Haut Medoc Birthday lunch

Bel & Brio, Barangaroo

Tasted December 15, 2018 by chatters with 127 views

Introduction

Last celebration for my birthday. Mats and his son came over from Sweden as well (not just for this but to tour around and see the countryside) which was rather nice. This time a little change of format with 5 brackets of wines focusing on the Haut Medoc looking at horizontal and vertical brackets. Basically I got to run a little education session which was fun for me.

Flight 1 - Bracket one - Chateau Lanessan (6 notes)

The idea of this bracket was to see the evolution of a Haut Medoc (from mostly critically acclaimed vintages) over a considerable length of time. Served with Burrata (50g Burrata cheese / zucchini escapece / mint / toasted pine nuts / aged balsamic from Modena)

Red
1998 Château Lanessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Cherry, a little Kirsch, pretty, sweet spice, a little leather. Juicy, a little volatility; quite sharp in fact, muted cherry. Slightly chalky with medium minus intensity tannins. Hmm.
Red
2000 Château Lanessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Bit funky, dirty, leathery, earthy, farmyard, a little black hued fruit. Juicy, blackcurrant, plums, a little alcohol heat. Front of mouth grip and a little burr on the mid palate. Hmm.
Red
2005 Château Lanessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Blackcurrant, leather, a little vanilla, sweet spice, plums, earthy, earthy. Juicy, fleshy, black hued fruit, tight, drying tannins, a little alcohol warmth and spice. In a good spot.
Red
2009 Château Lanessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Plums, sweet spice, blackcurrant, vanilla, caramel, very primary still. Juicy, very spicy, alcohol heat, drying but integrated tannins. Quite plummy on the palate as well. Hmm
Red
2010 Château Lanessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Quite muted initially but with vigorous agitation it shows meaty black currant and sweet spice. Juicy, still has plenty of tight tannins, blackcurrant, plums, long, spiced. Superb.
Red
2015 Château Lanessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Jubey blackcurrant jam, plus, berries, muted sweet spice. Juicy, jubey, tightly silky tannins, black fruits, long, good but young.
3 people found this helpful Comment

Flight 2 - Bracket two - Chateau Senejac (6 notes)

For this one I wanted to show my mates how vintage variation impacts in a marginal climate so it was a far more compressed timeline for the vintages. Served with Beef Tartare (black Angus Beef fillet Tartare / parmesan crust / Italian black truffle)

Red
2009 Château Sénéjac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Blackcurrant, cassis, black cherry, sweet spice. Juicy, blackcurrant, cassis, a little cream, cedar, tight but integrated tannins, generous, yum.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2010 Château Sénéjac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Muted, slightly savoury, blackcurrant, black cherry, earthy, slightly leathery, slight pyrazine. Dense, savoury, very juicy but closed with slight spice, plenty of tight, drying tannins. Loads of time for me.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2012 Château Sénéjac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Biscuit, toast, blackcurrant, plum, sweet spice. Juicy, toasty, coffee, muted black fruits, tight, drying talc textured tannins. Long.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2013 Château Sénéjac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Wet…with agitation it's quite delicate and almost ethereal compared to the previous three wines in the bracket. With time it shows some slightly jubey blackcurrant and cherry. Its wet on the palate as well, the fruit a little unripe, the tannins a little course, but this is pleasant enough considering the vintage.
Red
2014 Château Sénéjac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Slightly muted and closed. With agitation plenty oak, savoury, slightly meaty black hued fruit with a slight jubey note. In the mouth it's juicy, fleshy, black fruits, silky tannins, and a little savoury underpin. Nice.
1 person found this helpful Comments (2)
Red
2015 Château Sénéjac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Young, closed, a little plan chocolate, juicy black currant, pretty almost confected fruit. Young and a little disjoined on the palate. Savour, tannins are drying, perhaps a little too young for me. Time and plenty of it.
3 people found this helpful Comment

Flight 3 - Bracket three - 1996 (6 notes)

the first blind bracket was to see if everyone could pick the Australian of the Bordeaux. Rather impressively everyone nailed it. Served with Tagliatelle (wild boar ragu / porcini mushrooms / montasio cheese / chestnuts / crispy herbs)

Red
1996 Bowen Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Australia, South Australia, Limestone Coast, Coonawarra
Pyrazine, unripe blackcurrant, leather, sweet spice, tomato. Juicy, with flavours of unripe black currant, tomato, tomato leaf, quite green and sharp with grippy tannins and a little alcohol warmth. Meh
Red
1996 Château La Lagune France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Blackberry, blackcurrant, perfumed spice, a little liquorice and earthy wetness, a little tomato leaf. Juicy on the palate with black fruits, sweet spice, plenty of front of mouth grip, rather pleasant.
Red
1996 Château Haut-Marbuzet France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
Wet, black over red currant, sweet spice, slightly gamey. A little damp cellar on the palate and a little volatility, juicy, tight, slightly gritty tannins…these 'negative' attributes do not detract from an overarching freshness and balance. Good.
Red
1996 Lindeman's Cabernet Sauvignon St. George Australia, South Australia, Limestone Coast, Coonawarra
Polished oak; caramel, vanilla, blackberry and currant fruit. Earthy leathery, sweet spice. Thick, dense and a little alcohol n the palate, plenty of oak juicy, similarly focussed fruit. Nice.
Red
1996 Château Patache d'Aux Médoc France, Bordeaux, Médoc
Coffee, biscuit, blackcurrant, earthy spice, leather,. Juicy to the point of sourness more red currant with lashings of tannins that are chalky and drying. Hmm.
Red
1996 Tahbilk Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Australia, Victoria, Central Victoria, Nagambie Lakes
flawed
Corked over blackcurrant and leather. Bah. FLAW.

Flight 4 - Bracket four - 2000 (6 notes)

Second blind bracket - this time it was to pit the Haut Medoc against classed growth wines. I tried to pick wines that were close to the classed growth villages in question and threw in the Sociando Mallet as a curve ball. Pity the Cos Labory was corked. This was far more divided with both the Cissac and Citran showing well though, as they say, class will out. Served with Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder (Sweet potato puree / balsamic baby onions / demi glace sauce /crispy sage)

Red
2000 Château Rauzan-Gassies France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
Leather, blackcurrant, earthy, plumy, spicy, a little biscuit and spice. Juicy, savoury, graphite, black fruits, a little volatile acidity. Tannins near resolved. Medium plus length. Nice.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2000 Château Citran France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Medium minus intensity aromas of blackberry, earthy, leathery, muted nose…juicy - the acid is fresh and rather lovely - muted black fruit, long, slightly grippy, burr edged tannins, slight alcohol warmth. Long. Nice.
Red
2000 Château Cissac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Blackcurrant, leather, cassis, sweet spice a little wet smelling. Juicy, a little toast on the palate, dense, drying, grippy, chalky textured tannins. Good.
Red
2000 Château Lynch-Bages France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
Blackcurrant, cassis, sweet spice but a little funky, farmyard underpin then cream and vanilla. Juicy, tight tannins, lovely, silky but drying tannins, fruit is arguably little muted but this is balanced. Yum.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2000 Château Cos Labory France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
flawed
slightly corked. Leather, earthy, muted, slightly sharp, black fruits. Massive tannins, cherry, crushed rock, black fruits more brambles than blackcurrant. Pity about that taint which grows in the glass, sucking the enjoyment from what could have been a lovely wine, I'm sure. FLAW.
Red
2000 Château Sociando-Mallet France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Pyrazine, blackcurrant, crushed rock, spice, earthy, leathery. Juicy, savoury, grippy, leathery tannins, wetly fresh. Black hued fruit tends to the green but not too bad. Kind of lovely in a traditional claret kind of way. For me it's not really reflective of what I expect from the vintage though.
2 people found this helpful Comment

Flight 5 - Bracket five - 2009 (6 notes)

Last bracket was just to look at a group of 2009 Haut Medoc (with a single ring in) to see how the Bordelais wine makers handled a more 'new world' vintage. Served with 12h slow cooked Beef Ribs (short beef ribs / Whisky and dark chocolate jus / Radicchio in agrodolce /almonds sliced)

Red
2009 Château Liversan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Wild blackcurrant, cedar, pyrazine, a little shitty note, wet, savoury, graphite. Good.
Red
2009 Château Bernadotte France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Medium plus intensity aromas of cedar, blackcurrant, fresh. With agitation the fruit comes up even more. Juicy, blackcurrant, spiced, grippy tannins, quite a liquorice joining on the palate..
Red
2009 Château La Tour de Bessan France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
Biscuit, a little cardboard, baked earth, black fruit and plum, jubey, cream. Tightly tannic, juicy, fruit a little muted on the palate. Nice.
Red
2009 Château Belle-Vue (Haut-Médoc) France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Plums, cream, ripe blackcurrant, spice, a little alcohol warmth and, oddly, pyrazine. On the palate, it's big, bold with alcohol warmth, flour textured tannic grip, medium plus length. Hmm.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2009 Château La Tour Carnet France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
Ripe blackcurrant, chocolate, cream, sweet spice, a little alcohol ferment note and a smidge of rhubarb (?) Juicy, tightly tannic, still very much a puppy on the palate.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2009 Château La Tour de Mons France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
Plums, spice, biscuit, earthy, feels like it's merlot dominant though I'm sure it isn't, with plenty of alcohol and chocolate. In the mouth it's alcohol, plums, spice, grippy tannins. Bit overblown. Hmm

Closing

Phew! Well, It was a lot of fun but, despite spit buckets, it got a bit messy. If I did it again I'd probably restrict it to 4 brackets but it was splendid. We ended up finishing up the dregs with a selection of cheeses and then I rather foolishly went out with Mats & his son for a couple of cleansing ales and a quick whisky...which proved unwise the following morning...

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