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Echo de Lynch Bages 2012 and other wines

1. Echo de Lynch Bages 2012, Second Wine Pauillac

57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc - aged in last year's Lynch Bages barrels. Good black colour and good blueberry and blackcurrant fruit. Definite tannins, reasonably long. A decent second wine. JS90.


Aromas and flavors of tar, berries and dark chocolate. Full body, relatively firm tannins and a finish that fills the palate. Well done. Second wine of Lynch-Bages.


Classic, earthy Haut Medoc style with demur mixed black and red fruit. Cabernet, nicely balanced by Merlot, was not fully ripe but healthy. Mid-weight, structured claret. Even after almost 10 years, the structure (tannins and acid) is solid for a humble CB. A good food wine with strong mid palate. RP88, WS88.


This dark ruby/plum/purple-tinged sleeper of the vintage exhibits plenty of sweet black currant fruit intertwined with hints of incense and damp earth. Medium-bodied with plenty of juicy, savory fruit, soft tannin and decent acidity, it will drink well for 5-7 years.


This juicy red offers a plush texture, offering firm underlying tannins in a balanced package that delivers flavors of black cherry, blackberry and vanilla, accented with malt and cream. Exuberant.

3. Chateau de Fonbel 2006, St. Emilion Grand Cru

Red currant, blackberry jam and a hint of polished leather, giving this wine all the vivacity of the 2006 vintage. It has a lovely lightness of touch and certain rigidity peculiar to vintage 2006, with its final note one of delicious juiciness. This wine is drinking well now and we believe will remain full of charm for the next few years. Made by the Ausone Team. A good food wine with strong mid palate. JS90.


Excellent color for the vintage. Blackberry, blueberry and raspberry pie aromas in this. Full and velvety with lovely fruit. A little one-dimensional, but it's focused and the fruit is ripe. Give it two to three years of bottle age. Better in 2014.

4. Chateau Cantermerle 2012, Haut Medoc 5th

The fruit is ripe (cherries, raspberry, blackcurrants). An elegant wine (medium bodied, almost with a St. Julien feel (lavender, fine tannins and fruity finish). At least 4 to 5 more years. JS92, RP91.


This red shows some cassis, blueberries and floral notes on the nose. Some tar, too. Medium to full body, juicy tannins and a fruity finish. Enticing wine. Drink now or hold.

February 2015


Cantemerle's ethereal elegance and racy, classy style are unmistakable in this understated yet pretty, dark ruby-colored 2012. Offering lots of cherry, raspberry and black currant fruit, this is a wine of unmistakable finesse and delicacy. Enjoy it over the next 10-12 years.

Wine Advocate (206), April 2013

5.Chateau Lafon Rochet 2008, St Estephe 5th

Not the classic style of St Estephe. It is a blend of 31% Merlot, 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot, and as righly put by neal Martin, this Lafon-Rochet 2008 displays moderate intensity on the nose: blackberry, blueberry and a touch of cassis. It could do with being a degree less macerated. The palate is full-bodied with saturated, chewy tannins, dense black fruits, hints of boysenberry, cedar and a touch of pepper. A very slick smooth finish that just needs a little more reserve. Needs some more bottle age. WE90.


Dark tannins provide the structured for the Cabernet Sauvignon black currant flavors. It has power—this is a big and solid wine, given tension by tannins, that will take several years to soften out.

6. Chateau Beychevelle 2010, St Julien 4th

Potential not fully realized. We feel this wine is slightly better than 2009, if power and structure is what you are after. Impressive. JS95, RP94, WE94.


Beautiful aromas of blackberries, currants and flowers. Very aromatic. Full body, with ultra-fine tannins and gorgeous fruit. It's polished and very refined. One of the best Beychevelles in years. Try in 2018.


Showing better from bottle than it did from barrel, where it was also impressive, but not quite at this level, the 2010 Beychevelle displays sweet black currant, black cherry, foresty notes, medium to full-bodied texture with impressive purity and moderately high tannins (although they've softened considerably during the wine's upbringing in barrel). Layered and rich for a Beychevelle, this wine should easily withstand three decades of cellaring. I would give it another 3-4 years of bottle age, but this is a fabulous effort from the first chateau one sees upon entering the appellation of St.-Julien.


A strongly tannic wine, powered by a dry core that pushes through the sweet fruit. Great weight as well as tension between the acidity and the dark heart of the wine.

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