Bordeaux

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    B1407 2014 Château la France, Bordeaux +

    53% sémillon, 39% sauvignon blanc, 8% sauvignon gris. An attractive pale gold in colour, the nose is fresh and intense, with floral notes and hints of citrus; the palate is ripe but still lively, with grapefruit acidity and a long finish. Devoid of oak character, this is a very representative white Bordeaux that balance sauvignon vibrancy with sémillon roundness — ideal for summer drinking, it will also stand up to richer sauces and Asian spicing. 12.5% vol.

    £92.16 £7.68
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    B51B 2014 Château la Rivalerie, 1ères Côtes de Blaye +

    60% sauvignon blanc, 20% sauvignon gris, 20% sémillon. With aromas of lemon and tropical fruit, this has become richer with bottle maturity but retains its sauvignon freshness.

    £102.96 £8.58
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    B717 2007 Château Lamothe-Guignard, Sauternes 2ème cru classé +

    90% sémillon, 5% sauvignon blanc, 5% muscadelle. From one of the highest vineyards in Sauternes; now a rich gold in appearance, this retains delightful nuances of apricot and mandarin.

    £306.00 £25.50
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    B913 2009 Château la Garde, Pessac-Léognan +

    Sauvignon blanc, sémillon.

    “Fresh, full in the mouth wine, a bright sauvignon character, rounded and with a pear fruit character. Just touched by wood.” 90-92 points
    Roger Voss, Wine Enthusiast (April 2010)

    £312.48 £26.04
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    B1007 2010 Château Couhins, Pessac-Léognan +

    95% sauvignon blanc, 5% sauvignon gris. From a tiny vineyard owned by the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique and with the late Denis Dubourdieu as a consultant — complex with notes of grapefruit, smoke and especially passionfruit.

    £333.36 £27.78
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    B998 2009 Sauternes (special purchase) +

    Sémillon, sauvignon blanc. Made from barrels not included in the grand vin final blend at Sauternes’ most famous property, this rich and concentrated wine offers flavours of apricot, coconut and spice.

    £422.88 £35.24
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    B1312 2013 Château la Garde, Pessac-Léognan +

    70% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot.

    “Fine floral and cassis nose, good fleshy fruit with Graves earthy grip in the middle, good depth.”
    Stephen Spurrier MW, decanter.com

    £246.24 £20.52
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    B211H 2012 Château Saint-Christophe, Saint-Emilion grand cru +

    Merlot, cabernet franc. Based in Saint-Christophe des Bardes (two miles east of Saint-Emilion), the Richard family cultivate twenty-three acres of clay and limestone neighbouring parcels belonging to l’Arrosée and Fombrauges.

    On the 2006 vintage: “Classic stuff, there’s a touch of mineral, iron-oxide bloodiness on the nose, a hint of leafiness and cedar, and then a lean core of bramble and blackcurrant fruit. On the palate it is very grown-up claret, with a tensioning grip of tannin and powerful acidity, the spices and the sinewy black fruit coming through on the mid-palate. The wine finishes on savoury fruit and spice, in delicious Bordeaux style.” Tom Cannavan, wine-pages.com (June 2014)

    £203.33 £16.94
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    B219F 2012 Château la Bergère, Montagne Saint-Emilion +

    Merlot, cabernet franc. The Benoist family purchased la Bergère (and Moulin la Bergère in neighbouring Saint-Georges) in 1998; since then they’ve employed sustainable farming and minimal intervention to produce vibrant, sappy wines approachable in youth but with the potential to age very nicely.

    £143.28 £11.94
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    B220C 2012 Château Moulin la Bergère, Saint-Georges Saint-Emilion +

    Merlot, cabernet franc. Made by father and son team André and Camille Benoist, this manages to be a longstanding fixture on Nethergate lists and an attractively modern wine — ripe blackberry fruit, gentle spice and supple tannin.

    £160.56 £13.38
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    B236 2012 Petit Paveil, Bordeaux +

    70% merlot, 30% cabernet sauvignon. Made from a ten-hectare parcel near the village of Soussans, this is the perfect introduction to the house style of Margaux cru bourgeois Paveil de Luze — subtle red fruit, silky tannin and appealing freshness.

    £121.68 £10.14
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    B230C 2012 Château de Seguin, Bordeaux Supérieur +

    50% merlot, 40% cabernet sauvignon, 10% cabernet franc. From a single 95 hectare clay and limestone vineyard arguably with Gallo-Roman origins, this displays a deep ruby colour with purple tints. On the nose there are powerful aromas of red and black fruit with some spice, while the palate is full with mellow tannins and a long, rich finish.

    £125.14 £10.43
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    B219H 2012 Château Tourteau, Montagne Saint-Emilion +

    Merlot, cabernet franc. From a small family-owned parcel in Montagne (two kilometres north of Saint-Emilion), this has surprising depth and complexity for a ‘minimum intervention’ wine vinified in concrete and stainless steel.

    £131.76 £10.98
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    B1103 2011 Château Bournac, Médoc cru bourgeois +

    70% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot. Grown in the heart of the Médoc, five miles north of Saint-Estèphe, this is a traditional cru bourgeois property benefiting from modern winemaking: supple and finely-structured, with rich cassis fruit and hints of smoke.

    £144.00 £12.00
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    B46D 2010 Château la Rivalerie, 1ères Côtes de Blaye +

    Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, malbec. A fine petit château wine from Bordeaux: elegant blackcurrant fruit with notes of cedarwood.

    £103.82 £8.65
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    B1002 2010 Château Moulin Saint-Georges, Saint-Emilion grand cru +

    Merlot, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon. With seventeen acres of vineyards on south-west facing limestone, Moulin Saint-Georges is produced by the Vauthier family of neighbouring premier grand cru classé Ausone.

    £394.56 £32.88
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    B1013 2010 Château la Tour de By, Médoc cru bourgeois +

    65% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot, 5% petit verdot. Situated in Bégadan, at the northern extremity of wine production in the Médoc and a good forty miles from Bordeaux, la Tour de By has a well-established reputation for traditional claret in the ‘English’ style — but recent vintages show an appropriate richness and complexity. 13% ABV

    “Very sweet, ripe black fruits on the nose. Solid, fruity, dense with gravelly chew. No artifice. Very nice expression of place and time. Some astringency, but real life and lift. A delicate hand! Transparency. Real delicacy. Very refreshing, with lovely length.” 16.5 points
    Jancis Robinson MW

    £218.88 £18.24
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    B1004 2010 Château Sociando-Mallet, Haut-Médoc cru bourgeois +

    55% cabernet sauvignon, 40% merlot, 5% cabernet franc.

    “The classic 2010 displays everything one expects from this over-achieving Haut-Médoc. A dense purple colour is followed by aromas of blueberries, blackcurrants, graphite and crushed rocks, a layered, full-bodied mouthfeel, stunning concentration and sweet, more polished and refined tannins than are normally found in barrel samples of Sociando-Mallet. This cuvée should last for 20-30 years.” 91/93 points
    Robert Parker, Wine Advocate 194 (May 2011)

    £345.60 £28.80
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    B905 2009 Château Angludet, Margaux cru bourgeois +

    50% cabernet sauvignon, 38% merlot, 12% petit verdot. On paper ‘only’ a cru bourgeois property, Angludet regularly produces wines of cru classé quality.

    £331.68 £27.64
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    B901 2009 Château Belgrave, Haut-Médoc 5ème cru classé +

    75% cabernet sauvignon, 20% merlot, 5% petit verdot.

    “This has a tight, but well defined bouquet with blackberry, raspberry leaf, cedar and a touch of violets. Bright and lively. The palate is full-bodied with a juicy, fruit-driven entry, but then the tannins on the back palate show that this Haut-Médoc has good backbone. Well-balanced, lovely grainy black fruit infused with tobacco on the persistent finish. This is an excellent, very ‘classic’ Haut-Médoc and a great 2009.” 90-92 points.
    Neal Martin, erobertparker.com (April 2010)

    £338.40 £28.20
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    B916 2009 Château les Hauts-Conseillants, Lalande de Pomerol +

    80% merlot, 20% cabernet franc.

    “A delicious, fruit-forward, plump wine with loads of raspberry and black cherry fruit intertwined with hints of underbrush and liquorice, this medium-bodied, fat, fleshy 2009 should drink well for 5-7 years.” 87-89 points
    Robert Parker, Wine Advocate 188 (April 2010)

    £213.12 £17.76
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    B920 2009 Château Paveil de Luze, Margaux cru bourgeois +

    70% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot.

    From our own en primeur tasting notes:
    “A nose that greets you as it’s poured; polished black fruit and spicy depth; serious length. More weight than previous years – to me this reflects the vintage. Very fine. Drink 2013-25.”

    £259.20 £21.60
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    B901 2009 Château Pédesclaux, Pauillac 5ème cru classé +

    Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc. In front of Mouton-Rothschild and Pontet-Canet, the history of fifth growth Pédesclaux in the late 20th century may have been unremarkable — but since its purchase by the Lorenzetti family in 2009, the property has undergone a startling renaissance in quality and reputation.

    “Lovely nose of ripe black fruits; harmonious and beguiling. Very fine on the palate with lots of ripeness allied to fine-grained tannins and balancing acidity. Rich, beautifully structured, classic and profound.”
    Alun Griffiths MW, decanter.com (June 2015)

    A more detailed but less reverent tasting of the wine: The Clarion Review

    £364.32 £30.36
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    B922 2009 Château Perron, Lalande de Pomerol +

    80% merlot, 10% cabernet sauvignon, 10% cabernet franc.

    “Lalande-de-Pomerol, just north of Pomerol, is a great appellation to scour for good value Bordeaux. The smell of this particular wine is sensuous, inviting the taster with notes of cedar and wet tobacco. Succulent and easy to drink, it is a crowd-pleaser that will certainly not disappoint.” — Will Lyons, Wall Street Journal (March 2013)

    £198.72 £16.56
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    B923 2009 Château Prieuré-Canteloup, 1ères Côtes de Bordeaux +

    75% merlot, 25% cabernet sauvignon. Made by the celebrated consultant Stephan von Neipperg.

    “A potential sleeper of the vintage, this merlot-dominated blend reveals an exuberantly fruity, lush wine with lots of blackcurrant, cherry and plum-like fruit.”
    Robert Parker, Wine Advocate 188 (April 2010)

    £152.64 £12.72
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    B902 2009 Château Saint-Christophe ‘le Primas’, Saint-Emilion grand cru +

    100% merlot. A special cuvée from the Richard family’s best parcels, made only in selected vintages, that displays all the power and elegance of a grand cru classé.

    £334.80 £27.90
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    B926 2009 Château Tour de Pez, Saint-Estèphe cru bourgeois +

    45% cabernet sauvignon, 40% merlot, 10% cabernet franc, 5% petit verdot.

    “The nose is rather closed compared to other Saint-Estèphes: blackberry, raspberry leaf and some oyster shell scents developing with time, yet it remains pinched. The palate is medium-bodied with firm tannins, nicely balanced with good delineation, leading to a pleasing cedar and earth tinged finish with good depth of fruit. This has great potential.” 90-92 points
    Neal Martin, erobertparker.com (April 2010)

    £266.40 £22.20
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    B919 2009 Château les Templiers ‘Cuvée la Rollandière’, Lalande de Pomerol +

    80% merlot, 20% cabernet sauvignon. Initially smooth and rounded, a firmer structure soon reveals itself — blackcurrant fruit and a core of spice.

    £187.20 £15.60
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    B903 2009 Château la Tour Carnet, Haut-Médoc 4ème cru classé +

    53% merlot, 40% cabernet sauvignon, 5% cabernet franc, 2% petit verdot (Neal Martin); 62% merlot, 35% cabernet sauvignon, ‘tiny dollops’ of petit verdot and cabernet franc (Robert Parker).

    “…this has a ripe, plum, blueberry and cassis scented nose with good definition, if just a little obvious at the moment. Very ripe and sensuous, more like a Right Bank bouquet. The palate is medium-bodied with good acidity, very fine tannins, a slight metallic edge on the entry, good density and focus here with great delineation towards the linear finish. Tightly wound, nicely controlled for the vintage.” 91-93 points
    Neal Martin, RobertParker.com (April 2010)

    £336.96 £28.08
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    B211i 2008 Château Saint-Christophe, Saint-Emilion +

    Merlot, cabernet franc. A rich, full-bodied wine with a nose of black plum and liquorice, while the palate offers an appealing texture with glossy richness right through to the finish.

    £174.38 £14.53
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    B820 2008 Château Paveil de Luze, Margaux cru bourgeois +

    Chateau Paveil de Luze 2008
    70% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot. A historic Margaux property owned by the de Luze family since 1862, with winemaking now overseen by consultant Stéphane Derenoncourt. Classic Left Bank claret, this is typically structured yet seductive.

    £262.08 £21.84
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    B729D 2007 double magnums £236.88 £86.64
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    B801 2008 Château les Ormes de Pez, Saint-Estèphe cru bourgeois +

    51% cabernet sauvignon, 39% merlot, 8% cabernet franc, 2% petit verdot.

    “This dark ruby/purple-tinged sleeper of the vintage offers a sweet bouquet of blackcurrants, underbrush, liquorice and berry fruit. Medium to full-bodied with excellent depth, good acidity and an endearing roundness, it can be enjoyed now and over the next 8-10 years.” 88 points
    Robert Parker, Wine Advocate 194 (May 2011)

    £243.36 £20.28
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    B606 2006 Château Léoville-Barton, Saint-Julien 2ème cru classé +

    Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc. Despite the absence of an actual château (the wines are made at sister-property Langoa-Barton), Léoville-Barton entirely warrants its reputation as a discrete but perennially classy ‘super-Second’.

    “Not surprisingly, this wine is closed, masculine, but super-rich, with a denser, more complete and full-bodied style than its sibling, Langoa-Barton. Some toasty vanillin is apparent in the blackcurrant aromas intermixed with tobacco leaf, cedar and spice box. The wine is full-bodied and has a boatload of tannin, not unusual for this estate, as well as an impressively pure, long finish. Everything is here, but this wine, made with uncompromising vision, is meant to be cellared for an exceptionally long period of time. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2035.” 91+ points
    Robert Parker, Wine Advocate 181 (February 2009)

    £856.80 £71.40
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    B293 2004 Château Charmail, Haut-Médoc cru bourgeois +

    55% merlot, 30% cabernet sauvignon, 15% cabernet franc. A single plot on gravel banks just north of Saint-Estèphe and overlooking the Gironde, Charmail has been described by Robert Parker as “one of the most consistent crus bourgeois in the last 10-15 years”.

    £261.36 £21.78
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    B233D 2004 Château de la Rivière, Fronsac +

    Merlot, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, malbec. The largest estate in Fronsac and one of the most imposing buildings in the whole region (including eight HECTARES of cellar carved into limestone), la Rivière is renowned for their old vines and ecologically sensitive vineyard management. The 2004 vintage is initially firm, but ripe fruit comes through on the complex mid-palate.

    £228.96 £19.08
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    B271 2003 Château d’Aurilhac, Haut-Mèdoc cru bourgeois +

    Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, petit verdot. A consistent cru bourgeois from twenty hectares of clay, sand and gravel on the plateau in Saint-Seurin de Cadourne (immediately north of Saint-Estèphe), where vines have been cultivated since the medieval period. While the nose still shows dark fruit reflecting the heat of the vintage, the palate is smooth and gentle.

    £182.88 £15.24
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    B239B 2003 Château Fourcas-Dupré, Listrac cru bourgeois +

    Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, petit verdot. With a number of properties in the lieu-dit of Fourcas, the château named in 1843 for a Bordeaux lawyer is known for reliable, balanced wines with the capacity for long ageing.

    £190.08 £15.84
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    B295 2002 Château Coutelin-Merville, Saint-Estèphe cru bourgeois +

    Merlot, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, petit verdot. Coutelin-Merville has belonged to the Estager family since 1902 and is currently run by Bernard and François, great-grandsons of the original owner. With a surprisingly high percentage of cabernet franc (anything up to a quarter of the final blend), this offers complex aromas of red fruit, coffee and spice.

    £228.24 £19.02
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    B239C 2002 Château Fourcas-Dupré, Listrac cru bourgeois +

    Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, petit verdot. With a number of properties in the lieu-dit of Fourcas, the château named in 1843 for a Bordeaux lawyer is known for reliable, balanced wines with the capacity for long ageing.

    £182.88 £15.24
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    B233B 2002 Château de la Rivière, Fronsac +

    Merlot, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, malbec. The largest estate in Fronsac and one of the most imposing buildings in the whole region (including eight HECTARES of cellar carved into limestone), la Rivière is renowned for their old vines and ecologically sensitive vineyard management. The 2002 vintage is now round and fully mature, with appealing length.

    £192.96 £16.08
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