Fourcas hosten vineyard.jpg copy

So Chic, So Listrac: Fourcas Hosten

France: Bordeaux, featured, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Jul 2021

The Bordelais have always been the epitome of chic – in the way they carry themselves, in their deportment, in how they dress irrespective of age. They cannot countenance shabbiness. Perhaps at home they slob around in tatty jogging bottoms and flip-flops, but the boulevards of Bordeaux are a veritable crisscross of catwalks and luxury boutiques. Perhaps then, it is unsurprising that fashion houses have been lured to Bordeaux and acquired some its most famous châteaux.

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Two + Two = Trouble

France: Bordeaux, featured

Neal Martin, Jul 2021

The recent announcement that Cheval Blanc and Ausone would not participate in the forthcoming Saint-Émilion Classification caused shockwaves across Bordeaux and beyond. I examine both sides of the argument as the appellation comes to terms with a classification without two of its star players.

Larrivaux 2003

Cellar Favorite: 2003 Larrivaux

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Jul 2021

Readers do not have to shell out for the top names to enjoy the wines, as proven by a 2003 Larrivaux recently served blind by proprietor Bérangère Tesseron, the ‘better half’ of Basile Tesseron at neighbouring Lafon-Rochet.

Lynch moussas 1996

Cellar Favorite: 1996 Lynch-Moussas

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Jun 2021

Much of aristocratic Pauillac has become too expensive for many wine-lovers in recent years. That classification back in 1855 went straight to its head. Yet, there are gems to be discovered…if you know where to look.

Antonio galloni bordeaux en primeur 2020 3

2020 Bordeaux En Primeur: Almost Back to Normal

France: Bordeaux, featured

Antonio Galloni, Jun 2021

Two thousand-twenty was a year of ups and downs. A number of challenges during the growing season kept vineyard managers and winemakers on their toes, just as the world grappled with the most serious health crisis in living memory. Now that the 2020s are being released en primeur, the Bordelais refer to the vintage as the third in a ‘trilogy’ that includes 2018 and 2019, but it’s not always easy to separate the marketing buzz from reality. How did the wines turn out?

Cos d estournel facade

Vingt-Vingt Vins: Bordeaux 2020

France: Bordeaux, featured

Neal Martin, May 2021

Twenty-twenty was a year that turned out like no other, yet Nature ploughs on regardless, another Bordeaux vintage, another primeur and another report from barrel. Does 2020 complete the triumvirate? Does it really belong up there with the greatest vintages? As usual, I ignored all the hype and tell it how I find it.

Bottle line up with ja nony

His Father’s Son: Grand Mayne 1955-2011

France: Bordeaux, featured, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, May 2021

Jean-Antoine Nony was one of the first winemakers I ever interviewed for Wine-Journal in 2003. Almost two decades later, I finally return to Grand Mayne to conduct a comprehensive vertical and discover more about this ascendant Saint-Émilion estate.

Cover

2005 Bordeaux: Here and Now

France: Bordeaux, featured, Verticals & Retrospectives

Antonio Galloni, Apr 2021

It all started innocently enough with a few bottles of 2005 Bordeaux during lockdown. Then a few more, and then some more after that. Before I knew it I had tasted through a good number of the reference points. The wines were absolutely thrilling, just as I remembered from my last large tasting of the 2005s, about five years ago. One of my close friends suggested a comprehensive look back at the vintage, so here it is.

2018 bordeaux cover final

Bordeaux 2018: Not Back in Black

France: Bordeaux, featured

Antonio Galloni, Mar 2021

After an uneven vintage in 2017, Bordeaux was buzzing with anticipation over the 2018s. To be sure, the wines were showy from barrel, but tasting en primeur is always a moving target. The wines are of course very young and sensitive to atmospheric changes as well as other variables. Now that the 2018s have been bottled, do they live up to expectations?

Issan 2005 bottle

Cellar Favorite: The Fives at Château d’Issan

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Mar 2021

Following the vertical that I conducted at the estate back in 2018, I recently joined Emmanuel Cruse via Zoom for a small tasting of recent vintages of “The Fives”, including the 2000 d’Issan that was not included in my The Marital Margaux: d’Issan 1945-2015 article.