Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux Tasting of the 2016 Vintage

Metreon San Francisco

Tasted January 25, 2019 by Woodbridge Brad with 204 views

Introduction

I have mixed feeling about this type of tasting, the time to ponder and examine the wines is not really available so it all about first impressions. The vintage impression is there and real winners emerge but the chance of missing a few is also great. The fatigue factor happens even with good discipline. I took a break several times, but my knees give out eventually. In my career I have had many days with 100's of wines to evaluate but I need a chair these days.

Flight 1 - 2016 Blanc (12 notes)

Very nice whites, lovely vintage. Nice to taste SB/Se that don't reek of cat pee. I spent many years making wines like this and I love them. This is a really nice vintage although most of the wines need more bottle aging. For the dollar Ch. de Chantegrive is a clear value.

White
2016 Château de Chantegrive Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves
88 points
Lovely, yeasty and fresh, light to moderate structure, great acid balance, great exit. A wine to drink young as well as with age. This is a wine that will move from blossom to full flower with time. A real value at $18
White
2016 Château Bouscaut Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
88 points
Lovely but subdued and gentle. Lots of nice characters that are at a modest level of expression. Young, a bit pricy but nice.
White
2016 Château Carbonnieux Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
91 points
Lush, big, young wine. Yeasty, varietal, good weight, oak in context great exit, long linger. Takes me back to the start of my winemaking career with RM before the cat pee SB period. Would love to see this in five years. Worth $35
White
2016 Domaine de Chevalier Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
88 points
Clean but definite note of SO2 in the nose. Rather closed because of the SO2 and the barrel character was really the most obvious aroma.Ok balance and exit. This will need a lot of time to come around to perhaps something great if you want to pay the price.
White
2016 Château de Fieuzal Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
86 points
Oak was way to forward and the acidity a bit low, a case of trying too hard. Unexciting for me.
White
2016 Château de France Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
86 points
A touch simple but okay. Pricy
White
2016 Château Larrivet-Haut-Brion Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
88 points
Lovely balance, a very gentle and subdued wine, all the right elements but time is needed here for development.
White
2016 Château La Louvière Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
88 points
Another gentle wine but not as closed as some in this tasting and a bit more expressive. Very nice character.
White
2016 Château Malartic-Lagravière Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
88 points
Lovely character with some more obvious oak, another wine that needs more development time, in the high end of the flight today. Very nice.
1 person found this helpful Comment
White
2016 Château Olivier Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
88 points
Lovely nose of integrated oak and SB, subtle but classic character. Very clean and fresh, just needs more time.
White
2016 Château Pape Clément Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
89 points
Lots of oak and spice, the fruit is lush but nothing is integrated yet so it appears flat and bit awkward, out of balance at this point. That said, it will be wonderful in a year, not that I am going to spend $150 to find out.
White
2016 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
91 points
Best of flight, ignoring price. Spicy, floral, great weight, tons of aging potential. Super wine and wish I could afford it.

Flight 2 (7 notes)

Great selection all were delicious and I felt badly for the producers that did show, stickies are a hard sell and under appreciated these days. Some of the best wines I have seen in years.

White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château Doisy-Daëne France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
94 points
Truly awesome, second best in a wonderful lineup. $40 Classic flavors expertly displayed.
1 person found this helpful Comment
White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château Bastor-Lamontagne France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
88 points
More ripe fruit notes than Botrytis, but a wonderful balance and weight. Very clean and lovely fruit. Around $30
White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château de Fargues France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
98 points
Hits every note of excellent Sauterne except for the price at $180+. Awesome wine best of the tasting by far.
White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château Guiraud France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
90 points
Quite nice, intensity a bit less than some in the flight but quite nice at $40 a real value.
White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château Clos Haut-Peyraguey France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
88 points
Most disjointed wine of the flight, lower acid, hint of the old fashioned aviation fuel nose. Definitely retro but I still liked it, would be great with a blue cheese.
White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
90 points
Slightly lighter weight than most of the flight but what was there was delicious and in great balance.
White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Château Suduiraut France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
92 points
My third place wine of the flight. Very complete Sauterne hitting on all the right notes in an awesome flight. $55

Flight 3 - Rouge Flight Part A (14 notes)

Beychevelle was the standout and Clarke the best value although Talbot was quite good both as value and quality.

Red
2016 Château Clarke France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Listrac-Médoc
90 points
Classic Bordeaux, everything about it is in balance. It was so good that is was hard to spit and move on to the next wine, I just wanted to grab the bottle and get some bread and cheese and enjoy. Very nice and at $44 a value.
Red
2016 Château Fonréaud France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Listrac-Médoc
87 points
Bit more middle of the road Bordeaux, all the right flavors are there but at low key volume. The price at $18 is attractive and appropriate for this wine which does have a real personality versus many industrial Cabernets.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Château Fourcas Hosten France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Listrac-Médoc
86 points
Decent but a tier below the Fonreaud. Okay structure but the flavors are green and modest. Okay but $23 is high for what it is.
Red
2016 Château Maucaillou France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Moulis en Médoc
Might of been a bad bottle but this wine was oxidized with hints of burnt sugar. Winery rep was pouring so I assume that is the way it is. Pass
Red
2016 Château Brane-Cantenac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
93 points
Solid Bordeaux at any price, absolutely lovely. Worth every penny of $75.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Château Rauzan-Gassies France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
86 points
Not all that impressive but not defective. For $45 I would look at something else
Red
2016 Château Beychevelle France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
96 points
Okay at $88 this should be really good and in my opinion it is even more. As mr. Mondavi would say 'an iron fist in a velvet glove", it has tremendous strength of character and power in a nicely restrained presentation. Awesome.
1 person found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
2016 Château Gloria France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
Bitter and unresolved this did show at all well. As this is a wine I see more often I look forward to another tasting at a later date and am not scoring it.
Red
2016 Château Gruaud Larose France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
89 points
Round and intense, good to very good. Not worth $80
Red
2016 Château Lagrange (St. Julien) France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
90 points
Good Bordeaux character and balance but very young and needs time. Quite nice.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Château Langoa Barton France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
91 points
Restrained and austere at this point, but everything is there in the right places. Very good wine for the future. Definitely better that the Leoville Barton
Red
2016 Château Léoville Barton France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
Big chewy unresolved wine. Nice nose but too much tannin for me. No score
1 person found this helpful Comments (3)
Red
2016 Château Léoville Poyferré France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
93 points
Tannic and austere, this is still a lovely wine that needs time. Unlike the Leoville Barton I can see that endpoint in this wine. Time will make this wonderful.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Château Talbot France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
92 points
I have always had a soft spot for this wine. In the 80's it was the wine I used to show Brett in a tasting but it has come a long way since then. This wins my RTD (ready to drink) award for the tasting. Round and classic Bordeaux, voluptuous, time for the meat on the grill.
1 person found this helpful Comment

Flight 4 - Rouge Flight Part B (11 notes)

There were values in Pez and Ormes de Pez but the stars were Lynch Bages and Pichon Longueville

Red
2016 Château d'Armailhac France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
89 points
Rather modest but quite nice. Young Bordeaux, RTD. Looking at the price, pricy.
Red
2016 Château Clerc Milon France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
91 points
At $90+ this is currently a pricy study in tannin and acid. It does have all the right stuff, but it needs 5 plus years at least and I am not sure that will be enough
Red
2016 Château Croizet-Bages France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
90 points
I saw a note about old school BDX and that does describe this wine except no sign of brett. Big, somewhat drinkable now. I liked it, old guy that I am.
Red
2016 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
Moderate color, buttery nose, very, very hard biting tannic edges. I don't agree with the other scores at all this wine is too tannic and very over extracted, based on 45 plus years of experience it will not age out nicely.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Château Lynch-Bages France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
95 points
Star of this flight, warm and fleshy, this has great depth of flavor, ample structural tannins, and excellent balance. Truly nice wish it were more affordable but what the heck, its only money.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Château Cos Labory France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
92 points
Under $40 great value. Classic nose, great structure and lots of potential.
Red
2016 Château Les Ormes de Pez France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
90 points
Classic Bordeaux nose, lovely structure, tons of good structural tannins, lush weight and a good value at $31.
Red
2016 Château de Pez France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
90 points
Another good value ($35)with lots of potential. Lovely classic nose, good structural tannins, great finish. lots of aging potential.
Red
2016 Château Phélan Ségur France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
90 points
Very, very young, but the structure is right, the aromatics promising and the overall impression excellent. $50 is less of a value but it will be very nice in five years.
Red
2016 Château Pichon-Longueville Baron France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
92 points
Dense briar nose round but tannic in the mouth, most of the tannins are structural that will age to but there is a percentage of hard tannins that could diminish the balance as it ages. Still very nice wine.
Red
2016 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
96 points
Fabulous, awesome Bordeaux. Massive yet nearly ready to drink. Best of show.
1 person found this helpful Comment

Closing

Greta tasting, surprised at the producers that did not show up. I did not cover the room but did my best and was rewarded with some nice finds.

© 2003-19 CellarTracker! LLC.

Report a Problem

Close