Bordeaux Merlot

Domaine de Galouchey

'Vin de Jardin' Red Bordeaux Blend 2018

Day 2: This is killer. Super fresh but firm/structured. Atypical Bordeaux. Organic field blend. 13.5%. —- Domaine de Galouchey has to be one of Bordeaux's most idiosyncratic producers. The vineyards of this domaine were cleared and planted by Jean Terrade and Gérard Pantanacce, but things didn't really start to take off until they partnered with renowned sommelier Marco Peltier. They make two wines from organically grown grapes from their tiny estate and their Vin de Jardin (Wine of the Garden) might be the most exciting thing to come from Bordeaux in a very long time.

Galouchey is in Beychac-and-Caillau, 7 km from Libourne, across the river from Saint-Emilion and Pomerol. They could choose to label their bottle as a Bordeaux but instead choose the simple table wine designation of Vin de France. This is so that they can make a wine that they feel more closely reflect the type of Bordeaux that they want to drink. Something more closely aligned with the region's wines before WW11 when commercial interest and the armies of consultants ushered in an era of homogeneity. This area is mostly known for dry whites and value reds but in the 18th century the wines from in and around the estate were some of the most sought after.

The vineyard sits on land that has never been touched by modern synthetic agricultural additives and has been farmed organically from day one. All the permitted grape varieties of the region – Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Carmenere, Petit Verdot, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Sauvignon Gris and Muscadelle – are planted in the vineyard and the wine is made as a blend of all of the grapes, white and red. Merlot plays the lead with white varieties playing very small yet important roles. This was the way it was done many generations ago when most Bordeaux was a field blend.

Each of the nine varieties is separately harvested by hand at very low yields. Top quality Bordeaux estate can regularly produce 7,000 bottles per hectare, but the trio took it further limiting yields and producing only 3,600 bottles. This means sorting at the winery is surgical, with only the grapes going into the vat they would want to eat. Made with almost no sulfur, nothing is added or removed. The result is a masterpiece of Bordeaux and one that you don't have to pay $100 or more for.

Freshness and drinkability are not terms that we associate with Bordeaux but that is the first thing that came to mind after one sip. It’s bright fruit melds into its seamless texture. This is very much Bordeaux with flavors and aromas of tobacco, dark chocolate, graphite, and wild herbs but there is a purity of fruit and incredibly vivid floral notes that take this to another level.
— 3 days ago

Josh, Eric and 4 others liked this

Château Bellefont-Belcier

St. Émilion Red Bordeaux Blend 2017

It is time for some Merlot on this #MerlotThursday.

This is a very tasty Merlot based blend from Saint Emilion.

Full-bodied with medium acidity.

Dry on the palate with nice complexity.

Showing blueberries, black plums, cooked cherries, cola, chocolates, light vanilla, oak, light vegetables, herbs and black pepper.

This 5 year old is still young and needs three to five years in the bottle to mature. Will continue to age nicely in the next 10 years.

I had it a few months ago and this time I gave it 24 hours to open up in the bottle. Much better this way.

Good by itself or with food. I enjoyed it with Camembert cheese and crackers.

A blend of 68% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Cabernet Franc.

15% alcohol by volume.

91 points.

$60.
— 8 days ago

Vanessa, Jay and 11 others liked this

Château Lestage-Simon

Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend 2014

Dark, blackish robe, nose of asphalt, black cherries, anise and flowers. Medium bodied and rich but not overdone. Lots of Merlot here but good share of Cabernet too, like 60/40 I guess. Very classical in style and most pleasant, we liked it a great deal. — 19 days ago

Adriana Pagliano
with Adriana
Severn, Anthony and 1 other liked this

Château Laroze

Famille Meslin St. Émilion Grand Cru Merlot Blend 2014

Dark ruby colour. Dense nose: oak, blackberry/blackcurrant, cedar, very Bordeaux. Palate, supple, balanced, medium-bodied, with rounded tannins. Final average duration. Correct for its price. Classic style: the perfect Saint-Émilion à Papa. Not my favourite style but for its price, it's correct.

Robe rubis sombre. Nez dense: chêne, mûre/cassis, cèdre, très bordelais. Bouche souple, équilibrée, moyennement corsée, aux tanins arrondis. Finale durée moyenne. Correct pour son prix. Style classique: le parfait Saint-Émilion à Papa. Pas mon style de prédilection mais pour son prix, c’est correct.
— 15 days ago

Peter, Rob and 13 others liked this

Château Moulin de Tricot

Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend 2005

Old school in a good way. Mellow, elegant. Cab-forward but the merlot is def there in the background. Black currant, tobacco, cedar, some red fruit notes. My kind of Bordeaux — 12 days ago

Lyle, Ira and 11 others liked this
Peter van den Besselaar

Peter van den Besselaar Influencer Badge

A under the radar find!

Château Cheval Blanc

St. Émilion Red Bordeaux Blend 2001

#MerlotThursday

So a few years ago I started my Merlot Thursday series, where I drink Merlot every Thursday. This is actually the wine that started it all. After watching the movie sideways a few times, I decided to try to get Merlot back in the game.

This wine was on my wishlist for a long long time, and I'm glad I am able to try it, finally.

Medium plus in body with medium acidity.

Showing a beautiful nose with great complexity,

Dry on the palate and elegant.

Showing red and black fruits with earth, wood, spices, peppercorn, coffee, graphites, vegetables and herbs.

Long finish with round tannins and tangy raspberries.

This is a great experience. A delicious Merlot based Bordeaux blend from Saint Emilion. Not from the best vintage, but at this level of wine making, it is almost always gorgeous.

Feels young and would continue to age nicely in the next few decades.

Showing great complexity and mouthfeel. I loved the nose much better than the palate.

Robert Parker 93 points. Wine Spectator 93 points.

I had it after 6 hours of airtime. I really wanted to love it even more, but it is what it is. Got to keep it real.

A blend of 60% Merlot and 40% Cabernet Franc.

13.5% alcohol by volume.

93 points.

$700.
— 15 days ago

Ira, Andrew and 27 others liked this
"Odedi"

"Odedi" Influencer Badge

@Iwan thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated 🍷
Martijn

Martijn

“I am NOT drinking any F&:).! Merlot!” Having quoted that I love your series and descriptions! @"Odedi"
"Odedi"

"Odedi" Influencer Badge

@Martijn exactly 😂 And thanks for the kind words

Château Montrose

Saint-Estèphe Cabernet Sauvignon Blend 2012

Nose: Pronounced Aromas of Blackberries, Plums, Figs and Tobacco.

Palate: Dry. Medium Acidity. Medium Tannin. Medium to Full Body. Pronounced Flavour Intensity of Blackberries, Tobacco, Oak and Wet Stone. Long Finish.
— 8 days ago

Joseph, Eric and 8 others liked this

Château Joanin Bécot

Côtes de Castillon Red Bordeaux Blend 2015

It’s time for some Merlot on this #MerlotThursday.

Dark ruby in color with a reddish rim.

On the nose black plums, currants, oak, light vanilla, spices, dark chocolates, black pepper, herbs, tobacco leaf, earth and light forest floor.

Medium bodied with medium acidity.

Dry on the palate with currants, black plums, cherries, tobacco, oak, green vegetables, chocolates, earth, herbs and black pepper.

Medium on the finish with round tannins and tangy raspberries.

This is a tasty Merlot blend from Bordeaux. Showing nice complexity and mouthfeel.

I had this vintage a couple of years ago, and it is drinking much better now.

Good right out of the bottle, and better after 90 minutes of airtime.

A good food wine that I paired with cheeses and crackers.

A blend of 75% Merlot and 25% Cabernet Franc. Aged for 16 months in (60% new) French Oak barrels.

14.5% alcohol by volume.

91 points.

$30.
— 17 hours ago

Daniel, Daniel P. and 11 others liked this

Château Taillefer

Pomerol Red Bordeaux Blend 2018

Good Pomerol from one of the appellation’s largest estates, with around 12 hectares on the southern part of the plateau (in an area known for its iron-rich clay subsoils, known locally as “crasse de fer”). 81% Merlot and 19% Cabernet Franc, aged for 12 months in oak barrel. Aromas of dark fruit, plums, chocolate and earthy notes. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated. Noticeable tannins — 3 days ago