Chateau Beaulieu Comtes de Tastes – 2009: One of the Best Values of a Great Vintage in Bordeaux

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 The Chateau Beaulieu
Comptes de Tastes Label

They’re here. The 2009 Bordeaux are just starting to arrive.

Most of the top Bordeaux 2009s are sold-out last year when they were first offered as futures and this would have been also except I just never got around to offering in the flood of releases last summer. Grab a case while we still have this available.

The 2009 Bordeaux vintage Wine Spectator rates a 95-98 for the Right Bank and describes as, “rich and powerful yet round and friendly, with velvety texture and loads of fruit,”

This is the vintage we have been clearing space in the cellar for,. The vintage Robert Parker started a fire storm of demand for when he wrote, “some of the greatest wines I have tasted in 32 years,” one of the greatest vintages of our lifetimes – it’s here.

Kick it off right with Beaulieu Comtes de Tastes 2009.

Robert Parker raves about this Right Bank estate:

“This is one of Bordeaux’s finest run over-achievers.”

Wine Spectator bestows a whopper of a rating: 88-91, reviewing this gem as, “A minerally and fruity wine, but subdued and balanced. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a long finish. Score range: 88-91 -JS” – Wine Spectator

Parker liked this Bordeaux Superieur wine so much that he selected it for inclusion in his book Robert Parker’s Wine Bargains: The World’s Best Wine Values Under $25. “…this sensational wine exhibits excellent texture, medium body, and soft tannins and is a beauty to enjoy over 5-6 years.”

This is the wine that everyone is looking for – a 2009 Bordeaux with incredible taste and quality for a price you can pull the cork on everyday.

Chateau Beaulieu is a Bordeaux Superieur with a “try-harder” attitude. To be a Bordeaux Superieur requires conforming to stricter rules of vinification, but Chateau Beaulieu goes way farther than that and turns out a wine that is just as good as many of the much more expensive Classified Growths.

The estate is owned by Guillaume de Tastes. It comprises 25 acres of vineyards in the Entre-de-Mer which is the large region between the Dordogne and Garonne Rivers. The terroir is the ideal combination of limestone and clay with south-facing sloping exposure.

Guillaume invests a lot of money in his property, using new oak (very expensive), green harvesting (passing extra times through the vineyard to cut off grapes to increase the concentration of the remaining grapes and lower the yield), with the hope that his quality would be recognized and over time it would pay off.

Well, when Parker gives you the coveted 90 or over, you know it will pay off and we know that we had better stock up (most wines in this range are twice as expensive) before Guillaume starts collecting on his investment. Maybe two cases?

As talented as Guillaume may be, when Stephane Derenoncourt gets involved in a project, the outcome is certain to be very positive. You’ve heard me talk about Stephane often. He is one of Bordeaux’s finest consultants. He works at Pavie Macquin, and Larcis Ducasse, and Prieure Lichine to name just a handful of estates that have been on fire since his involvement.

I don’t ever hesitate to buy from an estate when I know Stephane has been tending the grapes. He doesn’t try to put his signature on the wine, but instead works hard to understand the style of the terroir.

Beaulieu is not a wine that tries to imitate the old guard Medoc wines with their formidable tannins and wood, but a wine that revels in its silky and fleshy fruitiness. 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Cabernet Franc. 100% GREAT! Cynthia Hurley


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