En Primeur Bordeaux 2014

The wines with tasting notes

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[Add to shopping basket] Batailley Pauillac £234 - 89-91 - 92-93 16 - -
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The Château Batailley 2014, which Frédéric Castèja served before the Lynch Moussas instead of after, is a blend of 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot and 1% Cabernet Franc matured in 55% new oak. He told me that hail in July touched the Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot vines and decreased the yield to 33 hectoliters per hectare. It underwent a slow pumping-over and a warm maceration. It has a well defined and fresh bouquet, perhaps a little foursquare compared to recent vintages, light pencil shaving notes developing with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied is with rigid, unwavering tannin: masculine in style with a foursquare cedar and mint-tinged finish. This is a fine Batailley though not quite in the same class as some of their impressive recent vintages. The fast-improving Lynch Moussas might have the upper hand this year.

Score: 89 - 91 Neal Martin, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2018-2035

A big and juicy red with blueberry, cassis and chocolate character. Full and velvety with lovely purity. Wonderful ripeness of tannin. Cabernet sauvignon here.

Score: 92 - 93 James Suckling, Jamessuckling.com

Dark crimson. Attractively intense pencil-shavings and graphite nose. Sweet start and has less concentration than some. A relatively early-maturing Pauillac. There is some tannins but not in huge register. Falls away rather on the finish.

Score: 16 JancisRobinson.com, Jancisrobinson.com Maturity: 2020-2030

[Add to shopping basket] Beaumont Haut Medoc £80 - 88-90 - 90-91 16 - 86-88
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The Château Beaumont 2014 has a slightly pinched nose at first, but there are appreciable dense blackberry and raspberry aromas interwoven with cedary new oak that surface with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with good weight in the mouth. It is not a complex Haut-Médoc but it dishes out freshness and crisp acidity, flavoursome and savory black fruit fanning out nicely on the finish. "Good Claret" - as they say.

Score: 88 - 90 Neal Martin, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2017-2029

Deep colour with a classic nose of juicy blackberry fruit and cigar box continuing onto the palate. Soft black fruit, a hint of spice and a strictness to the structure making this a traditionally-styled claret.

Score: - Albany Vintners

A solid wine with tar, dark chocolate and berry character. Full and chewy. Impressive.

Score: 90 - 91 James Suckling, Jamessuckling.com

Pretty dark purplish crimson. Broad, luscious nose. Energetic and well balanced even if only medium weight and medium ambition. Easy to like with attractive fairly open fruit, even if hardly complex or long term. Drying finish with grainy, sandy tannins.

Score: 16 JancisRobinson.com, Jancisrobinson.com Maturity: 2018-2026

The 2014 Beaumont shows good textural depth and body, but comes across as a bit green and lacking in polish, with slightly angular contours that attentuate the fruit. Savory herbs, smoke, licorice and tobacco notes add a bit of complexity, but the rough edges are impossible to escape.

Score: 86 - 88 Antonio Galloni, www.vinousmedia.com

[Add to shopping basket] Beausejour Duffau St Emilion £525 - 90-92 - 93-94 - 93-96 94-97
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The Château Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse 2014 is a blend of 95% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc cropped at 39 hectoliters per hectare picked from 6 until 15 October. It represents 56% of the total production this year. Matured in 55% new oak, it actually has quite a laid-back, lighter bouquet than I was expecting, especially compared to the Pavie-Macquin '14. Giving it 5 minutes to open, it develops greater fruit intensity thanks to scents of macerated black cherries, dark plum and allspice. The palate is medium-bodied on the entry, bridled with marmalade and white pepper notes intermixed with the lush red fruit. There is impressive tension and weight here, an appetizing crescendo of flavors and a twist of bitter cherry on the finish. There is a feral element that keeps drawing you back to this complex Saint Emilion that may warrant a higher score after bottling.

Score: 90 - 92 Neal Martin, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2020-2038

A wonderful finish to this wine with a full body. Compacted and tight with beautiful ripe fruit and mineral undertones. Some walnut character too.

Score: 93 - 94 James Suckling, Jamessuckling.com

Juicy and dense, with lots of blueberry, dark plum and blackberry fruit, studded with anise and backed by a lightly brambly finish. Hedonistic and engaging, this should be fun to watch fill out fully.

Score: 93 - 96 James Molesworth, Wine Spectator

Power and finesse collide in the 2014 Beauséjour Héritiers Duffau-Lagarrosse, a breathtaking, vertical wine that hits all the right notes. Sweet black cherries, smoke, licorice and tar are some of the many notes that flesh out. The 2014 is quite dark and brooding in personality. I imagine the 2014 will drink beautifully for decades, although it is also going to need quite a bit of time to fully come together. There is so much to like here. Tiny yields in the Cabernet Franc resulted in a Beauséjour with more Merlot than is the norm. The 2014 is magnificent. It's as simple as that. In 2014, the blend is 95% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc, all brought in between October 6 and 15.

Score: 94 - 97 Antonio Galloni, www.vinousmedia.com

[Add to shopping basket] Belair Monange St Emilion £790 - 89-91 - 93-94 17-18 94-97 93-96
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The Château Belair-Monange 2014 has a surprisingly "outgoing" bouquet that is determined to make an impression: blackcurrant pastilles intermingling with truffle and iodine scents. The palate is medium-bodied and linear, underpinned by strict, slightly rigid tannins that lend this a masculine personality. It has a slight bitter note on the finish but a satisfying long, peppery aftertaste following suit. It is just missing a little substance and flair. Not a bad Belair-Monange by a long chalk, though I might actually have a preference for the 2012.

Score: 89 - 91 Neal Martin, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2018-2030

Lots of mineral, chalk and salt character with dark fruits. Full and powerful with firm tannins and a long finish. Compacted and tight with wonderful density and intensity.

Score: 93 - 94 James Suckling, Jamessuckling.com

Thick and dense and very rich and opulent. Sweet and beguiling and round and velvety. Layers and confidence. Gorgeous stuff, with opulent scents and a great spread over the palate. Impressive!

Score: 17 - 18 JancisRobinson.com, Jancisrobinson.com Maturity: 2024-2040

A beauty in the making, with gorgeously pure red currant and raspberry fruit, laced with bergamot and incense accents. A very fine chalky thread knits everything beautifully. Shows pristine balance and gorgeous minerality. Tasted non-blind.

Score: 94 - 97 James Molesworth, Wine Spectator

One of the highlights of the vintage, the 2014 Bélair-Monange hits the palate with serious depth, palpable energy and huge, imposing tannins. All the elements come together in a dark, sumptuous wine that brings together deep layers of fruit along with beams of precise, salivating minerality. Sweet floral and spice notes add lift on the close, but above all else the 2014 is a wine of power. The fresh, invigorating finish encapsulates the essence of the vintage. Since 2012, Bélair-Monange has been made from three parcels on gravel, clay and limestone. It is that very intersection that yields one of the most distinctive wines in St.-Emilion. Two thousand fourteen is also the first vintage that includes fruit from the replanting done on the plateau. I tasted the Bélair-Monange last in my survey of the Moueix family's 2014s, after Trotanoy and La Fléur-Petrus, and it more than held its own.

Score: 93 - 96 Antonio Galloni, www.vinousmedia.com

[Add to shopping basket] Belgrave Haut Medoc £145 - 88-90 - 91-92 16 89-92 89-92
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The Château Belgrave 2014 has a boatload of blackberry and wild strawberry fruit on the nose, the oak a little prominent at the moment, but it is well defined. The palate is quite powerful with thickset tannin, good acidity, lightly spiced with a mouthcoating, lightly spiced finish. It is a bit bold 'n' brassy…but I like that.

Score: 88 - 90 Neal Martin, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2018-2030

Full and very chewy. A powerful and rich sample. Best ever?

Score: 91 - 92 James Suckling, Jamessuckling.com

Very dark purple. Savoury, meaty with just enough flesh and a very firm, almost astringent texture. Pretty severe.

Score: 16 JancisRobinson.com, Jancisrobinson.com Maturity: 2020-2027

The dark plum and currant fruit is pushed by a strong tobacco note, along with accents of charcoal and grilled savory. Shows good heft through the finish without sacrificing definition.

Score: 89 - 92 James Molesworth, Wine Spectator

The 2014 is dark, juicy and powerful. Intense savory notes open into black cherry, tobacco, smoke, incense and menthol. A wine of notable density, the Belgrave is super-expressive today, with more than enough fruit and mid-palate sweetness to stand up to the tannins.

Score: 89 - 92 Antonio Galloni, www.vinousmedia.com

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