Wednesday, 16 September 2015

HV Wines: Château la Rose Vosel Lalande de Pomerol Bordeaux 2013

In my encounter with Lidl wine deal, of which I spoke about in my previous blog, today we arrive on the other side of the Bordeaux region, the right-bank of the wine region just next to Pomerol, the satellite of Lalande Pomerol.

Since recent more and more attention is turned towards the satellite regions of Pomerol and Saint -Emilion, because they give the alternative to the now high priced (well for most of them) Pomerols and Saint-Emilions. Also much improvement has been made to produce wines from much better and higher quality and prices that are well set in line of reason. If it will stay that way is of course anyone's question..... So what about Lalande de Pomerol?

Lalande de Pomerol
Wine culture in Lalande de Pomerol has sprouted since the 12th Century. Aquitaine then was a province of England since the marriage of the Duchess Alienor with Henri of Plantagenet, but the river Barbanne en the hills of Lalande de Pomerol marked the limit with the Kingdom of France. The military and religious order of the Hospitaliers de Saint Jean de Jerusalem, who became later the Order of Malta, install a commandery at Lalande de Pomerol, and from this day a practise of viticulture saw transforming the terroir forever.
Lalande de Pomerol has a surface of 1150 hectares of vines, based on alluvial terraces. Below finds an ancient seabed forming a plateau of limestone, a virgin territory cutting since three millions years several rivers still visible today. These waters have creates pebbles, gravel, rocks throughout the centuries, making up the character of the regions terroir.

The wines from Lalande de Pomerol have really start to see a commercial interest since the years 2000, it is obvious that this region has been nourishing the culture of wine making for a very long time and more and more as with Montagne Saint Emilion these two region begin really to rise to the surface with wine of very great quality.
The Merlot grape is the grape that produced the best quality wine at Lalande de Pomerol, followed by Cabernet franc, Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Lalande de Pomerol produces on average a year 525,000 cases, close to 200 Chateaux are active in Lalande de Pomerol.

Chateau la Rose Vosel Lalande de Pomerol 2013

Grape: Merlot,Cabernet-Sauvignon, Cabernet franc.

Price: €14 $15 £10

Visual: Ruby red colour, very good limpidity, good brilliance, intense and refined, a certain regard of elegance, young with a degree of maturity.

Nose: Red fruits, raisins, currants, flowers lilac, rose, acacia, after a while the smell of ethanol appears.

Palate: spices (not entirely clean), red fruits (currants and berries), heat, acidity fair, medium body, little tannins, on the back of the palate some astringents.

Conclusion: Totally different to what I was expecting ( a wine with average directions), also for its price this stands good and fair, the wine is produced on a correct level but could give more precision. Little of the terroir is noticeable but more of an overall style Bordeaux wine, there are elements of identity as the Merlot grape indicates that this is more of a right bank then a left bank wine but then that is where it stops. So I hope that they are working their way up to produce an even better wine in the future as the quality is definitely available. This is not a bad wine, for an every day wine on the table, is it surely of high standard. I was hoping to get a bit more refinement and precise identity.

Score: 18/20 80/100 (rated as a good wine)

Until next time please do drink responsibly.

Friday, 11 September 2015

HV Wines: Château du Grand Soussans Margaux 2011

It has been a long time since I ventured through the aisles of supermarkets. After all they are the biggest source of wine distribution anywhere on this planet, of course very few of them do represent the top tier of the wine world, but then how do you define a top tier wine? In many cases the price will be a good indicator, and today more then ever, those high priced wines are in most cases a touch of a dream.
When over a week ago I received advertising in the mail box, and from Lidl in particularly as there was a autumn promotion on wines. 3 wines jumped to my attention, so the first one I want to test out is the Chateau du Grand Soussans Margaux 2011.

The appellation Margaux.

Margaux is one of the prestigious appellations in the Left-bank group, it is also the only appellation where a Chateau carries also the name of the appellation and is feminine. The appellation Margaux exist for about 2000 years as there is evidence of the Romans planting vines, also the appellation was the first in line of all the left-bank appellations. It is as well the first appellation you will encounter when you drive up from Bordeaux into the Medoc. The name Margaux seems to come from the poet Ausonious naming it Marojallia, but it came to real fame in the 1700, when Thomas Jefferson, (third president of the United states) visited the region and Chateau Margaux itself. The appellation Margaux contains about 1413 hectares of vineyards, which is the second biggest appellation in the Haut-Medoc.
It holds 20 Grand Crus classes, under which the very famous Chateau Margaux 1st growth and Chateau Palmer 3rd growth (although it deserves better). The appellation stretches out onto 5 towns, Margaux, Soussan, Arsac, Labarde and Cantenac. The terroir of Margaux is characterized by successive quaternary fluvial deposits, resting on a predominant limestone bedrock. Parcels of land leading towards rivers holds much gravel stone, giving great variety to the wines of this appellation.

Margaux is the warmest appellation in the left-bank, thus it is almost always the first to harvest. Cabernet-Sauvignon is the most planted grape in Margaux followed by Merlot, Cabernet franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Carmenere. The wines from Margaux are amongst the most flower scented in Bordeaux, violet is often much present in the wines. Margaux has the most diverse terroir and soils types in Bordeaux, ranging from large deposits of gravel, limestone with pebble stone and rocks to clay.

Today about 80 different Chateaux's maintain vineyards in the appellation Margaux, close to 600,000 cases of wine are produced every year.
Margaux counts, 1, first growth, 5, second growths, 10, third growths and 4, fourth growths.

Margaux's best vintages: 1945,1953,1959,1961,1983,1996,2000,2005,2009 and2010.

Chateau du Grand Soussans Margaux 2011.

Appellations: Margaux AOC

Grapes: 65% Cabernet-Sauvignon, 30 % Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot

Price: €21 $23 £15

Visual: Ruby red colour, masculine, deep, rich, opulent, good limpidity, fair brilliance, inviting, although shines a bit roughness as if badly shaven.

Nose:  Eucalyptus, berries (black and blue berries), little hints of castor, old oak, little juniper, flowers but faint not clear, green sweet pepper, dried tobacco.

Palate: At first little watery but then the weight of the wine enters, soft round tannins, medium body, red/black fruits, little acidity, aromas fairly weak,, hits of spices, medium length.

Conclusion: Although this is a not very well known Margaux, for the price I paid in Lidl (€13.99), it was surely a bargain (maybe a way to attract different customers as this is not really a wine you would find there), it is also a wine that is totally ready to drink now and next year. It is pleasant and enjoyable, will it stick into remembrance maybe.......it is a classic wine and rightfully made. Maybe with some fresh oak it might spice up and give the wine a bit more credit. Also the aromas are not clear and are hiding too much behind each other. It is all together a decent wine.

Score: 17.9/20 79/100 (rated as a good wine)

Until next time please do drink responsibly.