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The Cream of Bordeaux


Posted: Mar 19, 2006 1:50pm ET

I just arrived in Bordeaux a few hours ago. And as I was flying into the Mérignac airport from Nice and looking over the landscape of Bordeaux with thousands of acres of vineyards, I couldn’t help but think that most people in the world don’t give a damn about most of wines of the region. Those thousands of wine producers who make everyday Bordeaux have few followers. They make wine like others grow corn or wheat. It’s just a commodity.

What the world is interested in is the cream of Bordeaux. The 200 or 300 wineries that have a following around the world. That’s what I will be tasting beginning on Monday. And that's what most of you want to know about.

I am staying at the Sofitel, about 10 minutes from the airport, near where Vinexpo takes place every other year. I am here just tonight so I can go to a dinner at the house of Pierre Lawton, the well-known wine merchant in Bordeaux. Then tomorrow I drive up to the Médoc to start tasting. The first stop is Montrose. Robert Parker is in my hotel. He starts making his château calls tomorrow as well. He's going down to Graves.

This afternoon, I tasted about two dozen 2002 Sauternes. The vintage is not on the level of 2001 (view the full list of notes in our database) or 2003 (view the current tasting notes), but there are some very good to outstanding wines. The best I tasted were Yquem and Rieussec. Stay tuned for a small report with the tasting notes.

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