Tasted blind at the Sauternes 2011 horizontal tasting. The Château Doisy-Védrines 2011 has a very fragrant, almost floral bouquet with pure honey, quince and yellow flower scents that soar from the glass and embrace you like your favourite aunt. The palate is medium-bodied with a viscous texture and superb acidity that really set this Sauternes alight: real tension and a sense of energy here. It just “flows” toward a vibrant, honeyed finish that has only just begun to “motor." This surpasses its showing from barrel and constitutes a magnificent effort from Olivier Castèja and his team.
95 Points - Neal Martin
The 2014 Doisy-Vedrines has a tightly knit, backward bouquet that demands much more encouragement than its peers. The palate is well balanced with a viscous texture, extremely well judged acidity, poised with a beautiful quince and marmalade-tinged finish that lingers in the mouth. Superb. Tasted blind at the annual Southwold tasting.
94 Points - Neal Martin
Tasted blind at the Southwold Bordeaux 2010 tasting. The Chapelle d'Ausone 2010 has a tightly coiled bouquet that is very linear and controlled, not as expressive as its peers but with fine mineralite. The palate is tight on the entry with crisp tannins, bright tart cherry fruit and plenty of energy. It builds in the mouth to quite a structured, linear finish that does not forsake breeding and class. If only all second wines were as good as this. Tasted January 2014.
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.
97+ Points - Robert Parker
This wine exhibits beautifully pure notes of creme de cassis, blueberry liqueur, pen ink, graphite and hints of toast and vanillin. The wine is full and rich, and although aged in 80% new oak, the wood is a subtle background component. This beauty will take longer to round into shape than the dramatic and compelling 2009. Forget it for 5-8 years, and drink it over the following three-plus decades.
92-94 Points - Neal Martin "The de Fieuzal Blanc has a lifted, perfumed bouquet with touches of dried orange peel and apricot blossom that are well defined and vigorous, perhaps leaning slightly to the New World (though there is nothing wrong with that.) The palate is well balanced with crisp green fruit, lemongrass and orange zest that builds to a vibrant, satisfying finish. This is a superb white from the estate."
Robert Parker "Possibly the greatest Fieuzal since the legendary 1985, the 2013 boasts a light straw color with a greenish hue as well as a stunning perfume of tangerine oil, orange marmalade, citrus and honeysuckle. Surprisingly full, rich, exuberant and borderline flamboyant, this is a stunning white Graves to consume over the next 20+ years."
96 Points - Robert Parker
An incredibly fresh, lively 2003, this wine offers a dense ruby/purple color along with full body and a remarkable nose of black currants, kirsch, lead pencil shavings and vanilla. Opulent, full-bodied and close to full maturity, it is a seamless classic that will age for 15-20 more years. Kudos to the Delon family for such a brilliant achievement in a tricky vintage.
97 Points - Neal Martin
Tasted blind at the Southwold Bordeaux 2010 tasting. The Leoville Las-Cases 2010 has a very elegant bouquet with earthy, tobacco infused black fruit, fine delineation and well-integrated oak. It is tight at first, but opens nicely in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with a gentle grip on the entry. Very fine tannins, very elegant and harmonious with beautifully judged acidity leading to a classic finish that is totally seductive. Glorious. Tasted January 2014.