The 2012 Durfort Vivens gives full spectrum of cru level of nose. White lilac, violets, roses, ripe yellow plums, red cherries and red currants, sweet spices, cigar box, tobacco and minerality. Its clean, fresh palate reflects the nose and gives dimensional balance, harmony, elegance and finesse.
Composition for this 2012 vintage is 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot and 6% Cabernet Franc, so by design, this bottle is not for complex drinking. Manual harvest, fermentation in batches (partial wood and partial concrete; malo in vat; ageing in 40% new French oak), very high vine density(7000 vines per hectare is the highest in Commune of Margaux, even compare to Chateau Margaux next door). ) point to a the making of stylisticallyripe and concentrated wine.
Durfort Vivens is the best valued Margaux Cru. Let’s not forget that it is a Second Growth from true Margaux appellation (Commune of Margaux!) next to Chateau Margaux. Thomas Jefferson singled out Durfort Vivens as the head of the Second Cru., a position which was confirmed by the 1855 Classification. The 1855 Classification also opined that Chateau Durfort Vivens ranks ‘not too behind and close’ to Chateau Margaux.
Durfort Vivens has always been fetching a very low market (of course this is a good thing to most consumers, isn’t it?), but it is improving fast and consistent after vintage 2009. So we look forward to see more friends coming to like this wine which deserves for that.
Earlier owners from 1960's to 1980's was not able to gear this wine up with the contemporary style is one of the reason why this wine is not famous as it should. The combined estates of Margaux and Durfort Vivens in the past had created a certain ambiguity harmful to the latter which was dubbed “second wine of Chateau Margaux” and not Second Cru of Margaux was probably another reaason. Lucien Lurton, also of Brane Cantenac, had parcels of the best land which belong to Durfort Vivens added to its detriment.
Superficially innocuous, the nuance was poignant and keenly felt.