“Tasting Chateau Margaux 16 Ways”: An Excellent Post on Dr Vino’s Blog

StefanoJust a very quick note to give heads up to our wine enthusiast readers as to an in my view excellent post that got published yesterday in Tyler Colman’s wonderful wine blog, Dr Vino.

In the post, Tyler gives a full account of a one-of-a-kind wine tasting experience he had the good fortune to attend where Paul Pontallier (the man who has been the managing director and winemaker at Chateau Margaux for the last 30 years) led selected few to taste the base wines of the various grape varieties (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot) that will create Chateau Margaux’s 2012 Grand Vin, pre-blending, as well as samples from the Chateau’s organic, biodynamic, and conventional test vineyards and more samples illustrating the Chateau’s experimentation with, and position on, wine fining, filtration and closure (with a very interesting perspective about the debate among cork, screwcaps and synthetic closures, especially from a Premier Cru maker’s standpoint).

As you may know, Chateau Margaux is one of the five Premiers Grands Crus Classés wines that rank at the top of the 1855 classification of the best Bordeaux wines from the West Bank that was ordered by Emperor Napoleon III of France in view of the then forthcoming Second Universal Exhibition in Paris, which still stands almost unmodified as of today (the only change in the top ranking being the addition of Chateau Mouton-Rothschild in 1973 as the fifth Premier Cru).

By the way, if you are interested and want to know more about the fascinating history behind the 1855 classification of the Grands Crus Classés of the West Bank region of Bordeaux, I suggest you check out the excellent Official Web site of the Grands Crus Classés in 1855 and download their “History of the Classification” PDF file: it is definitely worth reading!

I found the post extremely interesting, educational and enriching, and I wholeheartedly recommend that you check out the full account on Dr Vino’s blog.

Enjoy the read!

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About Stefano

I am a photographer and an ISA certified sommelier. I contribute to two blogs, Flora's Table (the fine cooking and wine blog - www.florastable.com) and Clicks & Corks (my photography and wine blog - www.clicksandcorks.com). My photography Web site is at www.StefanoCrosio.com
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12 Responses to “Tasting Chateau Margaux 16 Ways”: An Excellent Post on Dr Vino’s Blog

  1. Thanks for sharing this post, Stefano! Very interesting read :)
    You always provide us with good articles.

  2. The question of screw top, cork or synthetic cork, I was glad to see that the synthetic didn’t come out well, as I am not a big fan.

    • Stefano says:

      I hear you, Maria. When I think of great wines, psychologically I still cannot conceive any closure other than a real cork. This is both because of its aesthetics, tradition and effectiveness (generally speaking) as an air proof closure. However, if one were to think about it rationally, different type of closures would remove the risk of corking altogether and are probably at least as effective as real cork. The point is that, as Mr Pontallier alluded to, nobody knows yet how, for instance, a screw cap would perform 20 years from now, if one were used to close a bottle of wine that may be left aging for a long time. For certain, I know that for regular white wines I would very much favor the use of glass lids, which are very elegant and effective, albeit quite costly…

      • vinoinlove says:

        Have you ever tried wines with a glass top? Glass is neutral in taste and allows long aging. Only downside is the relatively high production cost compared to real cork. My experience with glass tops has been excellent so far.

      • Stefano says:

        Hi Julian,
        Yes, I agree with you – as I mentioned in reply to an earlier comment from Maria: “For certain, I know that for regular white wines I would very much favor the use of glass lids, which are very elegant and effective, albeit quite costly…” So far, the only wine I have had that came with a glass lid was from Puiatti (I think it was a Ribolla).
        As to reds that are meant for long aging or specialty whites such as a Sauternes, I think that I would share the same concerns that Mr Pontallier expressed, meaning who knows how the o-ring in that glass lid would perform say 20 years from now… I guess only time and more experimentation will tell!
        Take care

  3. Dina says:

    Thanks for pointing out the article, it was a good read!
    Best regards
    Dina

  4. Stefano, would you be interested in doing a guest post on my blog, I will make a meal and you do the wine pairing? I thought it would be interesting and informative for my readers. I am thinking of making a simple paella, just chicken and sausage. Let me know if you would be interested.

    • Stefano says:

      Suzanne, many thanks for your kind offer – of course I would be delighted to do a guest post on your blog!
      Feel free to email me at Stefano[at]florastable.com with any details re proposed timing of the post and recipe so we can set things up.
      Thanks again :-)

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