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2003 Ch√Ęteau Duhart-Milon Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend
10/30/2014 - brucef wrote:
90 points
Although this has been in my cellar for six years, there was not any sediment in the bottle. This is a modern claret, and is not much like the wines of fifty years ago.
Nose reminiscent of cigar box, but it is not very intense. Tannins fully resolved, some acid backbone, not fruit forward, no heat - doesn't show any effects of a hot year, but alcohol is evident. Medium finish, smooth, but nothing special. Color very deep garnet. no orange or brown. This bottle was opened two hours before dinner and was decanted with aerating, but that was unnecessary. I'm pretty much resigned to not finding any French clarets that are made the way they were made fifty years ago and produce such enjoyment. You had to decant a ten year old bottle from any halfway decent vintage because there would be a half inch of sediment in the bottle. And the nose and mouthfeel are practically gone. I still remember wines from '62 and '66 that had a nose that you could continue to enjoy after your glass was drained. When you opened the bottle, even a third growth's bouquet would be evident immediately. But, for such a decent vintage and chateaux, this was a disappointment. If you like the modern style bordeaux you may like this. I know why my son does not hold bordeaux in high regard. In my mind this bottle was worth maybe $15, definitely not $75.
  • brucef commented:

    10/31/14, 6:42 AM - Thanks, PT, for your insight, and confirming my notes. Unfortunately anything older than '96 is gone from my cellar, and anything from '90 or earlier is hard to find and not worth several hundred dollars. Beycheville, Giscours, Citran, Pierue Lichine, and Lascombes used to be the wines I would go to and Cheval Blanc, or a Leovilles for a special occasion. I remember when a first growth was $50. (Of course, then you could have a very nice dinner out for 2 with wine for under $20.) Lately I've had more enjoyment from a Four Vines OVC Zin than this bottle. I don't know how they are getting the current prices for Bordeaux - if the under 45 yo group had tasted even one mature bottle from '61 to '82, they would be looking elsewhere for fine wines, and not paying insane prices for mediocre wine. I have come to realize that most bordeaux vintners take too much tannin out of the wine; what used to make these wines so enjoyable, but only after at least ten years. So a $20 bottle is drinkable after three or four years, but it will always be bland.

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