A VERY FINE VINTAGE INDEED - SAVED BY FINE WEATHER IN SEPTEMBER AND OCTOBER
Vine bud, new vintage on its way, Haut Brion in March 2009
2008 started during the first two months reasonably quiet with temperatures, rainfall and sunshine days less normal than average year. March was rainful and not that sunny. In beginning of April, frost affected Sauternes & Barsac district, which resulted in losing 50-60% potential grapes for several properties in Barsac.
The overcast and rainful weather resulted in uneven flowering and mildew was present several places. July raised the hopes with sunny and dry weather, but mood barometre at winegrowers fell considerably down, during the rather cold and overcat weather. September gave a lot of sunshine and almost no rain. October was a mixed bag in the beginning of the month, but sunshine came back soon after.
Harvest 2008 was very, very long, due to uneven ripeness in the vineyards. Some winegrowers finished their Cabernets in the end of October. Outbreaks of rain didn't really affected vines that much, since their vegetation cyclus was finished and therefore the roots didn't take water in. It was the so-called phenolic ripeness of the skins which was very important.
Cold nights and dry weather resulted in slow ripening and preserving aromas. Mother Nature compensated somewhat for lack of sunshine during some period of 2008 and you can say September and October turned the looming catastrophe into a much needed success.
Yields are generally low in 2008, due to drastic selection in the vineyards.
White dry Bordeaux did extremely well in 2008 and is almost as thrilling as vintage 2007, considered as exceptional one. 2008's force is the incredibly seductive aromatic touch and fruitness. White sweet Bordeaux did also challenge 2007 vintage - maybe not as concentrated but extremely elegant.
Red 2008 is particulary successful on the right Bank and Pessac-Leognan. Left Bank has its ups and downs, but it seems Pauillac was the most successful district there.
There are 256 wines rated - among several wines, Calon Segur, Cos d'Estournel, L'Eglise Clinet, La Fleur Petrus, Latour-a-Pomerol, Leoville Las Cases, Pichon Baron, Petrus and Trotanoy were not tasted. Barrel samples concerning wines from Listrac and Moulis were far too old at the time of tasting and therefore not reviewed here. At the same occasion barrel samples from Margaux commune were also found too old, but were all retasted two days later at Marquis de Terme, with much better performance for many Margaux wines.
SAUTERNES & BARSAC
d'Yquem was deep and intense on the nose with pear and apricots, velvety, very sophisticated, with excellent structure and greath length. Finished with acacia honey. Awesome stuff. 96-98p.
Climens offered a fabulous showing of breathtaking elegance, purity and wonderful balance. 95-97p.
Doisy-Daëne was very powerful on the nose with many botrytised aromas of apricot, peach and pear, showed great depth, balance and length. Grapes destined for luxury cuvée Extravagant went in here because of minisculous quantity due to frost and raised the quality considerably. Excellent wine. 94-95p.
Suduiraut showed big shoulders, big concentration, splendid acidity and corresponding fruit with flavours of mango and apricot. Extremely well-made wine. 93-95p.
Nairac was very grapefruity on the nose, intense deep, with fine acidity and structure, botrytised flavours of honey melon and apricot. Long on the palate with graceful aftertaste. Very precise and thoughtful winemaking. Terrific effort. 92-95p.
Raymond Lafon showed an elegant and sophisticated side of itself with acidity matching fruit sweetness perfectly. This was a wine with lovely structure and great style. 92-95p. De Fargues was just as impressive. 92-95p.
Clos Haut Peyraguey, Coutet and La Tour Blanche followed closely after, with delightful sweetness and acidity, peach and pear and dried apricots. Long and smooth finish. 92-94p.
Guiraud was close to above mentioned wines (Clos Haut Peyraguey....) with less intensity and depth. Terrific quality here too. 92-93p.
Lafaurie Peyraguey showed spicy flavours, oak, power and strong backbone and long aftertaste. One to watch in the future. 90-93p.
D'Arche, Caillou and Doisy Vedrines gave fine performance with pretty fine intensity of flavours, fine interplay between acidity and fruit. Well-made wines. 89p.
Rieussec was somewhat closed and showed only some moments of its fine quality. I bet however it will vastly improve when in bottle. 88-92p?
Rabaud Promis, Sigalas Rabaud and Suau performed really nice with seductive, fruity, elegant and well - balanced wines. 88p.
OK wines: Filhot, Myrat and Rayne Vigneau (all 87p), de Malle (86-90? Old sample?), Bastor Lamontagne, Broustet, Lamothe Guignard and Romer du Hayot (all 86p) and Lamothe (85p).
Haut Brion - 35% of the harvest into Grand Vin, 41% Merlot + 50% Cabernet Sauvignon + 9% Cabernet Franc. Strong, lots of dark cheries on nose and palate, very deep, very long, mineral, velvety and with astonishing balance. Wonderful effort. 96-97p.
La Mission Haut Brion - 40% of the harvest into Grand Vin, 43% Merlot + 51% Cabernet Sauvignon + 6% Cabernet Franc. Velvety all over, silky fruit and tannins, extremely elegant and sophisticated, fabulous balance. Exceptional wine. 95-96p.
Domaine de Chevalier - harvest finished on the 25th October(!!), 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot and 7% Petit Verdot, Petit Verdot was ripe before Cabernet Sauvignon (!!). Intense and aromatic on the nose with black cherries and blackcurrants, splendid depth and length, smooth aftertaste. Terrific effort for the vintage. 91-93p.
Haut Bergey was strong and fleshy, packed with blackcurrants and cherries, with fine depth and structure, ripe fruit and ripe tannins. Splendid effort. 90-93p.
Carbonnieux and La Louviere were big, strong and powerful, with ripe black fruit, deep and well-structured. Terrific wines. 90-92p.
Pape Clement and Smith Haut Lafitte made an oaky and meaty wine, and had enough of ripe, aromatic and fresh red-/blackcurrants to balance tannins. Clearly fine efforts for the vintage. 90-92p.
Le Clarence de Haut Brion was round, nicely balanced, soft texture, sweet cherry fruit and splendid structure. 90p.
Larrivet Haut Brion had fine intensity and concentration, silky fruit and tannins, splendid balance, fine length and finish. 89-91p.
La Chapelle de La Mission Haut Brion was mineral, earthy, with good tannin grip and fine balance. 89-90p.
La Tour Martillac reminded a lot of Larrivet Haut Brion, but was a tad lighter. 89-90p.
Malartic Lagraviere and Haut Bailly were fleshy, medium body, fine fruit and tannins, fine structure and length. Very nice effort for both. 89p.
Les Carmes Haut Brion, Chantegrive, Cruzeau, de France, Olivier and Picque Caillou were elegant wines, round, with nice fruit intensity and harmonious. 88p.
OK wines: Ferrande 86p. Bouscaut and Couhins Lurton 86-87p. De Fieuzal and Clos Marsalette 87p.
Dry white wines:
Haut Brion blanc - 41% of the harvest into Grand Vin, 55% Semillon + 45% Sauvignon Blanc. Intense aromas of pear, pineapple and acacia flower, formidably knitted together, impeccable balance and long, caressingly soft aftertaste. Fantastic stuff. 96-97p.
Laville Haut Brion - 44% of the harvest into Grand Vin, 79% Semillon + 21% Sauvignon Blanc. Great intensity of lemon, mango and apricot flavours supported by great acidity and balance. Awesome wine. 95-96p.
Domaine de Chevalier -bharvest finished on 3rd October (!!), small yield of 27 hl/ha, 3-4 selections in the vineyard, 75% Sauvignon Blanc + 25% Semillon. Very open, incredibly aromatic with lemon and pineapple, incredibly attractive, tasty and smooth, caressing aftertaste. This was magnificent showing! 95-96p.
Pape Clement and Smith Haut Lafitte were a bit subdued on the nose, oaky, but palate was singing well. Dense, well-knitted wines with fine acidity and strong finish. 91-93p.
Haut Bergey, La Louviere and La Tour Martillac were slightly below Pape Clement and Smith Haut Lafitte. 90-93p.
Cruzeau, Couhins Lurton and Malartic Lagraviere showed fine, ripe fruit, fine aromas of acacia flower, pear and pineapple, fine concentration on the palate, balance and smooth aftertaste. Splendid effort. 90-92p.
Carbonnieux showed fine acidity, intensity and structure. Nicely put together and fine balance. Apple, pineapple and pear. Very fine effort. 90-91p.
de Fieuzal, de France and Olivier were aromatic, charming, nice acidity, a bit light on the toes. Smooth and round finish. Nice wines. 89p.
Chantegrive Cuvée Caroline and Picque Caillou offered aromatic nose, very nice acidity, elegance and finesse, apples, pear and acacia flower. Very nice wines indeed. 88p.
OK wine: Ferrande 87p.
OK wine: Greysac. 86p.
Cantemerle, Coufran and La Tour Carnet impressed a lot. All three very fruity (dark berries) on the nose, ripe grapes, seductive and charming, intense, delightfully balanced. Splendid length and gracious aftertaste. Heartbreaker wines. Terrific effort for the vintage. 88-89p.
Belgrave and Citran had ripe fruit on the nose, were attractive and charming, very nice structure on the palate, fruity with cherries, well-balanced and smooth aftertaste. Fine effort for the vintage. 87-88p.
OK wines: Camensac and Lamarque (86-87p) and Beaumont (86p).
Margaux is always gracious, always stylish, always extremely elegant and sophisticated. In 2008, this wine had velvety structure and velvety tannins. Simply awesome wine. 95-96p.
Palmer had very seductive aroma of dark cherries, great intensity, silky tannins and graceful finish. Very stylish and sophisticated wine with extreme elegance. 94-95p.
Pavillon Rouge contained whole 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and impressed a lot. Ripe, smooth, great balance, catchy fruit sweetness and delightful soft finish. 90-92p.
Malescot St.Euxpery offered strong and powerful wine with ripe dark cherries, well-knitted, harmonious and with firm aftertaste. Splendid effort for the vintage. 89-91p.
Alter Ego was subtle, elegant, with ripe berries and ripe tannin, round and smooth on the aftertaste. 89-90p.
Giscours showed fine intensity of black fruit with fresh flavours, silky tannins, splendid depth and length, fine balance and firm finish. Splendid wine for the vintage, 88-90p. Alter Ego was of same quality, subtle and elegant. 88p.
Kirwan was a tad lighter than Giscours and more elegant. Splendid effort here too. 88-89p.
Dauzac, Desmirail, Ferriere, Labegorce, Marquis de Terme, Monbrison, Marquis de Terme and Rauzan Segla offered silky dark fruit, elegance, fine concentration, charm and fine balance. 88p.
D'Angludet, Bellevue de Tayac, Brane Cantenac, Cantenac Brown, Lascombes (disappointing!) and Rauzan Gassies were all delicate and round wines, but on the light side and a tad too short on the palate. 87p.
OK wine: Boyd Cantenac. 86p.
Leoville Barton had ripe intense fruit on the nose, great depth and classy. Finesse, elegance and strong structure. Big quantities of ripe cherries perfectly matched by ripe smooth tannins. Long aftertaste. Excellent effort fot the vintage. 93-95p.
Leoville Poyferre was extremely well-made, all in black wild cherries. Elegant, sophisticated and gracefully balanced. Gracious aftertaste. Almost up to Leoville Barton in terms of quality. Fabulous wine. 93-94p
Langoa Barton offered nice deep nose of dark fruit, fine structure and length, nice aftertaste and depth. Splendid effort for the vintage. 91-93p.
Beychevelle and Branaire were on the light side but extremely elegant with a lot of charm and finesse. Feminin wines which will offer a lot pleasure. 89-90p.
Gruaud Larose, Lagrange, St. Pierre and Talbot were dark, intense on the nose with black berries, a good bite on the palate with nice fruit, smooth and nice aftertaste. Very nice wines. 88p.
Lafite offered great intensity of aromas and flavors, silky tannins, robust structure, excellent balance and depth. Among best wines of the vintage. 95-96p.
Latour was silky in fruit and tannins with exquisite balance. Very complex, very deep, very seductive with long finish. 94-96p.
Mouton Rothschild had the same goodies as Latour, but seemed a bit lighter. 94-95p.
Pontet Canet was a real stuff! Extremely aromatic and intense with black sweet cherries, strong structure, excellent balance and stunning length. Sophisticated and nuanced. Excellent effort. 94-95p.
Pichon Comtesse had elegant, silky fruit, sappy and fleshy, very nice length and aftertaste. Charming and aromatic on the nose. Splendid effort. 91-93p
d'Armailhac, Haut Bages Liberal and Lynch Bages were very charming on the nose with sweet ripe fruit, deep and intense, a lot of goodies on the palate, silky and gracious finish. Totally seductive wines and splendid effort. 90-91p.
Batailley and Croizet Bages (!) were with plenty of ripe fruit, round, perfumed and seductive. Splendid dark berry intensity and concentration and firm aftertaste. I liked them both! 89-90p. Carruaders de Lafite, Les Forts de Latour and Petit Mouton offered strong, well-knitted wines with fine grip on the palate, fine concentration of red-/blackcurrants and fine firm finish. 89-90p.
Clerc Milon and Grand Puy Ducasse did almost as well as Batailley and Croizet Bages. Well-made wines.88-89p
Lynch Moussas showed nice intensity and concentration of dark fruit, tight and fine structure. Very nice balance and firm finish. 88p.
Duhart Milon was tannic and not willing to "speak", but there was promises of rounder and more charming shape very soon. 87p. Pauillac de Chateau Latour offered good concentration, good grip, nice balance and smooth aftertaste. Not bad at all for 3rd wine. 87p.
Montrose had silky fruit and tannin, strong backbone, great depth and length, splendid balance and firm aftertaste.Terrific effort for the vintage. 92-94p
Dame de Montrose was impressive for a second wine to be. Strong, quite tannic and good grip. 88-90p.
Ormes de Pez offered sweet, silky fruit, very nice intensity, length and structure, nice depth and balance. Heartbreaker wine and splendid effort. 88p. Phelan Segur and Tronquoy Lalande broke several wine hearts too with tasty, harmonious and seductive wines. 88p.
Cos Labory and Lafon Rochet offered sappy, nice dark fruit, nice intensity and structure, round and charming attitude. 87p.
Ausone had plenty of dark fruit /blackberries/blueberries), silky tannins, was fleshy, very sophisticated, mega long on the palate and with perfect balance. Simply exceptional. 96-97p.
Cheval Blanc doesn't normally make me overly impressed during primeur tasting. However, it was different when tasting barrel sample of 2008 and I believe reason is the perfect maturity for Cabernet Franc in this vintage. There were plenty of perfectly ripe fruit, silky ripe tannins, pure elegance, finesse and sophisticated touch, all combined with excellent balance and long smooth finish. Simply exceptional. 96-97p.
Pavie was strong and sappy like a bear with impeccable depth, balance and aftertaste. Lots of ripe fruit and ripe tannin backed up by strong backbone and excellent structure. For once, Pavie in 2008 doesn't look overextracted and modern - it looks like true St. Emilion wine. 95-96p.
Tertre Roteboeuf did it once again! Magnifique wine, sensual, full of dark fruit like blueberries, blackberries and black cherries. Opulent, sophisticated, excellent depth and excellent balance. Smooth like honey on the aftertaste. 94-96p.
Bellevue Mondotte and Pavie Decesse had strong backbone and intensity, plenty of sweet ripe berries with fine support of oak, great length and depth, terrific balance and pretty long aftertaste. Stunning wines. 94-95p.
La Mondotte was very concentrated, velvety, wonderfully balanced and with great length. Simply excellent. 94-95p. Pavie Macquin and Valandraud were both incredibly aromatic with great intensity and depth, big and strongly structured on the palate, and with perfect balance. Excellent effort both of them. 94-95p.
La Confession had very strong backbone, concentration, fatnes, opulence, depth and length on the palate. Awesome balance and long firm aftertaste. Another hit from highly talented Jean-Philippe Janoueix. 93-95p.
Angelus was quite extracted, oaky and strong with sweet fruit and long aftertaste. Modern style. 92p.
Monbousquet had great nose and palate full of ripe black berries and wild cherries, terrific depth, structure and length. Stupendous wine. 91-93p.
Grand Mayne was very close to Monbousquet in terms of quality. 91-92p.
Clos Fourtet and Figeac were fine, seductive and aromatic on the nose with great intensity and depth. Ripe fruit well supported by ripe tannins. Quite long aftertaste. 90-93p.
Canon-La-Gaffeliere and Larcis Ducasse reminded a lot of Clos Fourtet and Figeac, but showed less concentration and intensity. Splendid wines. 90-92p.
Troplong Mondot was strong and concentrated, but also very oaky and therefore very difficult to assess. 90-92p?
Beau-Séjour Becot, Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse, Canon, Dassault, Fleur Cardinale, Franc Mayne, La Gaffeliere, Lynsolence and Magrez Fombrauge were meaty and fleshy wines with significant aroma of black cherries, splendidly balanced and well-structured. Smmoth aftertaste. Well-deserved 90-91p for all of these wines.
Trottevieille provided very smoky fruit aromas ripe wild cherries, fine balance and fine length on the palate. Terrific. 90-91p.
Belair- Monange, Magdelaine and Virginie de Valandraud showed sweet fruit, roundness, elegance and splendid structure. 90p.
Grand Corbin Despagne was aromatic, chewy and with strong structure. 89-91p.
Barde Haut, Chapelle de Ausone, Clos Badon Thunevin, Clos de Baies, Destieux, Faugéres Cuvée Péby, Larmande, Moulin St. Georges and Le Petit Cheval. Well-made wines with splendid ripe fruit and splendid balance. 89-90p.
La Tour du Pin (same owner as Cheval Blanc) had nice silky fruit and tannins, round, lovely structure and balance. 89p.
Cap de Mourlin, Clos de L'Oratoire, La Dominique, Fonbel, Ferrand Lartique - same style like La Tour du Pin. 88-89p.
Balestard La Tonnelle, Faugeres, Fombrauge, Haut Simard, La Gomerie, Quinault L'Enclos, Sansonnet - well-made round wines. 88p.
Berliquet and La Couspade - nice quality. 87-88p.
OK wines: Simard. 87p. Bellevue. 86p.
Le Pin showed very fresh and silky texture, great finesse, sophisticated touch and stunning length. Incredibly exciting wine. 95-96p.
Le Gay was a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc. Explosion of blueberry/blackberry fruit, sophisticated, long and velvety. Every inch as stunning as vintage 2005 and probably even better. 95p.
VCC had unmistakable aroma of violets and dark berries on the nose, intense, splendidly constructed, elegant, long aftertaste. Awesome wine. 95p. Final blend will probably be 70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon.
Lafleur offered ripe and silky tannins, exquisite balance and sophisticated touch, richness and very long aftertaste. Simply excellent. 94-95p.
La Croix St.Georges was broad-shouldered, massive, lot of black cherries, great depth and long firm aftertaste. 93-95p.
La Conseillante appeared velvety and aromatic all over, pure elegance and sophisticated touch so typical for this property, long and graceful finish. A delight. 93-94p.
La Violette was 100% Merlot and there only will be 900 bottles available for sale. Blueberries and blackberries, clear aroma of truffles (crasse de fer - iron dirt), deep and very long on the palate with silky aftertaste. 93-94p.
Clos L'Eglise offered chewy stuff in modern style, lot of ripe fruit and tannin in splendid harmony and form finish. Terrific wine for the vintage. 93p.
Bon Pasteur was full-bodied with strong backbone, meaty, ripe fruit and tannin everywhere, splendid balance, structure and firm finish. 90-92p. La Clemence and Gazin were as splendid but more refined, more elegant and with graceful aftertaste. 90-92p.
Bourgneuf Vayron appeared strong, chewy, ripe and with fine tannins. Dark cherries, long ans strongly structured. Terrific effort for the vintage. 90-91p. Certan de May showed violets, freshness, wild cherries aromas, more elegance than Bourgneuf Vayron. Promising future. 90-91p
Clinet offered meaty texture, silky fruit, fine aromas of black cherries, fine balance, structure and smooth aftertaste. 89-90p.
Pensées de Lafleur was concentrated with very nice length and structure, powerful and firm finish. Very fine for a second wine. 89-90p.
Montviel showed very well for its status. Very intense on the nose, tight, aromatic, dark berries, nice velvety finish. 88-89p.
Duo de Conseillante performed with aplomb for a second wine with cherry aromas, fine structure and fine finish. 88p.
La Cabanne, La Croix de Gay, La Fleur de Gay, La Pointe and Vieux Maillet were all round, harmonious wines with good intensity and good length on the palate. 87-88p.
Beau Soleil, La Croix, Domaine Fayat-Thunevin and Feytit Clinet had fruity attitude, some silkiness, round and pleasant texture, and reasonable finish. 87p.
Better luck next time: Beauregard (85-86p) and Petit Village (85p).
BORDEAUX/BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR/PREMIÈRES CÔTES DE BORDEAUX
20 Mille from in form winemaker Jean-Philippe Janouiex (La Confession) is 100% Merlot wine. Meaty wine, splendidly aromatic with fine tannins, splendid balance and long aftertaste. 89p.
La Croix Mouton and Le Conseillier showed very well with strong backbone, fresh cherry flavors, silky fruit, ripe tannins and fine length. 88p.
Bad Boy made by Jean-Luc Thunevin was chewy, aromatic with blueberries ans blackberries, tasty wine, harmonious and round. 88p.
Reignac impressed like Bad Boy. 88p.
Pavillon Blanc de Margaux was stunningly impressive. Very intense flavors of acacia flower, citrus and mango, great acidity, formidable structure and long finish. 93-95p.
Grand Village white made by Sylvie and Jacques Guinaudeau (Lafleur) was splendid wine with intense acacia flower flavors, fresh acidity and lovely balance. 88-89p.
CÔTES DE BOURG
Roc de Cambes was very powerful, strong, very intense on the nose with blueberries and black cherries, with splendid balance and firm aftertaste containing ripe flavours. Terrific effort. 90-91p.
CÔTES DE CASTILLON
Veyry provided aromatic black cherries, tight structure, fine balance and pretty fine finish. Extremely seductive wine. 90-91p.
Joanin Becot was almost as impressive as Veyry with less fruit intensity and shorter aftertaste. 89-90p.
D'Aiguilhe, Cap Faugeres, Clos L'Eglise and Clos Lunelles were very well-made wines with perfumed and tasty dark berries, fine composition and with smooth aftertaste. 89p.
Domaine de L'Aurage showed very nice fruit, structure and length. Well-made wine. 88p.
OK wine - Sainte Colombe. 86-87p.
CÔTES DE FRANCS
de Francs was meaty, ripe fruit and ripe tannins, nice length and aftertaste. Really, really good wine. 87-88p.
Moulin Pey Labrie turned out to be a big surprise and relevation.Beautifully scented aroma od black cherries. Fabulous intensity, beautiful structure, length and formidable balance. Mouthfilling. Fabulous stuff. 90-92p.
Fontenil appeared aromatic on the nose with black cherries, strong, fine balance and depth. 89-90p. Les Troix Croix was similar to Fontenil and as impressive. 89-90p. Terrific stuff.
La Riviere showed perfectly ripe black fruit, fine intensity, concentration and harmony between fruit and ripe tannin. Very fine wine. 89p.
La Dauphine had pretty aromatic cherry fruit, fine balance, fine ripe tannins and smooth aftertaste. Splendid wine. 88-89p.
Barrabaque was strong, chewy, well-balanced and with tasty dark cherry fruit. Fine length. Splendid wine.88p.
Moulin Haut Laroque, Vieille Cure and Villars presented strong backbone, nice ripe fruit, quite much oak but nice balance anyway. Need some time to soften. 87-88p.
L'Ambroisie du Chateau La Croix des Moines and La Graviere were both very successful for the district, showing large amounts of ripe, aromatic and tasty fruit, strong backbone, nice acidity and splendid balance. 88-89p.
de Chambrun, La Fleur de Bouard, Grand Ormeau and Domaine des Sabineswere modern dark wines, quite powerful and well-structured, with nice ripe fruit and tannin. 88p.
Tournefeuille had almost the same good stuff as four wines mentioned above. 87-88p.
OK wine - Domaine Fayat Thunevin. 87p.
d'Aiguilhe Côtes de Castillon 89 Alter Ego de Palmer Margaux 89-90 L'Ambroisie du Ch. La Croix St.Moines Lalande de Pomerol 88-89 Angélus St-Emilion GC 92 d'Angludet Margaux 87 d'Arche Sauternes & Barsac 89 d'Armailhac Pauillac 90-91 Ausone St-Emilion GC 96-97 Bad Boy Bordeaux 88 Balestard La Tonnelle St-Emilion GC 88 Barde-Haut St-Emilion GC 89-90
Barrabaque Canon-Fronsac 88 Bastor Lamontagne Sauternes & Barsac 86 Batailley Pauillac 89-90 Beau-Séjour Bécot St-Emilion GC 90-91 Beaumont Haut-Médoc 86 Beauregard Pomerol 85-86 Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse St-Emilion GC 90-91 Beau Soleil Pomerol 87 Belair-Monange St-Emilion GC 90 Belgrave Haut-Médoc 87-88 Bellevue St-Emilion GC 86 Bellevue de Tayac Margaux 87 Bellevue Mondotte St-Emilion GC 94-95
Berliquet St-Emilion GC 87-88 Beychevelle St-Julien 89-90 Bon Pasteur Pomerol 90-92 Bourgneuf-Vayron Pomerol 90-91 Bouscaut Pessac-Léognan 86-87 Boyd-Cantenac Margaux 86 Branaire St-Julien 89-90 Brane-Cantenac Margaux 87 Broustet Sauternes & Barsac 86 La Cabanne Pomerol 87-88 Caillou Sauternes & Barsac 89 de Camensac Haut-Médoc 86-87 Canon St-Emilion GC 90-91 Canon-La-Gaffelière St-Emilion GC 90-92
Cantemerle Haut-Médoc 88-89 Cantenac-Brown Margaux 87 Cap de Faugères Côtes de Castillon 89 Cap de Mourlin St-Emilion GC 88-89 Carbonnieux Pessac-Léognan 90-92 Carbonnieux white Pessac-Léognan 90-91Les Carmes Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 88 Carruades de Lafite Rothschild Pauillac 89-90 Certan de May de Certan Pomerol 90-91 de Chambrun Lalande de Pomerol 88 Chantegrive Graves 88 Chantegrive white Graves 90-92
Chapelle d'Ausone St-Emilion GC 89-90 La Chapelle de la Mission Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 89-90 Cheval Blanc St-Emilion GC 96-97 Citran Haut-Médoc 87-88 Le Clarence de Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 90 La Clémence Pomerol 90-92 Clerc Milon Pauillac 88-89 Climens Sauternes & Barsac 95-97 Clinet Pomerol 89-90 Clos Badon Thunevin St-Emilion GC 89-90 Clos des Baies St-Emilion GC 89-90 Clos de l'Oratoire St-Emilion GC 88-89
Clos Fourtet St-Emilion GC 90-93 Clos Haut Peyraguey Sauternes & Barsac 92-94 Clos l'Eglise Pomerol 93 Clos l'Eglise Côtes de Castillon 89 Clos les Lunelles Côtes de Castillon 89 Clos Marsalette Pessac-Léognan 87 La Confession St-Emilion GC 93-95 La Conseillante Pomerol 93-94 Le Conseiller Bordeaux Superieur 88 Coufran Haut-Médoc 88-89 Couhins-Lurton Pessac-Léognan 86-87 Couhins-Lurton white Pessac-Léognan 90-92
Cos-Labory St-Estèphe 87 La Couspaude St-Emilion GC 87-88 Coutet Sauternes & Barsac 92-94 La Croix Saint-Georges Pomerol 93-95 La Croix Pomerol 87 La Croix de Gay Pomerol 87-88 Croix Mouton Bordeaux Superieur 88 Croizet-Bages Pauillac 89-90 Cruzeau Pessac-Léognan 88 Cruzeau white Pessac-Léognan 90-92 La Dame de Montrose St-Estèphe 89-90 Dassault St-Emilion GC 90-91
de La Dauphine Fronsac 88-89 Dauzac Margaux 88 Desmirail Margaux 88 Destieux St-Emilion GC 89-90 Doisy Daene Sauternes & Barsac 94-95 Doisy Vedrines Sauternes & Barsac 89 Domaine de l'Aurage Côtes de Castillon 88p Domaine de Chevalier Pessac-Léognan 91-93 Domaine de Chevalier blanc Pessac-Léognan 95-96 Domaine Fayat-Thunevin Lalande de Pomerol 87 Domaine Fayat-Thunevin Pomerol 87
Domaine des Sabines Lalande de Pomerol 88 La Dominique St-Emilion GC 88-89 Duhart-Milon-Rothschild Pauillac 87 Duo de Conseillante Pomerol 88 de Fargues Sauternes & Barsac 92-95 Faugères St-Emilion GC 88 Faugères Cuvée Péby St-Emilion GC 89-90 Ferrande Graves 86 Ferrande white Graves 87 Ferrand Lartigue St-Emilion GC 88-89 Ferrière Margaux 88 Feytit-Clinet Pomerol 87 de Fieuzal Pessac-Léognan 87 de Fieuzal white Pessac-Léognan 89 Figeac St-Emilion GC 90-93
Filhot Sauternes & Barsac 87 Fleur Cardinale St-Emilion GC 90-91 La Fleur de Boüard Lalande de Pomerol 88 La Fleur de Gay Pomerol 87-88 Fombrauge St-Emilion GC 88 de Fonbel St-Emilion GC 88-89 Fontenil Fronsac 89-90 Les Forts de Latour Pauillac 89-90 Fougas Maldoror Côtes de Bourg 89-90 Franc-Mayne St-Emilion GC 90-91 de France Pessac-Léognan 88 de France white Pessac-Léognan 89 de Francs Cotes de Francs 87-88 La Gaffelière St-Emilion GC 90-91 Le Gay Pomerol 95
Gazin Pomerol 90-92 Giscours Margaux 88-90 La Gomerie St-Emilion GC 88 Grand Corbin-Despagne St-Emilion GC 89-91 Grand Mayne St-Emilion GC 91-92 Grand Ormeau Lalande de Pomerol 88 Grand-Puy-Ducasse Pauillac 88-89 La Graviere Lalande de Pomerol 88-89 Greysac Médoc 86 Gruaud-Larose St-Julien 88 Guiraud Sauternes & Barsac 92-93 Haut Bages Liberal 90-91 Haut-Bailly Pessac-Léognan 89 Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan 90-93 Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan 90-93
Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 96-97 Haut-Brion blanc Pessac-Léognan 96-97 Haut Simard St-Emilion GC 88 Joanin-Bécot Côtes de Castillon 89-90 Kirwan Margaux 88-89 Labégorce Margaux 88 Lafite-Rothschild Pauillac 95-96 Lafleur Pomerol 94-95 Lafon-Rochet St-Estèphe 87 Lafaurie Peyraguey Sauternes & Barsac 90-93 Lagrange St-Julien 88 Lamarque Haut-Médoc 86-87 Lamothe Sauternes & Barsac 85 Lamothe Guignard Sauternes & Barsac 86 Langoa-Barton St-Julien 91-93
Larcis-Ducasse St-Emilion GC 90-92 Larmande St-Emilion GC 89-90 Larrivet-Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 89-91 Lascombes Margaux 87 Latour Pauillac 94-96 Latour-Martillac Pessac-Léognan 89-90 Latour-Martillac white Pessac-Léognan 90-93 Laville Haut Brion Pessac-Léognan 95-96 Léoville-Barton St-Julien 93-95 Léoville-Poyferré St-Julien 93-94 La Louvière Pessac-Léognan 90-92
La Louvière white Pessac-Léognan 90-93 Lynch Bages Pauillac 90-91 Lynch-Moussas Pauillac 88 Lynsolence St-Emilion GC 90-91 Magdelaine St-Emilion GC 90 Magrez-Fombrauge St-Emilion GC 90-91 Malartic-Lagravière Pessac-Léognan 89 Malartic-Lagravière white Pessac-Léognan 90-92 Malescot-Saint-Exupéry Margaux 89-91 de Malle Sauternes & Barsac 86-90? Margaux Margaux 95-96 Marquis de Terme Margaux 88 La Mission Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 95-96 Monbousquet St-Emilion GC 91-93
Monbrison Margaux 88 La Mondotte St-Emilion GC 94-95 Montrose St-Estèphe 92-94 Montviel Pomerol 88-89 Moulin Haut-Laroque Fronsac 87-88 Moulin Pey-Labrie Canon-Fronsac 90-92 Moulin Saint-Georges St-Emilion GC 89-90 Mouton-Rothschild Pauillac 94-95 Myrat Sauternes & Barsac 87 Nairac Sauternes & Barsac 92-95 Olivier Pessac-Léognan 88 Olivier blanc Pessac-Léognan 89 Les Ormes de Pez St-Estèphe 88 Palmer Margaux 94-95 Pape Clément Pessac-Léognan 90-92
Pape Clément blanc Pessac-Léognan 91-93 Pauillac de Château Latour Pauillac 87 Pavie St-Emilion GC 95-96 Pavie-Decesse St-Emilion GC 94-95 Pavie-Macquin St-Emilion GC 94-95 Pavillon Rouge du Château Margaux Margaux 90-92 Pavillon Blanc du Château Margaux Bordeaux 93-95 Pensées de Lafleur Pomerol 89-90 Le Petit Cheval St-Emilion GC 89-90 Le Petit Mouton de Mouton-Rothschild Pauillac 89-90 Petit Village Pomerol 85
Phélan-Ségur St-Estèphe 88 Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande Pauillac 91-93 Picque Caillou Pessac-Léognan 88 Picque Caillou blanc Pessac-Léognan 88 Le Pin Pomerol 95-96 La Pointe Pomerol 87-88 Pontet-Canet Pauillac 94-95 Quinault l'Enclos St-Emilion GC 88 Rabaud Promis Sauternes & Barsac 88 Rauzan-Gassies Margaux 87 Rauzan-Ségla Margaux 88 Raymond Lafon Sauternes & Barsac 92-95 Rayne Vigneau Sauternes & Barsac 87
Reignac Bordeaux Superieur 88 Reynon Côtes de Bordeaux 88 Rieussec Sauternes & Barsac 88-92? de La Riviere Fronsac 89 Roc de Cambes Côtes de Bourg 90-91 Romer du Hayot Sauternes & Barsac 86 Saint-Pierre St-Julien 88 Sansonnet St-Emilion GC 88 Sigalas Rabaud Sauternes & Barsac 88 Simard St-Emilion GC 87 Smith Haut Lafitte Pessac-Léognan 90-92 Smith Haut Lafitte white Pessac-Léognan 91-93
Suau Sauternes & Barsac 88 Suduiraut Sauternes & Barsac 93-95 Talbot St-Julien 88 du Tertre Margaux 88 Tertre-Roteboeuf St-Emilion GC 94-96 La Tour du Pin (owned by Cheval Blanc) St-Emilion GC 89 La Tour-Carnet Haut-Médoc 88-89 Tournefeuille Lalande de Pomerol 87-88 Les Trois Croix Fronsac 89-90 Tronquoy-Lalande St-Estèphe 88 Troplong-Mondot St-Emilion GC 90-92? Trottevieille St-Emilion GC 90-91 La Tour Blanche Sauternes & Barsac 92-94
de Valandraud St-Emilion GC 94-95 Veyry Côtes de Castillon 90-91 la Vieille Cure Fronsac 87-88 Vieux Château Certan Pomerol 95 Vieux Maillet Pomerol 87-88 Villars Fronsac 87-88 Vingt Mille Bordeaux Superieur 89 la Violette Pomerol 93-94 Virginie de Valandraud St-Emilion GC 90 d'Yquem Sauternes & Barsac 96-98
Tasting of 2008 vintage from app. 25 properties in Copenhagen on the 3rd September 2009
D'Aiguilhe 2008 – not rated as barrel sample was oxidized.
Angelus 2008 - was very strong and powerful with sweet fruit and long aftertaste. Modern style. Very well made. 93p.
D'Armailhac 2008 - very charming on the nose with sweet ripe fruit, deep and intense, a lot of goodies on the palate, silky and gracious finish. Splendid effort. 90p.
Beychevelle 2008 – on the light side but extremely elegant with lot of charm and finesse. 89p.
Branaire 2008 – on the light side, aromatic, nice balance, round and soft finish. 89p.
Camensac 2008 – on the light side, but pretty tasty wine with nice flavours and nice length. Soft and round. 87p.
Canon La Gaffeliere 2008 – almost as impressive as Clos Fourtet with less concentration and intensity. Splendid effort. 92p.
Cantemerle 2008 – as fine as in April this year, Seductive and charming, intense, delightfully balanced. Splendid length and gracious aftertaste. Fine effort for the vintage. 89-90p.
Les Carmes Haut Brion 2008 - elegant wine, round, with nice fruit intensity and harmony. 88-89p.
Chasse Spleen 2008 – clear improvement from April this year. Strong backbone, sappy, sweet black fruit, splendid balance and long aftertaste. 90-91p.
La Clemence 2008 – meaty and powerful with splendid depth, length and aftertaste. 92p.
Clerc Milon 2008 - plenty of ripe fruit, round, perfumed and seductive. Splendid intensity of dark berries and concentration and firm aftertaste. I like it! 89-90p.
Clos L'Oratoire 2008 - nice silky fruit and tannins, round, lovely structure and balance. 89p.
Clos Fourtet 2008 - fine, seductive and aromatic on the nose with great intensity and depth. Ripe fruit well supported by ripe tannins. Quite long aftertaste. Superb quality. 92-93p.
Coutet 2008 - delightful sweetness and acidity, peach and pear and dried apricots. Long and smooth finish. 92-93p.
Destieux 2008 - well-made wine with splendid ripe fruit and splendid balance. 89-90p.
Domaine de Chevalier red 2008 - intense and aromatic on the nose with black cherries and blackcurrants, splendid depth and length, smooth aftertaste. Terrific effort for the vintage. 91-93p.
Domaine de Chevalier white 2008 - Very open, incredibly aromatic with lemon and pineapple, incredibly attractive, tasty and smooth, caressing aftertaste. Magnificent showing! 95-96p.
Gazin 2008 - full-bodied with strong backbone, meaty, ripe fruit and tannin everywhere, splendid balance and structure. Great effort for the vintage. 90-92p.
Giscours 2008 - showed fine intensity of black fruit with fresh flavours, silky tannins, splendid depth and length, fine balance and firm finish. Splendid wine for the vintage and has improved since I tasted it during primeur week.
Grand Puy Lacoste 2008 – strong, aromatic and well-balanced wine showing great depth and finesse. A very stylish and classy Pauillac. 91p.
Guiraud 2008 – quite reminiscent of Coutet but with slightly less depth and acidity. Very fine quality. 92p.
Haut Bailly 2008 – has clearly improved since I tasted it in April this year and shows now its excellent qualities. Strong with splendid depth, very concentrated and long on the palate, terrific balance and long lasting finish. Great effort. 93-94p.
Labegorce 2008 – as Labegorce Zede 2008. 86p.
Labegorce Zede 2008 – not particulary exciting wine, light, healthy, round and with good fruit. 86p.
Lagrange 2008 - dark, intense on the nose with black berries, a good bite on the palate with nice fruit, smooth and nice aftertaste. Very nice wine. 90p.
Leoville Poyferre 2008 - extremely well-made, all in black wild cherries. Elegant, sophisticated and gracefully balanced. Gracious aftertaste. Fabulous wine. 94p.
Marquis d'Alesme Becker 2008 – fat and meaty wine with silky fruit and considerable finesse. 88-89p.
Phelan Segur 2008 - did breake several wine hearts too with tasty, harmonious and seductive wine. 88p.
Pontet Canet 2008 – still very impressive as it showed in April this year. Extremely aromatic and intense, strong structure, sophisticated and with stunning length. Excellent stuff. 95+p.
Poujeaux 2008 – pretty and nicely balanced wine with considerable depth and intensity, but light. Will not make old bones. 87p.
Smith Haut Lafitte red 2008 - an oaky and meaty wine, with enough of ripe, aromatic and fresh red-/blackcurrants to balance tannins. Clearly fine effort for the vintage. 90-92p.
Smith Haut Lafitte white 2008 - dense, flavorful (acacia flower, apple and peach), well-knitted wine with fine acidity and strong finish. 92p. Tasted in September 2010.
du Tertre 2008 - quite round and balanced but a bit vegetable and edgy. Not good to taste at the moment. 87p.
ADDITIONAL 2008s TASTED IN BORDEAUX, OCTOBER 2009
Cantelauze - dense, tight, plenty of black cherries, full-bodied on the palate, strong structure, splendid depth, long aftertaste. Excellent. 91-92p
La Conseillante - as impressive as in March 2009. 93-94p.
Corbin Michotte - black berries on the nose, fine intensity, splendid balance and long aftertaste. Delightful wine. 90p.
Valandraud - very ripe, strong backbone, splendid concentration and length, strongly structured on the palate, and with perfect balance. Formidable wine. 94-95p.
ADDITIONAL 2008s TASTED IN BORDEAUX, OCTOBER 2010
Bad Boy - pleasant, round and soft wine, fruity and drinking extremaly well. 87p.
Domaine des Sabines - tasted together with 2009 vintage of same wine and 2008 was a bit lighter than 2009. Seductive and attractive wine, expressing delicious aroma of black cherries, elegance, suppleness and smooth aftertaste. 89p.
Le Clos de Beau-Pere - tasted together with 2009 vintage of same wine and 2008 was almost as splendid as 2009. Intense nose of wild cherries, soft texture, fine balance, very fine complexity and caressing aftertaste. Splendid effort. 90p.
Virginie de Valandraud - tasted together with 2009 vintage of same wine and 2008 was a real heartbreaker. Feminin Valandraud with lighter approach and relying on elegance and grace. 91p.
Clos Badon - tasted together with 2009 vintage of same wine and 2008 was better now than 2009, displaying fine aromas of blackberries and chocolate, strong and chewy with fine acidity. No dryness to be found here. 90p.
Bellevue de Tayac - tasted together with 2009 vintage of same wine and 2008 appeared similar to 2009. Should be much more approachable in 2-4 years time. 87p.
Valandraud - tasted together with 2009 vintage of same wine and 2008 has improved since I tasted it in October 2009. Now it's in bottle. Stunning nose of black cherries (cérise noir) and blackberries, strong backbone, great concentration and length, fabulous structure and perfect balance. Formidable wine. 95-96p.