The Cru Bourgeois classification lists some of the Chateau from the Médoc that were not included in the 1855 Classification of Classified Growths. The first Cru Bourgeois list was drawn up by the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce in 1932, selecting 444 estates for the classification. A substantial revision of the classification in 2003 reduced the number of Chateau listed to 247. This list is now revisited every year.
The Alliance des Crus Bourgeois du Médoc did an online tasting earlier this week. I was fortunate to participate. All the wines below were provided as samples.
2012 Chateau Les Ormes Sorbet – Crimson in color. 13% ABV. Red fruits, dark chocolate, espresso and graphite on the nose. Medium body with light acidity. Cherries, currants and a touch of vanilla on the palate. Soft and round. No tannins to speak of. Not yet imported into the US. My rating: 87 points.
2012 Chateau Rollan de By – Bloood red in color. 13% ABV. Dark fruits, cedar and coffee beans on the nose. Soft and supple. Medium body with light acidity. Licorice, plums and cherries on the palate. Enjoyable and easy to drink. No reason to wait on this wine. $25 at retail. My rating: 86 points.
2012 Chateau Bibian – Bright red in color. 13.5% ABV. Big nose of red fruits, smoke and leather. Medium body with light to medium acidity. Cherries, cassis and cranberries on the palate. A touch on the green side. Drying tannins on a medium length finish. Drink over the next 1-3 years. $21 at retail. My rating: 87 points.
2012 Chateau Landat – Light crimson in color. 13% ABV. Plums, tobacco and earth on the nose. Light body yet medium acidity. Tart cherries, cassis and currants on the palate. Decent structure with drying tannins on a nice finish. Drink over the next several years. $22 at retail. My rating: 88 points.
2012 Chateau Lestage Simon – Dark crimson in color. 13.5% ABV. Red fruits, graphite and anise on a seductive nose. Rich and full bodied. The Merlot jumps out of the glass. Currants, cassis and cherries on the palate. Delicious wine that should drink well for the next 2-4 years. $22 at retail. My rating: 91 points.
2012 Tour Des Termes – Dark red in color. 13.5% ABV. Nice nose of black fruits, leather and plums. Rich and plush with medium body. Blackberries, currants, cassis and tobacco on the palate. Dusty tannins on a long, silky finish. Really delicious. Drink over the next 2-4 years. $30 at retail. My rating: 91 points.
2012 Chateau Le Crock – Purple in color. 13% ABV. Cigar box, cocoa powder and red fruits on the nose. Power and concentration in this full bodied wine. Raspberry, graphite and cassis on the palate. Supple tannins on a long finish. Drink over the next 3-5 years. $45 at retail. My rating: 90 points.
2012 Chateau Lilian Ladouys – Bright crimson in color. 13% ABV. Smoke, earth and lavender on the precocious nose. Medium body with nice structure. Black cherry, herbs and light cassis on the palate. I was hoping for just a little more fruit. Dry, dusty tannins on a medium length finish. Drink over the next 2-4 years. $30 at retail. My rating: 89 points.
It may be a coincidence or perhaps a reflection of the vintage but the two wines of the tasting, Lestage Simon and Tour Des Termes are both Merlot dominant blends.
Bordeaux is more often than not associated with the Classified Growths and in years past has drawn criticism for exorbitant prices. What flies under the radar is that some of the very best wine values in the world also come from Bordeaux. The wines above are available at retail right now. The super 14’s will be coming to market in the next year or two. Exciting times for an exciting region.
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