In case anyone’s interested, here are some tasting notes on some of what I’ve drunk so far (haters of the wanky, stop reading now):
2003 Leoville Barton is probably too young right now, but we had it in a demi, so it worked brilliantly: a perfect balance of fruit, alcohol, acid and tannins that was complex and concentrated, yet very easy to drink.
1999 Haut Claverie was a revelation. As a small Sauterne producer of little note one might wonder if it would hold up for eleven years, but it did so brilliantly. Honeyed succulence that matched the best of the appellation.
1999 Tour Blanche, also in demi, made for an interesting comparison with the Haut Claverie. Of course, TB is a premier grand cru classe so it was always going to have more depth, but even in the half it was still too young. Delicious, but with obvious indicators of greater heights to be climbed in the next 5-10 years.
2004 Confiance is Depardieu’s Bourg effort and like the man himself is a ballsy, gutsy, big fat bastard of a wine. Not a lot of subtlety, but worked well for what it was.
2004 Caillou Blanc du Chateau Talbot was excellent. I’m a big fan of the white wines produced by the Bordeaux big guns and, although this was nowhere near Margaux’s Pavilion Blanc, it still had enough understated complexity and concentration to stand up to Talbot’s wonderful reds. We also bought the 2007 but may give that a couple more years.
2004 Pavilion Rouge. This is Margaux’s second wine but it had all the hallmarks of delicate finesse for which its big sister is world-famous. We tried it alongside the Leoville Barton and it made a telling comparison between the St Julien and Margaux appellations that left us in no doubt as to just how different wines can be even when their terroirs are just a few miles apart.
Chateau Carbonnieux blanc 1999 is another white Bordeaux, this time from Pessac-Leognan and, like the Talbot, had a freshness and depth that left it with the delicacy of a Sauvignon Blanc (I fucking hate Sauvignon Blanc) but with the richness of a Chardonnay (I fucking love Chardonnay).
I hope that helps (smiley face made out of punctuation).