February 28, 2013

UGC 2010 tasting

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The night before Robert Parker released his updated scores on the 2010 vintage tasted from bottle, the Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux - in conjunction with Watson's Wines - hosted a tasting of the same vintage.  2010 was the younger of the twin blockbuster vintages of 2009/10, and en primeur prices for the vintage undoubtedly shattered some records.  I haven't had the pleasure of tasting many wines from this vintage, so I was really looking forward to this event.  In retrospect, I shouldn't have been surprised by how quickly tickets to this event sold out.  I actually had to pull some strings (thanks to the Specialist) to get myself a precious ticket…

I actually arrived a few minutes before the official starting time of 6pm, and there was already a big crowd waiting to get in.  I guess everyone wanted to come early and make sure they don't miss anything!

I had a wine dinner to go to after the tasting, so I was rushing to taste as many of these wines as I could within a limited time. That means I didn't really have time to delve deep into each wine, but rather just scratching the surface of each. I went through 31 wines in about 1½ hours, which I thought wasn't bad…

2010 Lascombes - cedar, wood, a hint of smoke, prunes.

2010 Giscours - more fragrant and open, nose of saddle, smoke, earth, and almost floral. Nice.

2010 Brane-Cantenac - nose was open, more acidity here, with dried herbs and fragrant on the edges.  Henri Lurton was here again.

2010 Angludet - alcoholic, more pungent, fruity with some dried herbs.

2010 La Lagune - more smoke here, with lead pencil and a rounded palate.

2010 Pichon-Lalande - sweet nose with exotic coconut butter, vanilla and cedar.

2010 Grand-Puy-Lacoste - lots of mint, smoke, lovely, fragrant and open. A classic Pauillac. Emeline Borie poured the wine.

2010 d'Armailhac - ripe and sweet fruit, smoke,wood.

2010 Clerc-Milon - wood, smoke and mint. OK.

2010 Talbot - a little funky, leather and herbs.

2010 Léoville-Poyferré - wood, smoke and a little earth.

2010 Langoa Barton - coconut, vanilla and cedar.

2010 Léoville Barton - cedar, perfumed, sweet with vanilla. Not bad.

2010 Branaire-Ducru - smoky with dried herbs.  Disappointing.  Patrick Maroteaux was here.

2010 Gruaud-Larose - earthy, heavy and pungent, smoky.

2010 Bon Pasteur - sweet, almost orange and tangerine, and perhaps some tea leaves.

2010 Gazin - minty, smoky with some wood.

2010 Clinet - soft, fragrant with spices, sweet.

2010 Troplong Mondot - open and fragrant nose with cedar and smoke.

2010 Latour-Martillac Blanc - pipi de chat front and center, muscat, lemon. Very nice. Medium acidity.

2010 Malartic-Lagravière Blanc - more butter and less pipi here, oaky, lemon, ripe on the palate with good acidity balance.

2010 Pape Clément Blanc - tropical fruit, almost like my favorite Balinese passion fruit, star fruit, a little bit of pipi.  Ripe palate.  Beautiful wine.

2010 Smith-Haut-Lafitte Blanc - ripe nose with pipi de chat.  Nice.

2010 Larrivet Haut-Brion Blanc - lemon and passion fruit.  Bruno Lemoine poured the wines.

2010 Domaine de Chevalier Blanc - ripe, pineapple and apricot.  Also notes of cheese, like Comté.

2010 Haut-Bailley - open nose with cedar.  Véronique Sanders was here.

2010 Guiraud - orange blossoms, honey, acetone, apricot.  Some acidity here.

2010 Doisy-Daëne - more acetone, a bit pungent, honey and apricot.

2010 de Fargues - marzipan, orange, honey and a little acetone.

2010 Coutet - orange, sweet, honey, fragrant, almost floral.

2010 Climens - orange, marmalade, really sweet and unctuous.

For reds I liked Pichon-Lalande, Grand-Puy-Lacoste, Léoville Barton, Clinet and Troplong Mondot.  Whites I liked Latour-Martillac, Malartic-Lagravière and Pape Clément best.  For sweet wines it had to be Guiraud, Coutet and Climens.

Needless to say I was already pretty buzzed when I went off to dinner, to drink more wine!

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