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Tasting report: Bordeaux 2000

A review of 2000 Bordeaux with the Jeroboam Club tasting group in Bristol:

Chateau Roc de Cambes 2000: 

Absolutely on a knife edge and, in that, absolutely classic Mitjavile.  Has the self-consciously sexy and flamboyant mocha, toast and ferous / bloody element.  Really flirts with volatility but just pulls it off.  Close to full maturity on the palate and starting to feel a touch dry on the finish, although you’d unlikely notice that with food.  The finish pulls up a touch short but there’s plenty of pleasure in the middle. 92/100

Chateau Latour a Pomerol 2000: 

Aromas have elements of brett that seem to accelerate in the glass.  Has cool and silky qualities on the palate that is savoury and elegant.  Sweet berry fruit but the brett is persistent.  There are insistent leathery characters and the taint dries the finish a touch.  Many would love this as old school. 90/100

Chateau Branon 2000

Smart, very Modern (with a capital M), glossy and a touch inky.  All in the up-front punch but the acid is fundamentally low and it drops away quite fast.  What’s there is sweet and generous but this doesn’t follow through and the initially glossy berry fruit becomes quite pinched on the finish.  All that said, it’s aged quite well and isn’t falling apart as terminally as might have been expected from this garage cuvee at 20+ years old. 88/100

Chateau Palmer 2000

A step change: the first 2000 that’s not ready to drink and a subtle, insistent and compact profile that’s totally different from everything before it.  Very sleek and taut.  Red fruit with some precision and fragrance.  The mid-palate introduces elements of fluidity and delicacy – lacy texture.  Still has lots of potential and feels reluctant to open up at this point. 94/100

Cos d’Estournel 2000

Very classic, fragrant and pure.  Out-Palmers Palmer in terms of being more expressive, graceful and forward.  Charming, in a way I don’t expect Cos to charm.  It’s more ready to drink than Palmer but still has masses in the tank still.  Cassis, fresh tobacco and cedar.  Everything is extremely fresh and beautifully proportioned.  Classy. 94/100

Chateau Montrose 2000

Looks incredibly youthful still.  Very lively, fresh and hugely spicy.  Has an edginess and drive that suggests a more primary style than most of the others to this point.  The tannins have largely melted but there’s still plenty of structure and definition.  The spice starts to soar on the mid-palate yet the overall profile remains compact and slightly corsetted by its structure. 96/100

Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou 2000

Classically flamboyant Ducru nose of spice, mocha, fruit and leather that, at first, presents as brett but then cleans up and becomes more of a mature characteristic.  Mid-palate spice and blackcurrant fruit is really impressive but it loses some steam towards the finish.  The energy just isn’t quite sustained.  Really stunning in the attack though.  Pretty much ready.  By the end of the evening it seemed to be drooping a little and I might have over-scored this. 94/100

Chateau Leoville Las Cases 2000

Takes everything to a new level in terms of precision, detail and clarity of fruit.  Is fresh-sliced in its purity and freshness.  Beautifully seasoned with notes of pepper and spice.  The tannins are mouth-cleansing and refreshing and the acidity is pitch-perfect.  Long, fine-grained and juicy.  I don’t even like LLC! 98/100

Chateau Grand Puy Lacoste 2000

Quite tight but there’s fragrant blackcurrant fruit at the core that expands to a juicy and mouthwatering cassis profile on the palate.  Compact, crisply defined and rippling with energy.  Taut, muscled and mineral – almost certainly out-performing the Ducru that would also have been made by Xavier Borie at this time.  Extremely classy with a long, reverberating finish. 95/100

Chateau Lynch Bages 2000

Plays entirely on the spices – piling, gripping and captivating – but the back end of the palate doesn’t quite have the same degree of intrigue, subtance and guts.  Some tobacco and mint in the middle.  Not quite the flamboyance and impact of the top vintages.  Perhaps the slightest of caramel influence from the oak. 92/100

Chateau Pichon Baron 2000

In a parallel with the Ducru / GPL pair, J-M Cazes of Lynch would also have made this wine in 2000.  Scented and surprisingly gentle and complex in its perfume.  Very pretty and very Pauillac, If not very assertive.  Sweet blackcurrant and pencil shavings.  Pretty mature.  Fine boned and in a distinctly different style to more recent vintages that show much more minerality, muscle and power / drive.   93/100

Chateau Pichon Lalande 2000

Gloriously old school Pichon Lalande in its green tobacco and herbaceous notes but totally ripe, fresh and expressive.  Superb.  Elegant and frangrant, with notes of leafy Merlot and fragrant Petit Verdot.  Fine-textured and silky.  Other tasters found this under-ripe and pedestrian but I maintain they’re all wrong! 96/100

-Matthew Hemming

This is a Test 2