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I was surprised that no one had yet posted notes from the UGC tastings so I guess I will start it off. Miami finally got a visit from our French friends so I was glad to try such a hyped new vintage. Also joining me were Emilio and his lovely wife, and MiamiAtty, and we all found it quite enjoyable. Emilio also took notes so I hope to see him post here as well. So here's the ones I tasted (about half of those available).

2009 BORDEAUX UNION DES GRANDS CRUS TASTING - The Doral Resort & Spa, Miami, FL (1/23/2012)

This turned out to be a more pleasant event than I expected as the wines (~100) outnumbered the tasters (under 90). There were no lines to taste anything with ample water pitchers, cheese, crackers, and bread, on a lovely evening in South Florida very near the 18th green of the Blue Monster. My general impression of the vintage is that the wines are fairly ripe, lush, and concentrated, but also high in acidity. There are plenty of tannins too, but less so than 05 and they are much smoother and less chewy making the wines much more approachable at release. The wines are also higher in alcohol than normal given the warm vintage. All in all it’s a great vintage for Bordeaux that will age well and some will drink well relatively early. The downside is that prices continue to climb to new highs with the most sought after wines seeing the biggest increases.

Red Bordeaux
  • 2009 Château Clinet - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol
    A very dense and concentrated wine with higher acidity and dark red fruit in a modern style that wasn't as pleasuarble to drink now as some other Right Banks, but likely has a very bright future in store as its frame is built for aging. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Gazin - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol
    Earthy, barnyard nose, but less so on the palate but still distinctive. Reserved fruit that makes for a more traditional style in a fairly fruit forward vintage. (91 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Beau-Séjour Bécot - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Not as well knit as many of the other wines lacking the depth and structure, but enjoyable forward dark fruit, and got a slight sourness on the finish. (90 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Canon - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    More reserved and less forward than many of the Right Banks and came across as more classic and elegant. Not as concentrated, but still well structured and balanced with nice depth and finish. Simply a lovely wine. (94 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Less merlot (45%) and more cab franc make for a more structured wine that is less forward and a brighter, somewhat more tannic and acidic profile. This will age well and be a great food pairing wine. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Figeac - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Lovely plum and currant fruit that has a wonderful balance of tannin, acidity, and concentration that is quite pleasurable to drink now and will be exquisite in the future. (95 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Larcis Ducasse - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Fruit forward, lower acidity (low to medium) and less tannic so it lacks the structure of many of the other wines but is pleasurable for nearer term drinking. (91 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Pavie Macquin - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Higher in tannin and acidity, so well structured for aging. Bright red fruit with a long finish. (94 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Troplong Mondot - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    I found the tannins very assertive in this wine, and it came across as rather concentrated and extracted. There is enough ripe fruit to support it though, so I expect this to become a very nice wine with time though it was less pleasurable for me than most right now. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château La Tour Carnet - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
    Doesn't have the structure or finish of the better wines, but still has a healthy dose of fruit that makes for a nice wine that should round out in a few years. (90 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Giscours - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
    Herbal notes on the entry, the finish was a bit hard and tannic, as this wine is built for the long haul and will require time. (91 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Lascombes - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
    Fragrant nose, mostly dark red fruit with good depth. Surprisingly approachable right now. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Prieuré-Lichine - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
    Soft, reserved wine with a classy, elegant profile (like the 00 I have been enjoying recently), but has a youthful exuberance right now from the lively acidity and young tannins. (91 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Haut-Bailly - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    This came across to me as a bit more classic styled, from its higher level of acidity and well structured, but not overtly ripe fruit. Fairly tightly wound right now but clearly has plenty of density and stuffing to age well. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Malartic-Lagravière - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Juicy dark fruit with good concentration and somewhat higher levels of acidity and (smooth) tannin, making for good overall balance, but less depth than some others. (92 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Pape Clément - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Wonderful concentration and structure that just oozes class and elegance. Dark fruit with lots of depth and plenty of balancing acidity and tannin that should meld into a classic wine in the future. (95 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Smith Haut Lafitte - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Lush for this chateau, and got less of the graphite than usual, but a lovely, more modern and foward style that is bigger framed and riper than typical SHL's. Quite approachable and enjoyable. (94 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Branaire (Duluc-Ducru) - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Slight vegetal note on the entry, with high toned red fruit, and less tannic than others. (92 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Gloria - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Some earthiness on the nose and entry, followed by high toned dark red fruit that has a nice balance that makes for an excellent wine, but not an exceptional one. (90 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Gruaud Larose - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Mostly red fruit, higher acidity (medium to high), and quite smooth and approachable. Quite lovely and won't require as much aging as others. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Langoa Barton - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Dark fruit with good acidity and concentration, but a bit of bell pepper and a little sourness on the finish hurt the score. (89 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Léoville Barton - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Surprisingly elegant for a young L-B, with a terrific sense of balance, yet still with concentration and power and lifting acidity. Very smooth tannins gave this a nice approachability. Fabulous wine and one of my favorites of the tasting. (95 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Léoville Poyferré - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Graphite and cassis along with some grippy tannins on a very structured frame that will require quite some time to enter its prime drinking window. Dark and powerful, this wine is about the future, when it could score 2-3 points higher. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Clerc Milon - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Fairly soft, dark fruit that is more accessible and approachable and less lean than most young Clerc's. Great balance, just lacking the depth and structure to score higher. (92 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Lynch-Bages - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    High toned bright red fruit with considerable tannins that give it lots of structure and agability with further upside potential. (94 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Pichon-Longueville Baron - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Surpringly smooth and approachable, yet still well structured with good concentration of dark fruit and classic Pauillac elements. (94 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Powerful for Lalande, yet still smooth and elegant and structured with great density and depth. A phenominal wine that was my favorite Left Bank of the tasting as it was very pleasurable to drink now and will only get better. (96 pts.)

Sauternes
I was quite impressed with the 09 Sauternes which come acrooss as rich and concentrated, yet have plenty of acidity to provide balance and keep it nimble on the palate with the best examples.
  • 2009 Château Climens - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac
    Terrific balance in that it is fairly concentrated but has just the right acidity to make this wonderful to drink without being cloying or flabby. (95 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Coutet - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac
    This had richer fruit and less acidity than the Climens, which I preferred just a little less. (94 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Guiraud - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    Sweeter and thicker texture, but still nicely balanced. This will appeal to those who like a richer style of Sauternes. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Château La Tour Blanche Sauternes - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    Had the least acidity but did have rich fruit and sweetness which kept it from optimal balance for my taste. (92 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    This was the last wine I tasted and my attention was going elsewhere, but it was my least favorite of the Sauternes I tried as it was lacking the depth and balance of most of the others. (91 pts.)
  • 2009 Château Suduiraut - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    I picked up the most botrysis in this one and it had great concentration, but still a nice balance from ample acidity and the most interesting fruit of the bunch. (95 pts.)
Original Post

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I'm not really sure how to import a tasting event from CT to here in an existing thread, so I'll share my thoughts without the notes (which really aren't that detailed to begin with).

I thought the wines were practically all showing very well, and I was amazed at just how well they were drinking at this stage. Many had very tight & tannic structures that I would expect, yet many didn't have that tightness at all. The wines that stood out the most to me were:

La Conseillante (WOTN for me, tasted twice with consistent notes)
Pichon Baron (just barely behind Conseillante)
Domaine de Chevalier Rouge (the Blanc was also very good, but the red really stood out)
Pape Clement Rouge (didn't particularly care for the Blanc, but the red was quite a heavy hitter)
Grand Puy Lacoste
Carbonnieux Blanc (favorite white of the tasting)
Haut Bailly
Smith Haut Lafitte Rouge (white also good, on par with Chevalier Blanc)
La Lagune
Batailley (seems like this might be my choice for best QPR)
Clerc Milon
Lynch Bages
Figeac

Leoville Poyferre ended up not being there (at least I couldn't find them), so that was disappointing. A couple other disappointments were Gruaud Larose, Pape Clement Blanc, Pichon Lalande and Clinet. None of these were bad wines, just not where I had hoped they would be.
Best: Sauternes
Worst: Everything else.

I came to taste Bordeaux, and all I got was wines that tasted like California. Overripe, high alcohol without the finesse. This was my 4th UGC tasting, and I was very disappointed in the reds. I will drink all mine young, but I'm sure the best wines will age.

Sauternes were very good, better than 2005 I thought. I enjoyed the opulent tropical fruit and balance in the wines. A notch below 2007, but still outstanding.
Nice notes Vinole. Under 100 people in total? Did they run out of wine at all? Sounds like I need to plan a vacation to Florida next January

Here are my notes from the LA tasting.

UNION DES GRANDS GRUS 2009 BORDEAUX TASTING - Petersen Automotive Museum, Los Angeles (1/20/2012)

I think it must be said upfront, the 2009's did in fact live up to the hype. While there were some average wines in the room, the quality across the board was fantastic and there were some real stunners in this group, and no real stinkers. At least from the wines I tried.

This was my second time attending the UGC event hosted by Wally's Wine & Spirits, and while I was thrilled with the wines, I was extremely disappointing with how the tasting was organized. Poor crowd control at the entrance, limited spit buckets, no pourers at the tables when the doors were opened, and lacking clear signage.

When the doors were first opened, it was a bull rush to get in and grab a glass, then with no pourers manning the stations, the crowd turned to pouring their own wines. With an already light supply of wine to feed the massive crowd, this further reduced the stock and most of the good wines were finished by the end of the first hour.

I decided to taste Pauillac first, my favorite region, then move onto Saint Julien. Unfortunately this means I missed out on a lot of my favorites, especially the big guns from Pomerol and Margaux.

I was surprised by the showing of the whites, which were all very good, as well as the Sauternes. While the reds from 2009 have been heralded, the whites have somewhat gone under the radar.
Pessac-Léognan
  • 2009 Domaine de Chevalier Blanc - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Beautiful nose of fresh citrus and a hint of tropical fruits, along with a grassy aroma blended in. Tart citrus shows strong on the palate, as well as crushed stones, grass, pineapple, lychee, and a hit of oak. Gripping acidity, with a somewhat oily texture. Seemed a bit shut down to me, but was still showing the quality you can expect from this estate. Very good.
  • 2009 Domaine de Chevalier - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Rich and concentrated on the nose, giving off aromas of freshly ground coffee beans, black pepper, tar, and cassis. Some tartness on the palate, showing plum, red cherry, black currants, and black pepper. Quite dense and concentrated on the palate, this is a big wine. Silky tannins, with a medium finish ending with a note of cranberry. Good.
  • 2009 Château Haut-Bailly - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Gorgeous rich nose showing tons of spice - black pepper, black cherry, floral, prune, asphalt, and graphite. The strong showing of spice carries through on the palate, along with lead pencil, black plum and black cherry. Dense, gripping tannins, and tons of acidity. Medium+ finish, ending with notes of graphite and black plum. I really enjoyed this. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Haut-Bergey Blanc - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Fabulous nose of bitter papaya seeds, tropical fruits, cantaloupe, and lime zest. On the palate the sweet papaya follows through, along with toasted oak, lemon juice, and melon. Nice acidity, with a long finish ending with notes of papaya and lemon. A great showing for this humble wine, this was hitting way above its weight class. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Haut-Bergey - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Rich nose of cassis, toasted oak, black currants, and red cherries. Lots of spice - black pepper and clove on the palate, along with black cherries, black plums, currants, and coffee. Moderate tannin, with a medium finish ending with a note of black pepper. While this was nice, it came off as being fairly simple. Good.
  • 2009 Château Pape Clément Blanc - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    A very nice papaya seed aroma on the nose, as well as lime juice, melon, and some floral notes. A touch of grass on the palate, along with crushed rocks and toasted oak. This was oily in texture, with a medium+ finish ending with notes of oak and grass. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Pape Clément - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Beautiful rich nose of dark dried fruits, asphalt, black pepper, toasted oak, and coffee. Tons of black pepper come through on the palate, along with black cherry, cassis, asphalt, graphite, toasted oak, and a touch of mint. Moderate tannins, with a medium+ finish ending with notes of cassis and black pepper. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Huge nose of fresh sweet papaya, bitter papaya seeds, lime, and tropical fruits. Delicious smelling nose. Tons more papaya follow through on the palate, along with lime, almond, toasted oak, and a touch of grass. Very creamy in texture, and quite complex. Long finish, ending with notes of papaya and lime. Fantastic.
  • 2009 Château Smith Haut Lafitte - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
    Rich nose, with lots of black pepper and clove spice upfront, followed by red cherry, cassis, some floral aromas and smoke. As well quite smokey on the palate, along with tart red currants, lots of spice -black pepper and clove, toasted oak, and black plum. High acidity, with mouth numbing tannins. Medium+ finish, ending with notes of clove and oak. Very good.

St. Émilion
  • 2009 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Rich and concentrated on the nose, showing freshly ground coffee beans, cedar, graphite, black plums, and a touch of black pepper. Lots of lead pencil on the palate, along with sweet cassis, toasted oak, black plum, and mocha. Dusty tannins, with a medium+ finish ending with notes of cassis and espresso. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Pavie Macquin - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru
    Very concentrated on the nose, showing cassis, cedar, mint, a medicinal aroma, and some herbal characteristics. Dense on the palate, and once again displaying herbs, menthol, asphalt, black plums, leather, and a rubber bandaid note. Medium finish, ending with notes of leather and black plums. This bottle had some funk to it and I'm convinced it was slightly off, especially after reading the other notes on this wine. Withholding judgement.

Haut-Médoc
  • 2009 Château La Lagune - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc
    Rich nose of espresso, black plums, black cherries, some floral aromas and black pepper. Concentrated on the palate, showing black cherries, lot of black pepper, plums, cassis, and a touch of mint. Tons of tannin, with a medium+ finish ending with notes of black pepper and currants. Very good.

Margaux
  • 2009 Château Cantenac Brown - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
    Concentrated on the nose, displaying aromas of violet, fresh coffee beans, red cherry, and black plums. Tons of red cherry on the palate, along with freshly ground coffee beans, toasted oak, and spice - black pepper. Medium- finish ending with notes of violet and coffee beans. Good.

St. Julien
  • 2009 Château Beychevelle - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Lots of violet upfront on the nose, followed by coffee beans, graphite, red cherry, and mint. A bit of heat on the palate, displaying espresso, black plums, asphalt, and lead pencil. Moderate tannins, with a medium finish ending with notes of graphite and espresso. Good.
  • 2009 Château Branaire (Duluc-Ducru) - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Light and elegant on the nose, displaying aromas of black pepper spice, black plums, black currants, along with some mint. Lots of black pepper on the palate, along with black plum, asphalt, cassis, and herbs. Sandy tannins, with a medium finish ending with notes of herbs and black pepper. Quite simple without a lot of complexity. Good.
  • 2009 Château Gloria - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    A bit restrained on the nose, displaying coffee, toasted oak, asphalt, and mint. More body comes through on the palate, showing a hefty amount of spice, red cherry, black plum, smokey oak, coffee, and tart red currants. Dusty tannins, with a medium finish ending with notes of red currants and coffee. Good.
  • 2009 Château Gruaud Larose - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Great nose giving off aromas of fresh coffee beans, asphalt, leather, black cherry, black plum, herbs, and some spice. More coffee beans come through on the palate, along with saddle leather, lead pencil, black cherry, and some herbs. Moderate tannins, with a medium+ finish ending with notes of herbs and lead pencil. A nice wine, this showed really well. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Léoville Barton - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Beautiful, rich nose, showing cassis, lead pencil shavings, tar, black cherry, black plum, and toasted oak. More lead pencil on the velvety palate, along with cedar, asphalt, black currant, earth, and lots of black cherry and black plum. A ton of gripping tannins, with a long finish ending with notes of black cherry and lead pencil. Another great Barton. Fantastic.
  • 2009 Château Léoville Poyferré - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Great nose, showing tons of richness and concentration. Aromas of fresh coffee beans, black cherry, black plums, cassis, graphite, and blackberry. Lost of black cherry follow through on the palate, along with roasted coffee beans, black currants, toasted oak, lead pencil, and tobacco. Plenty of sandy tannins, with a long finish ending with notes of currants and toasted oak. A stunner, one of the top wines of the night. Fantastic.
  • 2009 Château Saint-Pierre - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Tons of freshly ground coffee beans on the nose, along with rich black fruits, sweet cassis, toasted oak, and graphite. Slightly sweet on the palate, showing cassis, lead pencil, red cherry, espresso, and a hint of mint. Medium finish, ending with notes of black currants and fresh mint. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Talbot - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Tons of barnyard on the nose, along with aromas of leather, black cherries, dark plums, black pepper spice, graphite, and cassis. Lots of saddle leather upfront on the palate, as well as a good amount of black cherries, lead pencil, cedar, and dark berries. Dusty tannins, with a medium+ finish ending on a note of saddle leather. Very good.

Pauillac
  • 2009 Château Clerc Milon - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Rich nose of violets, graphite, crushed stones, black pepper spice, and anise. A bit of tart plum upfront on the palate, followed by red cherries, asphalt, black currants, and lead pencil. Gripping tannins, with a medium+ finish ending on a note of cassis. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Lots of barnyard on the nose, followed by saddle leather, black cherry, and lead pencil. More earthy barnyard on the palate, along with black cherries, dark plums, lead pencil shavings, and a ton of leather. Dusty tannins, with a medium finish ending on a note of lead pencil. Maybe this was a bit closed, but to be honest I was underwhelmed on this showing. Good.
  • 2009 Château Lynch-Bages - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Fantastic nose displaying aromas of barnyard, dark dried fruits, black plums, red cherries, and graphite. Luscious on the palate, giving off lots of lead pencil, saddle leather, barnyard, tart red currants, rounded out by some black pepper spice. Sandy tannins, with a medium+ finish ending with notes of lead pencil and cassis. A beautiful wine that blows the '08 clear out of the water. Seductive, this was my favorite wine on the evening. Outstanding.
  • 2009 Château Pichon-Longueville Baron - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Gorgeous nose of freshly roasted coffee beans, lead pencil, black cherries, dark plums, asphalt, and cassis. Lots of complexity and layers on the nose. Great structure on the palate, displaying lead pencil shavings, cassis, red currants, dark cherries, black plums, and a good dose of espresso. Lots of gripping tannins, along with a long finish ending with notes of espresso and lead pencil. A great wine, and if it wasn't for the Lynch-Bages on this evening, this would have been my wine of the tasting. Fantastic.
  • 2009 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
    Beautiful slightly restrained nose displaying aromas of lead pencil, black cherry, dark plum, and come floral characteristics. On the palate, more lead pencil, black cherry, black currants, cedar, and a touch of asphalt. Very well balanced, with a ton of structure, and mouth numbing tannins. Long finish, ending with notes of graphite and black cherry. A fabulous wine, in my top 3 of the night next to the Lynch-Bages and Pichon Baron. Fantastic.

St. Estèphe
  • 2009 Château Phélan Ségur - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe
    Rich nose displaying aromas of freshly ground coffee beans, dark plums, leather, and asphalt. Showing a bit of heat on the palate, along with espresso, sweet cassis, dark plum, and black cherry.Medium+ finish, ending with notes of espresso and dark plums. Good.

Barsac & Sauternes
  • 2009 Château Climens - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac
    Beautiful nose of cantaloupe, orange zest, honey, caramel, and some floral characteristics mixed in. Luscious on the tongue showing sweet honeysuckle, caramel, melon, orange marmalade, roasted almonds, and a touch of bitter coffee bean. Nice acidity, and a long finish ending on a note of caramel. Fantastic.
  • 2009 Château Coutet - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac
    A gorgeous, seductive nose of sweet honeysuckle, orange marmalade, pineapple, and a touch of lemon zest. Viscous and dense on the palate, displaying fresh honey, candied orange peel, caramel, and salty toffee. Great acidity, and a long finish ending with notes of caramel and clove spice. As usually, this was extremely enjoyable and showing very well young. Fantastic.
  • 2009 Château de Rayne-Vigneau - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    Some nice floral aromas on the nose, along with honeysuckle, orange marmalade, caramel, almonds, and a hint of spice. More orange marmalade on the palate, as well as caramel and some tropical fruits. A pleasant surprise, and a nice wine for the price. Very good.
  • 2009 Château Doisy-Daëne - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    Much dryer and less sweet than the other Sauternes on the nose, showing lime zest, lemon juice, orange peel, and green apple. Sweeter on the palate, displaying rich caramel, honey, orange marmalade, lemon pie, and cantaloupe. Long finish, ending with notes of cantaloupe and caramel. Always a nice wine for the price. Very good.
  • 2009 Château La Tour Blanche Sauternes - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    Peach, apricot, honey, and lime zest on the nose. On the palate, honeysuckle, orange peel, caramel, and a touch of spice rounds everything out. Medium finish ending with notes of orange peel and caramel. Quite simple. Good.
  • 2009 Château Suduiraut - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    Great nose, displaying aromas of lime zest, mandarin orange, apricot, honey, and caramel. Dense on the palate, showing honeysuckle, caramel, lemon curd, orange juice, cantaloupe, and some almond nuttiness. Long finish, ending with notes of lemon curd and caramel. Very good.


I really do wish I had a chance to taste more of the wines, which leaves me with mixed feelings on the event.

If I had to pick a top 5 on the evening, they would be

1. 2009 Château Lynch-Bages - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
2. 2009 Château Pichon-Longueville Baron - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
3. 2009 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
4. 2009 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
5. 2009 Château Coutet - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac
Posted from CellarTracker
quote:
Originally posted by Wine Sparty:
quote:
Originally posted by Vino Me:
Best St. Emilion: Canon La Gaffeliere
VM

I unfortunately missed out on this one. It kind of slipped through the cracks and by time I got back to their table, it was all out.


I thought CLG was very tannic, like most right bank wines I tried. I'm attributing this to the merlot in 2009, but there may be other factors involved.
This was the 5th UGC tasting I have been to (the others were 2000, 2001, 2003 and 2005). This was the trade tasting and the event was well organized. Less crowded than previous events. The lines to get wine were non existent or one person at most. I ended up tasting almost 60 wines over 3 hours so palate fatigue was setting in at the end. The wines that I really wanted to rty but could not because they had either run out or were not present were La Gaffeliere, Rauzan Segla, Leoville Poyferre, Pichon Baron and Pichon Lalande.

Overall, the regions which stuck out for me were St. Emilion, St. Julien and Margaux. There were only a few St. Estephe wines but from what was there the quality was high. A few comments on some of the individual regions: The Pessac Leognan wines were marked by asphalt and tar notes.. The Pomerol were probably the most closed. By contrast, The St. Emilion were some of the most open and forward with fine tannins and rather expressive. They showed much better than Pomerol. The St. Julien wines were the most aromatic and together with Margaux showed consistently fine wines which compared very well to previous vintages from this decade. The Sauternes, although fine, were less impressive and I thought lagged behind both the great 2001 vintage and the 2003.

In terms of overall vintage quality for the reds. I don't think it is a stretch to say that 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009 are the 4 best vintages in the last 10 years. Of those 4, it is my opinion that for Right Bank wines should be ranked as follows (starting with the best): 2005, 2009, 2000, 2003. For Left Bank wines I would rate the vintages as follows: 2000, tie between 2005 and 2009 and then 2003. The 2003 was in 4th place on both sides of the Gironde. 2009 is a classic vintage which will reward those who bought and will be a long lived vintage.

Here are my notes:

Pessac-Léognan
  • 2009 Domaine de Chevalier - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    Lead pencil and roasted coffee aromas. Chewy texture with typical asphalt/tar notes. Moderate tannins. 89-92 points.

  • 2009 Château de Fieuzal - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Sauvignon. Very aromatic. Notes of black cherry. More approachable and less tannic than many of the Pessac-Leognan wines. Close in quality to the 2000. 89-90 points.

  • 2009 Château Haut-Bailly - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    60% Cabernet Sauvignon Franc, 37% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc. A little funk on the nose. Herbal notes with black fruit and leather. Dry finish. Not as deep as the most other wines at the tasting. About the equal of the 2005 in my opinion. 87-90+ points.

  • 2009 Château La Louvière - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    This wine is better than the 2003 or 2005 at the same age and has the potential to be as good as the 1990. A little skunky at first but that blew off. Asphalt notes with dark berries and toasted oak. Shorter finish in comparison. 90-92 points.

  • 2009 Château Larrivet-Haut-Brion - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    This wine was unique in that it had a grapefruit or citrus nuance under the fruit. Rather acidic now. Notes of crushed grape skin and leather. Not as full or as deep as the 2000 which I liked much better. 86-88 points.

  • 2009 Château Malartic-Lagravière - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot and 3% Petite Verdot. Smokey red currant with cassis and tar. Medium bodied. This is potentially the best of the 6 wines from this estate which I have had. 90-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Pape Clément - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc. The first wine I tried that really stood out at the tasting. Well balanced with spiced fruit, cocoa and mint notes. Firm tannins. 92-95 points.

  • 2009 Château Smith Haut Lafitte - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (1/27/2012)
    The 5th UGC wine I've had from this estate and among the best. It was also the best of the Pessac Leognan wines at the tasting in my opinion. Rich texture. Typical asphalt notes with cedar and an herbal quality. Sweeter tannins and a long finish. 93-95 points.

St. Émilion
  • 2009 Château Beau-Séjour Bécot - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    Although I liked this better than the 2000 but I thought both the 2003 and 2005 were superior. A little carmel on the nose. Sweeter fruit notes with black currant, berries and spice. Rounder texture. 91-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Canon - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    75% Merlot and 25% Cabernet Franc. The best young Canon that I have had. Creamy texture. Notes of dark fruit, wet earth, tobacco and earth. Medium to full bodied. 92-94 points.

  • 2009 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    55% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. My favorite St. Emilion and potentially the best Canon la Gaffeliere I have ever had. Dark violet color. The tannins seemed smoother than most wines. This had and ethereal and silky feel. Notes of black cherry and dark chocolate. 94-95 points.

  • 2009 Château Figeac - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    Approximately 35% Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon and 30% Merlot. I expected more from this wine despite the fact that I thought it was the equal or perhaps slightly better than the 2005. Burnt tobacco on the nose. Notes of black currant and espresso. This had more backbone than many of the St. Emilion wines but was very tight and rather closed. 91-94 points.

  • 2009 Clos Fourtet - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    A concentrated wine with solid tannins. A minerally character with black pepper and blackberry notes. 90-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Grand Mayne - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    Very consistent wine from my tastings of the 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009. Deep red. Notes of iron, plum, grape skins and lead pencil. Very firm tannins. 90-92 points.

  • 2009 Château La Couspaude - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    A little funk on the nose at first but it blew off to reveal a very fine wine. Stoney character with jammy red fruit. Firm tannins. 91-93 points.

  • 2009 Château La Dominique - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    I was disappointed in the 2005 but this wine was far superior. Dark purple color. Showing less fruit at present than many other St. Emilion. Creamy vanilla oak and wet earth notes. Solid mid palate. 90-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Pavie Macquin - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    84% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Cabernet Franc. A very concentrated and ripe wine. Notes of tar, violets and berries but hiding much of it's fruit. Long finish. Another standout among the St. Emilion wines. Almost as good as the prodigious 2005. 92-95 points.

  • 2009 Château Troplong Mondot - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru (1/27/2012)
    90% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. Consistently fine. Just as good as the 2003. The 2005 was slighlty better. Underbrush aromas. Dry mouthsmacking texture. Notes of truffles, cocoa powder and raspberry. Firm tannins. 92-94 points.

Pomerol
  • 2009 Château Clinet - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol (1/27/2012)
    87% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon. More aromatic with floral nuances. Extremely tannic which hid much of the fruit. Roasted coffe and tar notes. Dry finish. Full bodied.91-94+ points.

  • 2009 Château Gazin - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol (1/27/2012)
    This wine had a lighter feel to it. Woody notes with shitake and plum. Moderate tannins. I thought both the 2003 and 2005 were better. 88-90 points.

  • 2009 Château La Conseillante - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol (1/27/2012)
    81% Merlot and 19% Cabernet Franc. Supple feel to this wine. The best Pomerol wine at the tasting and although I have not tried the 2000, this is my favorite Conseillante of the last 10 years. Floral aromas. Rich texture with red currents, leather and blueberry notes. Long finish. Full bodied. 94-96 points.

  • 2009 Château Petit Village - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol (1/27/2012)
    75% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Sauvignon and 8% Cabernet Franc. Tried this at the very end of the tasting. Notes of licorice and red currants. Solid tannins standing in front of most of the fruit. This fell between the 2003 and the 2005 (the latter of which was superior). 89-91 points.

Margaux
  • 2009 Château Brane-Cantenac - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot and 7% Cabernet Franc. This was one of the big surprises at the tasting for me. Better than the 2000, 2003 or 2005 at the same stage (although the 2000 was very close). Creamy texture. Loaded with dark fruit and currants. Well balanced. Firm tannins. 92-94 points.

  • 2009 Château Cantenac Brown - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    Another surprise at this tasting. Better than the 2000 or 2003 and equal to the 2005. Notes of coffee, minerals and berries. Solid acidity and tannins. 91-92+ points.

  • 2009 Château Dauzac - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    64% Cabernet Sauvignon and 36% Merlot. Good value here. Medium red color. Notes of smoky oak, asphalt and wet stones with a solid core of fruit. Chocolate on the finish. Medium bodied. 90-93 points.

  • 2009 Château du Tertre - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc and 8% Petit Verdot. This and the Ferriere were the two Margaux wines that did not live up to expectations. Better only than the 2001 vintage (2000, 2003 and 2005 were better). Notes of cocoa, herbs and shitake mushrooms. Moderate tannins. 89-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Durfort-Vivens - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc. The 2005 was better. Tried toward the end of the evening so my notes were brief but this tasted rather vegetal to me. 87-88 points.

  • 2009 Château Ferrière - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc. Disappointing. Nowhere near the quality of the 2000, 2003 or 2005. Overly acidic with simple and light fruit overpowered by the tannins (even considering it's age). 86-87 points.

  • 2009 Château Giscours - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Perfume nose. Notes of graphite and a little green pepper. An earthy finish. Medium bodied with solid tannins. 89-92 points.

  • 2009 Château Kirwan - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, a remarkable 13% Petit Verdot and 13% Cabernet Franc. A fine showing. Not as good as the very impressive 2005 though. Blackish red color. Solid acidity. Notes of cassis and crushed grape skin. Tannic. 91-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Lascombes - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    48% Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot and 4% Petit Verdot. My favorite wine from Margaux. Far surpasses the 2003 and just as good as the excellent 2005. Dark purple color. Fine acidity. Notes of tar and black fruit. Full bodied with powerful but fine tannins. A big wine. 93-96 points.

  • 2009 Château Marquis de Terme - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    60% Cabernet Sauvignon 34% Merlot and 6% Petit Verdot. First time I have had this wine. I know the 2005 got very good reviews but this did not impress. Tart red fruit notes. Medium bodied. 86-89 points.

  • 2009 Château Prieuré-Lichine - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    65% Cabernet Sauvignon 30% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot. I've never tried this wine before although I own the 1963. Smoke, underbrush and tar notes. Rich with a nice finish. 90-92 points.

  • 2009 Château Rauzan-Gassies - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (1/30/2012)
    75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot. Slightly better than the 2005. Tart red and black fruit with some cherry notes. Rather tannic finish. 88-89 points.

St. Julien
  • 2009 Château Beychevelle - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    The best young Beychevelle I have ever had and could even be better than the 1989 in the long run. Good structure. Solid red fruit with confit notes. Balanced with moderate tannins. Medium t full bodied. 92-94 points.

  • 2009 Château Branaire (Duluc-Ducru) - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    In the last 10 years, only the 2000 was better. A pretty floral nose. Sweet fruit and well structured. Notes of Lead pencil, dark chocolate and blackberry. Vibrant finish and moderate tannins. 91-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Gloria - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot. Aromatic nose which outshown what was present on the palate. Notes of brambly red fruit. Lighter body. I slightly preferred the 2000 to this wine. 89-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Gruaud Larose - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    65% Cabernet Sauvignon and 35% Merlot. This was one of a trio of St. Julien wines which shined at the tasting. First showing some of the typical G-L old world nose. Notes of pencil lead, plum and licorice. Well balanced. Of the dozen or so G-L wines I've had, only the 2000 was clearly superior. This has the potential to be as good as the 1982, 1989 or 2005. 93-95 points. On the lower end now.

  • 2009 Château Lagrange St. Julien - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    73% Cabernet Sauvignon and 27% Merlot. Probably the best LaGrange of the decade although the 2003 will be hard to beat. This is an estate I have also enjoyed. Spice aromas fill the glass. Notes fo ripe red fruit and burnt oak. Full bodied and a round texture. Long finish. 94-95 points.

  • 2009 Château Langoa Barton - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc. Sweeter nose than many of the St. Julien wines. Lead pencil, berry and black cherry notes. Medium bodied. 88-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Léoville Barton - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot and just a touch of Cabernet Franc thrown in. I only had the 2001 and 2005 at a similar age. This was far better than the 2001 and approached the classic 2005. Dark purple color. A very deep wine with powerful tannins. Notes of vanilla, oak and black fruit which was mostly hidden now. Lipsmackingly dry finish. Full bodied. The best St. Julien wine at the tasting. 94-97 points.

  • 2009 Château Saint-Pierre - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    81% Cabernet Sauvignon and 19% Merlot. Where did this wine come from? I've had the 1990 and 2000 and neither were near the quality of the 2009. Tannic backbone. Smooth and more elegant than most of the St. Julien wines at this stage. Rich berry and currant notes. Medium to full bodied. 91-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Talbot - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (1/31/2012)
    65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 5% Petite Verdot. At the same young age, only the 2000 was as good in the last 10 years. A little funk on the nose at first. Integrated fruit with red currant notes. Silky tannins. This could be as good as the 1989 in the long run. 90-92 points.

Pauillac
  • 2009 Château Clerc Milon - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac (1/31/2012)
    50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot and 1% Carmenère (the only Bordeaux at the tasting which still used this grape as far as I know). Loved the 2003, disappointed in the 2005, the 2009 is an excellent rebound. Notes of graphite, black fruit and boysenberry with some cedar on the finish. Medium to full bodied. Firm tannins. 92-94 points.

  • 2009 Château d'Armailhac - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac (1/31/2012)
    60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. About the 12th vintage of this wine I have had going back to 1971. This falls in the middle somewhere in terms of quality. The 1990, 1995 and 2000 were better. An earthy nose. Notes of tobacco and milky red fruit. Medium bodied. Moderate tannins. 89-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac (1/31/2012)
    80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc. I've never had this on release so I did not know what to expect although I've had a few older bottles. Sweet nose. Notes of tobacco and cedar. Not much fruit now. Firm tannins. Doesn't seem that this will approach the excellent 1989 but still and very good wine. 90-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Haut-Bages Libéral - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac (1/31/2012)
    Dark blackish red. Notes of tea, gravel and roasted black cherries. Short on fruit at present because of it's tannic structure. I liked the 2000, 2003 and 2005 all better at the same age. 88-90 points.

  • 2009 Château Lynch-Bages - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac (1/31/2012)
    76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. This was my favorite St. Julien wine at the tasting. The 2nd best Lynch Bages made in the last 10 years (after the 2000). Pretty floral nose. Round texture. Notes of licorice and plum. Silky tannins. Long finish. 95-96+ points.

St. Estèphe
  • 2009 Château Cos Labory - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe (1/31/2012)
    Probably the biggest surprise at the UGC tasting. What a leap in quality this wine made from previous years. Creamy texture. Notes of ripe blackberry, cassis and pencil shavings. Vanilla notes on the finish. medium to full bodied. Great value for about $35 now. 92-94 points.

  • 2009 Château Lafon-Rochet - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe (1/31/2012)
    A very good effort but not close to the quality of the 2000 vintage. Violet red color. Lead pencil, saddle leather and berry notes. Bulky tannins and a dry finish. 88-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Les Ormes de Pez - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe (1/31/2012)
    54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Another estate which stepped up the quality from the 2005 vintage. Floral nose. Graphite, anise and raspberry notes. Round texture. Silky but firm tannins. Another good value. 92-93 points.

Other Médoc
  • 2009 Château Chasse-Spleen - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Moulis en Médoc (1/30/2012)
    This wine had a pretty nose which showed more than most wines. Notes of licorice and chocolaty fruit. 89-91 points.

  • 2009 Château Cantemerle - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Haut-Médoc (1/30/2012)
    A blend of 49% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, 7% Petite Verdot and 6% Cab Franc. 4th time I have tried this wine at a UGC (the 2000, 2003 and 2005 being the others. This was better than the 2003, about the equal of the 2005 and not as good as the 2000. Cigarette tobacco aromas. Lighter to medium bodied. Dark fruit. Moderate tannins. 89-91 points.

Barsac & Sauternes
  • 2009 Château Climens - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac (1/31/2012)
    Apricot and spice notes. 93-95 points.

  • 2009 Château La Tour Blanche Sauternes - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes (1/31/2012)
    Comparable to the 2003 but below the 2001. Not as concentrated as the Climens. Integrated wine with pear nectar and apricot notes. 92-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes (1/31/2012)
    Better than the 2005 but not as good as the 2000 or especially the 2001. Equal to the 2003. No formal notes. 91-93 points.

  • 2009 Château Suduiraut - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes (1/31/2012)
    This is a wine which fell short of the 2001, 2003 and 2005 vintages. No formal notes. 91-92 points.

VM
Last edited by Vino Me
quote:
Originally posted by Vino Me:
In terms of overall vintage quality for the reds. I don't think it is a stretch to say that 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009 are the 4 best vintages in the last 10 years.
Interesting putting 03 in there. From what I have tasted, I actually prefer 01 to 03. From what I have read, it seems that 08 would suit me more than 03. Time will really tell though….

I think it’s great you guys have the passion and dedication to stand there for 3 hours and taste 60 wines and still have an impression about them. Thanks for taking the time to post notes. I would last for about 10 wines and then I would want to grab dinner to ease my ailing palate. If I tasted 60 in a night, I wouldn’t drink wine for 3 months!

After buying 00, 01, small amount of 03, and going big on 05, I only bought a little bit of 08 and just Montrose in 09. Might pick up a few random 09’s when they hit the LWS, but I’m pretty well stock for Bordeaux.
quote:
Originally posted by aml:
I have no idea how people take detailed notes at this thing. I was running around like a chicken with its head cut off, and only have a few scribbles in my notebook for each wine.

I didn't find myself to quite be the chicken with its head cut off, but I do manage to only get a few notes for each wine as well. I was more in the range of 30 different wines, rather than the 60 ( Winner) that VM managed. I was spent at that point, and left about 15-20 minutes early.
I have a number of 2009 Grand Cru TNs posted to my Twitter account from the UGC tasting of the 2009s in London posted 24th November 2011.

I will also be at the UGC WGC event in Bordeaux May 2012 where the 2009s will be tasted again. It will be interesting to compare the results of the two tastings given another 6 months of bottle age and a clean slate for the tasting notes.

Pichon Lalande was best in class at last November's UGC tasting for 2009s but of the many 2010s tasted earlier in the year at Bibendum this saw Pichon Longueville Baron come out top. No 1st growths in either unfortunately. Prices were eye watering for both 2009 & 2010 though, I thought the 2005s were pricey when released!

I'm afraid you are too kind on the 2009 Sauternes/Barsac ratings for my liking. A bit like the 2005 they are rich but most are seriously lacking in enough balancing acidity I look for. The balance of the 2001, 2002 and 2007 Sauterne/Barsac gernerally shine over the 2005s and 2009s IMHO.
Interesting notes. I found 2004, 2006 and 2008 showing much better with better acidity, balance and classic structure than the 2009 vintage. This was my 4th UGC tasting and the reds as previously stated were more like examples from California. I can't understand how people were able to tell the reds apart, as I couldn't taste much of any difference between each wine. I attribute it to the high alcohols in the wines, as I've never experienced it before at such tastings.

Agree with ilb013 on Sauternes, but I still enjoyed them at this stage.
quote:
Originally posted by khmark7:
Interesting notes. I found 2004, 2006 and 2008 showing much better with better acidity, balance and classic structure than the 2009 vintage. This was my 4th UGC tasting and the reds as previously stated were more like examples from California. I can't understand how people were able to tell the reds apart, as I couldn't taste much of any difference between each wine. I attribute it to the high alcohols in the wines, as I've never experienced it before at such tastings.

Agree with ilb013 on Sauternes, but I still enjoyed them at this stage.


Glad someone said it. I had the same problem.
quote:
Originally posted by GlennK:
Interesting putting 03 in there. From what I have tasted, I actually prefer 01 to 03. From what I have read, it seems that 08 would suit me more than 03. Time will really tell though….

I'm not aware of any expert who put 2001 ahead of 2003. Based on my tastings at the 2001 UGC Event, I thought 2001 was a good vintage with soft and approachable wines which would be suitable for early drinking (relatively). However, they lacked the ripeness and structure of 2003 (especially Left Bank). I suppose it is a matter of style as you posted.

VM
quote:
Originally posted by khmark7:
I can't understand how people were able to tell the reds apart, as I couldn't taste much of any difference between each wine.


I think this is a problem is a very warm ripe year. The differences in fragrances in particular are lost with the very ripe fruit and higher alcohols. It's not that these are bad wines just that they loose some typicity of the appellation.

This is also a problem I find with very ripe Pinot Noir, especially from California. Frankly I think this is where RP has got it wrong with the blockbusters etc. Those nuances of aromas and to some extent flavours all become rather similar and so the sense of place or even differences in clones tends to get lost.

As I said, these are not a bad wines but I don't want my Margaux to smell and taste like a Pauillac.

Glad other people like acidity in their Sauternes/Barsac. I'm afraid I dislike the 2005s and frankly am not encouraged by the 2009s. To me the acidity is an essential to balance the sweetness and reduces any cloying nature whilst adding a lovely freshness. I couldn't imagine eating Fois Gras with a rather glycerous but flabby Sauternes, you need the acidity to cut through all that richness.
quote:
Originally posted by Vino Me:
quote:
Originally posted by jburman82:
Count me as one of the non experts who much prefers 01 to 03. 2003 Bordeaux is way to New World for me.

I would fully expect 2001 to be drinking better than 2003 now. 2003 was so ripe, extracted and tannic. In 20 years, 2003 should be drinking better and not resembling California as much.

VM


VM, extracted is one word I never want associated with my bordeaux. I much prefer classically styled bordeaux than any of the new world style wines. Nothing wrong with it if thats what you prefer but its not for me.
quote:
Originally posted by ilb013:
Frankly I think this is where RP, JL, HS, JS have got it wrong with the blockbusters etc. Those nuances of aromas and to some extent flavours all become rather similar and so the sense of place or even differences in clones tends to get lost.

I would also add that Robert Parker's reviews of any region in the world mean nothing to me.

His time has come and gone. Let younger, more acute palates prevail. Wink
quote:
Originally posted by Board-O:
quote:
Originally posted by gigabit:
I would also add that Robert Parker's reviews of any region in the world mean nothing to me.


Give him his due credit. He's good with young Rhone reds.


Not sure I can agree with you there....I have had so many 2007 rhones that are hot alcoholic messes...most rated 93-97pts by RP
VM[/QUOTE]
VM, extracted is one word I never want associated with my bordeaux. I much prefer classically styled bordeaux than any of the new world style wines. Nothing wrong with it if thats what you prefer but its not for me.[/QUOTE]

Amen to that!

Certainly I can't see most right bank 2003 lasting, developing and drinking well. I tasted a number at the UGC WGC in Bordeaux in 2008 and they were already loosing their balance being rather burnt, tarry and without acidity due to their highr proportion of Merlot. St Estephe would be my best bet for longer term 2003 cellaring in general. Most of the others I'd want to drink pretty soon if not already!
quote:
Originally posted by Dave Canada:
quote:
Originally posted by Board-O:
quote:
Originally posted by gigabit:
I would also add that Robert Parker's reviews of any region in the world mean nothing to me.


Give him his due credit. He's good with young Rhone reds.


Not sure I can agree with you there....I have had so many 2007 rhones that are hot alcoholic messes...most rated 93-97pts by RP


I haven't found that to be the case with 2007s I've tasted, but I tasted them a year and a half ago. What I have found from Parker is that many of the Rhone wines that I found boring and blah in their youth that he had rated highly, eventually evolved beautifully pretty much as he predicted.

He burned me badly in Burgundy though.
quote:
Originally posted by PurpleHaze:
Although I have enjoyed some 2003s for what they are, I can't see them evolving into elegant wines even in 20 years. A small group of us are doing a tasting later this month featuring Leoville Barton, Pichon Baron, Pavie and one other that I forget. Will post impressions.

PH


Im doing the same with a couple of 2001s. It will be fun to compare notes.
According to Robert Parker via twitter:

"Was in Bordeaux for 12 days tasting and retasting the 2009 Bordeaux...After 33 years of doing this, 2009 is the single greatest vintage I have ever tasted...Of course 50-60 of the most prestigious wines cost a small fortune but there are another 500+ wines in my next wine advocate...and many of them are outrageous value for such sumptuous wines."

VM
quote:
Originally posted by Vino Me:
According to Robert Parker via twitter:

"Was in Bordeaux for 12 days tasting and retasting the 2009 Bordeaux...After 33 years of doing this, 2009 is the single greatest vintage I have ever tasted...Of course 50-60 of the most prestigious wines cost a small fortune but there are another 500+ wines in my next wine advocate...and many of them are outrageous value for such sumptuous wines."

VM
Is this good or bad news for lovers of traditional Bordeaux? I recently tried a Napa wine Parker gave 100pts and to my palate is was big, sweet and hot. I know people can be fans of both styles, but I just tread lightly when Parker raves about the really ripe years in Bordeaux.
quote:
Originally posted by Vino Me:
According to Robert Parker via twitter:

"Was in Bordeaux for 12 days tasting and retasting the 2009 Bordeaux...After 33 years of doing this, 2009 is the single greatest vintage I have ever tasted...Of course 50-60 of the most prestigious wines cost a small fortune but there are another 500+ wines in my next wine advocate...and many of them are outrageous value for such sumptuous wines."

VM


I'm no expert, but I certainly didn't like them as much as I liked the 05's at the same stage, and though they showed more poorly at the cheaper end than the 05's were (not that there were many cheapies at the UGC). Might have something to do with the pop and pour...found most closed and bitter...some retried at the end of the night performed much better/more open and expressive, even though I was wasted by that time.
quote:
Originally posted by Machine:
Might have something to do with the pop and pour...found most closed and bitter...some retried at the end of the night performed much better/more open and expressive, even though I was wasted by that time.

From what I saw, you were as likely to get a newly opened bottle at the end of the tasting as at the start. Most estates went thru 3-5 bottles and only opened them as the previous bottle was about half empty.

VM

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