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Chateau Branaire Ducru 2011 Revisited

The following are the latest notes from William Kelley, who is now writing for Wine Advocate. He describes the 2011 Branaire-Ducru as an underrated wine that has matured past its initial austerity and offers exceptional enjoyment. Priced at $500 to $700 in the current Hong Kong market, this wine presents aromas of sweet cassis, earthy soil, cigar wrapper, and elegant new oak. It is medium to full-bodied, with layered and concentrated flavours balanced by powdery tannins and lively acidity. Despite initial doubts, in a blind tasting, it was mistaken for the estate's 2010 vintage. It is recommended for enjoyment between 2021 and 2045, receiving a rating of 92+ from RP.

Earning a rating of 94, Wine Enthusiast describes this as not just a good wine but one of the best from the chateau. It features a dense fruit profile, a robust and complex structure, blackberry and plum notes, a rich and generous character, and fine tannins. In 2018, Wine Enthusiast acknowledged its exceptional quality with the 94WE rating, testifying to its excellence and instilling confidence in its selection.

The French palate VindeVert awarded 94 points, inviting consumers to savour the wine's fruity and mineral nose with a deep concentration. It uncovers ripe strawberry and blackberry notes with hints of other black fruits, cornflower, and small blue fruits. The wine offers a harmonious balance of fruitiness, freshness, and minerality, with a precise and acidic frame. On the palate, it expresses fleshy blackberry and ripe wild raspberry notes and ripe small berries, dry violet, rose, and hints of minerality, mushroom, tobacco, and cardamom. The wine's elegant, well-built tannins contribute to its overall experience, confirming its outstanding taste and engaging qualities, earning a 94VertdeVin rating.

Falstaff awarded this wine 94 points, describing it as an intense ruby garnet with violet reflections and a delicate ocher rim. It exudes ripe plums, hints of herbs and spices, and a delicate animal scent. Medium-bodied, with subtle blackberry confit, integrated, spicy tannins, mineral notes, and a hint of sweet fruit on the finish. Its versatility as a food accompaniment, acknowledged by its 92Falstaff rating, promises to open up a world of culinary possibilities.


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