The Wines of Francois Mitjavile, with Mark Savage MW

Handford Wines, London

Tasted September 20, 2017 by Papies with 399 views

Introduction

Mark Savage MW, a friend and importer of FM's wines (Probably the only one who can pronounce his name too) presented a flight across the production of FM's wines and tried to offer an insight into the man and his philosophy. His own philosophy in wine is actually not far from FM's
( MS: Likes wines with originality, expression, and the fruit needs to deserve the wood. Oak is there to civilize the wine through oxidation and the winemaker needs to try and refine the product not force it in a new direction)

On Mitjavile's philosophy his view was:
His wines have character, not conformist or consensus
Uses very classical methods and makes wine in no unusual way or practice. He is just a very intuitive winemaker, with extremely profound knowledge of his vineyards and is among the winemakers who put the most man hours per vine.

1985 for Mark Savage is the beginning of the "proper" at Tertre Rotoboeuf ad since then the use of oak has increased to 100% that is now.

For us we always assume this is a wine we buy from off vintages and we have had beautiful 97s and 99s. This tasting in a way confirmed it! The new key point for us is how nice his wines taste young.

Flight 1 (9 notes)

Red
2014 Domaine de Cambes France, Bordeaux
88 points
From a not so straight fwd vintage. Fresh and young, bright. Not harsh at all. Dark fruited and the nose here is the highlight and delivers but the palate is not yet there as is very youthful. Light spicy edge too. Good 88-89 wine
Red
2012 Roc de Cambes France, Bordeaux, Côtes de Bourg
90 points
Bright and fresh, young wine but with a very inviting nose, nose that gives even Tertre Rotboeuf a run for its money. A quite welcoming wine even at this young age, very classic and elegant, dark fruits, herby notes with nice peppery touches. The palate doesn't follow to the level of the nose and feels a bit green at times. Andreas 91 / Nicol 89 > 90
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2008 Roc de Cambes France, Bordeaux, Côtes de Bourg
90 points
Muted but very pleasant nose, a touch dusty. Not as open on the nose as the 2012. Has an elegant feel it to, dark fruits with a light herby touch, still quite fresh, bright and lacks the light green feel the 2012 had on the palate. Good length. Solid 90
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2000 Roc de Cambes France, Bordeaux, Côtes de Bourg
90 points
A bit of a difficult wine to rate. On one had it has all the components on the other it lacked a bit of charm and excitement.
Savory wine, well evolved and in secondary phase. Very much still alive of course, smooth and round nice dark fruit edge. A good wine and a solid 90-91 but just lacked a bit of va va voom.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2013 Tertre Rôteboeuf France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
92 points
To Mark Savage 2013 is the worst vintage in 20 years however as it is with all Tertre Roteboeufs they excel in poor vintages and such is the case here. 30% of the usual crop here.
Nice nose, floral, dark fruited and although it has quite a bit of wood still evident with light mocha notes it complements the wine. A touch new-worldy but expected to have that feel given the youth. Young but very drinkable and the tannin is big but round. Opulent and fresh like it should be this will only improve and gain complexity with time. 92 for now. We liked it more than the 2009...
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2009 Tertre Rôteboeuf France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
91 points
Not as charming as the 2013 ( Papies 92 and young)
Richer nose, less herby more fruit , light oaky touches, light mocha feel. The fruit feels heavy at times as if the ripeness of the 2009 vintage was not managed well or is not a t a good stage now at least. Very approachable now and quite pleasant to drink but the heavier fruit does take away from the charming side and felt a bit lacking. We definitely expected more here. 90-92 score range from both of us.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2005 Tertre Rôteboeuf France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
flawed
Medicinal nose, one sniff was enough to call this flawed. Shame.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1997 Tertre Rôteboeuf France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
93 points
Once again Mitjavile excels in off vintages and for us this was the wine of the evening, albeit from a mediocre vintage.
Well evolved, savory, full of charm and elegance. Floral and a touch of a feminine wine. Good ripe fruit in perfect harmony with the wine, herbal touch, very expressive nose. Softer on the palate and every so elegant. 93-94
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1988 Tertre Rôteboeuf France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
92 points
A wine more for history value given this represents one of the first proper/serious wines of FM under TR, 1985 being the first according to Mark Savage.
Well Secondary, savory wine, light herby touches, soft fruit touches, elegant and well aged. Very pleasant wine to enjoy now and we would suggest one does not wait much longer. 92
1 person found this helpful Comment
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