I tasted about 50 Right Bank wines from 2004 over Easter weekend. There are always more wines to taste, and I want to bring you the most up-to-date information I can on what’s out there in my designated areas for tasting. I think in the last three weeks I have tasted more than 1,100 wines. My tongue is still purple from tasting more than 500 barrel samples from 2006, and another 100 barrel samples from 2005.
I have been asked by a number of you where 2006 will fall compared to other recent vintages such as 2001 and 2004. I looked at the figures, and it’s tough to generalize. But I think that 2006 will be a better vintage overall than 2004 for the top estates. I don’t think it will reach the level of 2001, which is a sleeper vintage. There are many very good to outstanding quality 2001s out there, and they're at very reasonable prices in the U.S. market. You have to remember that they were bought with a very strong U.S. dollar. I think it was less than 1 euro to $1 U.S. then. What a shame it is not the same now. It’s over 1.30 euros to $1.
Europe is very expensive now ....
Anyway, a number of wine producers in Bordeaux emphasized that 2006 should not be compared to 2005. And it’s so, so obvious. I think that 2005 will be one of "the" great vintages. It is most likely better than 2000, and it is better than 2003. Is it better than 1990 or 1989? Wait and see. Is it the new 1961?
I am still thinking back to my two weeks in Bordeaux with the 2006 vintage, and tasting 50 or 60 barrel samples a day. It was a tough assignment, but a fascinating one. The vintage has many highlights, considering how difficult it was to tame Mother Nature. I gave 10 wines 95–100 points. Granted, I don’t think any will be 100-point wines. Nor will they be 98 or 99 points. But let’s wait and see how they evolve in barrel.
Another two dozen or so are 92–94 points, and just over 70 of them are 89–91. As I wrote in the past, winemakers in Bordeaux are some of the best in the world. They seem to be able to beat all the odds in making excellent wines in difficult vintages.
Jim Mcclure — DFW, Texas — April 9, 2007 1:03pm ET
James Burgunder — Rheinfelden — April 9, 2007 2:30pm ET
Guus Hateboer — Netherlands — April 9, 2007 2:54pm ET
Jim Mcclure — DFW, Texas — April 9, 2007 3:08pm ET
Robert Boyle — California — April 9, 2007 4:28pm ET
Brian Greenglass — Toronto, Canada — April 9, 2007 6:10pm ET
Karl Mark — Geneva, IL. — April 9, 2007 7:22pm ET
Boudaille — france — April 12, 2007 1:47am ET
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