Supple and smooth, this is a distinctly pretty Graves rouge, with ripe Cabernet and Merlot fruit gracefully layered over soft tannins. The voluptuous style of the 2009 vintage really plays to its strengths, and combines nicely with the château's excellent Graves terroir. The owner is Michel Boyer, whose daughter Catherine d'Halluin also makes outstanding wine at Château Clos Bourbon in the Premières Côtes de Bordeaux.
Owner Eric Perrin, of Château Carbonnieux, working with star consultant Denis Dubourdieu of the University of Bordeaux, has produced an unusually ripe and powerful red Graves in 2009, with excellent structure. The blend is 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot and the wine displays pleasing aromas of super-ripe black fruit and blackcurrant flavor, nicely set off by subtle roasted notes of new oak.
Dubbed a "sleeper of the vintage" by Robert Parker, the 2009 Château L'Estang offers pure, nicely delineated flavors of red berry and cassis, gently layered over fine-grained tannins. Decidely stylish.
With vineyards located amidst the finest parcels of Chateau Margaux, cru bourgeois La Gurgue offers one of the purest expressions of Margaux terroir in the entire commune. Tasting the 2009 with its dynamic owner Claire Villars was one of the highlights of my recent visit to Bordeaux. The 2009 opens with a pure Margaux bouquet of violets, spring flowers and a hint of vanilla. It rolls over the palate with lush notes of fresh berries, cherries, and spice, and finishes with smooth, fine grained tannins. Quite expressive and utterly graceful.
--Ben Giliberti, CW Director of Wine Education