The Château Tour de Sarrail 2009 has a beautifully defined nose of blackberry, minerals and well integrated oak but it needs patience to unite in the glass. Medium-bodied, contained, focused, with well-integrated if prominent new oak towards its long finish.
Château Palmer’s second wine, Alter Ego de Palmer is available @ £575.00 IB per case or £287.50 IB per case of six.
Representing nearly half of the production, this estate’s second wine, the 2009 La Chapelle d’Ausone, is an extraordinary effort.
The fact that this second wine is so remarkable tells readers just how stupendous the grand vin must be. The dense purple-hued 2010 Chapelle d’Ausone offers a perfumed nose of blue, red and black fruits, licorice, incense and crushed rocks. Deep, full-bodied, round and generous, this wine will offer magnificent drinking over the next 20-25+ years.
The Chapelle d’Ausone has an intense bouquet with vibrant, slightly dusty black fruit that are very well defined and develop intriguing earthy, almost graphite aromas with aeration. Leaving it in my glass over five minute it offers some gorgeous, yet subtle floral notes. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannins and a degree of composure and refinement. One feels that they could have easily tried to extract more from this wine but resisted temptation and consequently produced a better wine. Everything in its right place.
There seems to be just a little Cabernet in this wine, wonderful lift and sense of clarity, airy even, dark cherries, boysenberry and an odd scent of lime cordial that vanishes after five minutes in the glass. The palate is citrus-fresh on the entry, very pretty and feminine with filigree tannins and touches of fresh apricot and white peach interlacing the cassis and dark cherry fruit towards the finish.
Possibly the “wine of the vintage,” the 2008 boasts an inky/blue/purple color as well as a glorious perfume of spring flowers, blueberry and blackberry liqueur, camphor, truffles and crushed rocks. With great fruit on the attack and mid-palate, a medium to full-bodied, multidimensional mouthfeel and a skyscraper-like finish, this prodigious effort over-delivers, even for this phenomenal terroir. Give it 5-8 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 40-50 years.
The Ex-Château Balestard La Tonnelle has shed some of its early power and tannins to reveal wonderful purity of fruit. Medium-bodied, fresh, elegant and multidimensional. The ’86 is a stunner and now approaching its plateau of full maturity.
Made from tiny yields of 18 hectoliters per hectare, the opaque purple-colored 2009 reveals an extraordinary nose of mulberries, black cherries, charcoal, barbecue smoke and forest floor. Rich, full-bodied and opulent with silky tannins as well as a broad, unctuous texture, this beauty can be enjoyed now and over the next 15+ years. It is fashioned from a blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc.