|Varietal||Cab Merlot Cab Franc|
"“Margaux is certainly the most stylish and sophisticated of the First Growths.” Farr Vintners“Ch. Margaux 2000 and 2005 are some of the greatest barrel samples I have ever tried, and the 2010 is up there again, matching the incredible Ch. Latour as wine of the vintage.” Berry Brothers 96-98 Robert Parker 96-99 Wine Spectator 100 James Suckling 97-99 Neal Martin 97-99 Jeannie Cho Lee MW 96-100 Derek Smedley MW 100 Tim Atkin MW19 Jancis Robinson MW20 Stephen Spurrier, Decanter “Paul Pontallier was rattling off some interesting statistics about Chateau Margaux. The 2000 (a great, great wine) was 13.1% natural alcohol, the 2005 13.1%, the 2009 13.2%, and the 2010, the highest ever measured, 13.5%. That is still nearly one degree less than the Pauillac first-growth of Chateau Latour at 14.4%. This blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc (representing only 38% of the total production) has the classic, quintessential Margaux character of spring flowers, almost cool-climate precision, medium body, and a seamless integration of tannin, wood and alcohol. The blue and black fruit characteristics are present, and the wine restrained. The most measured and polished of all the first growths I tasted, it is also less concentrated than any of the other first growths, but the elegance is classic. The harvest finished on October 15, which was not their latest by any means. This is one of the few first growths of 2010 where the tannins are remarkably delicate and sweet, and the softness of this wine will provide magical drinking at a relatively early age, yet its balance and concentration will carry it for 20 or more years.” Robert ParkerChâteau Margaux, a 1er Cru Classé property, has been owned by the Mentzelopoulos family since 1978 - since then it has consistently produced the finest wines in the Médoc. One of the grandest, most imposing buildings amongst the Médoc châteaux, Ch. Margaux in its current form was built in the early 19th century, although viticulture had been practised on the estate for several centuries before. A chequered period of ownership in the 19th and early 20th century meant that the quality of some Margaux vintages was patchy, but the change which restored the property to its rightful status came in 1977 when it was bought by André Mentzenopoulos, Greek by birth but who had lived in France since 1958 and had made a fortune through supermarket retailing. André immediately instigated much needed investment in vineyard and cellar, but his untimely death in 1980 saw his daughter, Corinne, take up the reins. Corinne’s shrewdest move was the recruitment of young, talented winemaker Paul Pontallier to oversee the production. Paul remains at the helm nearly 30 years later and in that time Margaux has produced some legendary wines, but also displays a marvellous seam of consistency through good years and the not so good.The estate has 82 hectares under vine, with Cabernet Sauvignon inevitably dominant (75%) with Merlot making up most of the rest (20%), along with a smattering of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Unusually in Margaux, there is a white wine made here, Pavillon Blanc, from 100% Sauvignon Blanc, while the two red wines are, of course, Ch. Margaux itself and Pavillon Rouge. Typically, about 30,000 cases of red wine are made, with the Grand Vin usually accounting for just over 40% of the total. Production of the white wine amounts to less than 3,000 cases. Fermentation takes place in oak vats, and ageing for Ch. Margaux in 100% new barrels for 22 months. It is Paul Pontallier’s firmly held belief that it is the Cabernet Sauvignon grape which is responsible for most of the sheer class which characterises the wines of Ch. Margaux and we are seeing, in consequence, an ever greater percentage of this varietal in the blend of the Grand Vin."
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