic and the finish is average at best. Not a bad wine by any stretch, but I much expected better for an 05 at this price point.

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  • 2006 Château Pavie Macquin

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Met expectations. Both the 05 and 06 were very tannic and hard to assess. The 06 showed a little better with good dense red and blue fruit.

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  • 2005 Château Pavie Macquin

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Below expectations. I had very high expectations and have been looking to buy some at the right price. I'll probably wait a while longer to see if the price comes down further. This is tannic. Sweet kirsch, cherry and red fruit with some secondary blue fruit. Shorter finish than I would have liked. It is not bad but I expected more. The 06 was more impressive in the context of the UGC tasting.

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  • 2006 Château Troplong Mondot

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. Tasted right before the dynamite 05. Very fresh minerals, red and blue fruit with a good finish.

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  • 2005 Château Troplong Mondot

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    At UGC Grand Tasting in New York. Exceeded expectations. WOTN candidate. Huge wine. Spice, blue fruit on the nose and palate. Excellent effort.

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Flight 5 - Barsac/Sauternes (10 Notes)

Closing

At the end of the day, my favorite 3 reds -- the 05 Brane-Cantenac, the 05 Troplong and the 05 Pontet Canet. The Guiraud and Suduiraut were both excellent and it should be interesting to see how the 06s stack up in the long run, because they may be better than the 05s.

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