I sat this morning in my hotel in Bordeaux, Les Sources de Caudalie, and tasted a range of 1996 and 1995 reds. It was a perfect day for tasting. I was in a good mood. The weather was sunny and bright after three days of cold and very wet weather. And the wines were cool and decanted. They showed as they should…many fantastic wines.
It’s going to be a great tasting all week of 1996 and 1995 clarets….
Last night, I had dinner with Frederic Engerer, the president of Chateau Latour, and he admitted that he thought that his 1996 was starting to show a slightly herbal edge to it. “If we were as selective as we are today, I am sure we could have taken that out,” he admitted, thinking that perhaps one of the lots of Merlot included in the top wine was less than perfect. He thought that the 1995 might turn out to be the better wine in the long run. “It’s more classic, and it is very tight and structured at the moment,” he said. “We will see with time.”
I have had his 1996 twice in the last week. And it is showing wonderfully even though there could be a slightly herbal edge to the wine – just like most of the 1996s. But I am looking forward to re-visiting the wine this week! And all the rest!!
Engerer and I got into a conversation about who exactly bought the ultra-expensive 2005s. Were they Chinese? Were they Russians? Who were they? He said that he did some research with the negociants who he sold his futures to and the largest buyers were brokers in the United Kingdom. He didn’t really say what that meant. But to me, it means that a large part of his wines were bought for speculation. Most people buying top flight Bordeaux through UK brokers will keep their wines in-bond for later sale through brokers or auction houses. Few are drinkers.
I told Engerer that I didn’t think speculators were going to make a lot of money for a long time because prices were already too high when the wines were released. The bottom line is that there is very little upside left to these wines for the moment. I could be wrong. We will see in a few years when they come out in bottle.
They can always drink the wines! Engerer said that his 2005 Latour gets better and better as it ages in Latour’s cellar. I am sure he is right and I will let you know on Thursday when I visit the chateau to taste the wine again.
Dan Jaworek — Chicago — September 18, 2006 8:17am ET
Tristan Sjoberg — London — September 18, 2006 11:04am ET
Anthony Clapcich — September 18, 2006 2:20pm ET
Patrick Obrien — Hartford, CT — September 18, 2006 3:37pm ET
Glenn S Lucash — September 18, 2006 6:48pm ET
Don Ciaramella — September 22, 2006 7:52pm ET
Sips & Tips | Wine & Healthy Living
Video Theater | Collecting & Auctions