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Château de Beaulieu discussion


#1

Post your thoughts and opinions on The Society’s Château de Beaulieu offerings here.

There are still two vintages left to buy, the 2008 & 2011.

In the meantime here’s a link to The Society’s informative grower precis on _Ch. De Beaulieu_.


Weekend drinking thread [5th-7th April 2019]
#2

I’m particularly interested to see the effect of adding syrah, especially as it used to be a common addition to the bordeaux blend until the start of the 20th century. Or so I understand.


#3

you know something we don’t…


#4

I love the idea that the first contact from a time-traveller from the next millennium would be on this Community! @MikeFranklin any sporting tips for the next few years?


#5

The wines are such great value and really enjoyed the ones I’ve tried - ‘05, ‘08,’10, and having the ‘09 next weekend.


#6

From the two bottles I tried so far - I would say that Syrah gives it a lovely smokey and ‘meaty’ note, as well as a bit of spice on the finish. It seems a shame, somehow, that it is no longer permitted in Bordeaux blends. I mean - yes to Malbec and Petit Verdot but no to Syrah…?


#7

Agree with you, but I guess that gives the likes of beaulieu a chance to shine.

And whoops, fixed that 29th. I do so hate mobile phone keyboards!


#8

I had a bottle a year or so back, TWS bin ends from Stevenage - it was well made, interesting, quite light & elegant (which I prefer) - ‘lunchtime claret’ perhaps. But I didnt make any notes, so that’s from memory.


#9

I’ve not tried it but syrah in new world ‘Bdx’ blends is quite common and gives a nice spiciness (but many new world Bdx blends without syrah are fruitier and spicier than Bordeaux)


#10

I first tried these wines with a mixed case in 2017, 2 bottles each of the 08, 09, 10. The '08 made the biggest impression back then and gave me the confidence to try the 07, the 05 and an 05 Cuvee de l’Oratoire which were available to buy individually.

What I really liked about them, apart from their quality price ratio, was the vintage variation they displayed and their character. Everyone was just a little bit different, some tasted like a decent Haut-Medoc ( 07 and 08 ), others like a St-Emilion ( 05, 09, 10 ).

As a result, I couldn’t resist the vertical case that was offered recently. So far, I’ve had the 05, 07, 08, 10. This time around, I thought the 10 was the pick of the bunch, a stunning wine for just over a tenner with a few years in front of it yet. The 05 was good too, deep, savoury and another bargain. With hindsight, the 07 and 08 were better in 2017 and that this time around they were showing their age a bit. However, others may well like the tertiary flavours that are now developing. For my tastes, I’m coming to the conclusion that I prefer them about 10 years after the vintage.

Lamb chops and the remains of yesterdays mushroom risotto are on the menu tonight, which seems like an ideal opportunity to pull the cork on the 09.


#11

The 09 was excellent for the outlay too. Like the 10, I thought spicy plummy merlot flavours were to the fore with the other grapes providing seasoning and complexity. Softer and richer than the 10 but lacking the fine acid /tannic structure that wine displayed.

I’m splitting hairs really. This is great for drinking now and once again, to my mind, reflects the nature of the vintage. It also makes me wonder how the assemblage differs from vintage to vintage and to the proportions of the varietals therein ?


#12

So I’m finally home! And my order including the Beaulieu case arrived yesterday! So why not start with that I thought. So I’m beginning with the youngest and working my way towards the oldest. Hopefully so I can appreciate how much it improves with age!

So last night I opened the 2011 and, being my first ever Beaulieu, I was blown away by the sheer value for money; this is like a quality Bordeaux (right bank probably closest comparison) with the added complexity of Syrah pepper. Just lovely. I don’t know if anyone noticed but it’s not just the Syrah; on the bottle it is Merlot, Syrah, Malbec, Cab S and Cab F. My notes were:

Very nice if a little young. Fresh black fruit, pepper, cedar and a little too much tannin not yet integrated. Better in a few years but already fantastic value for money. I do think it really needs a few more than 8 years but probably almost there. The '10 will be interesting!


Weekday drinking [23-25 April 2019]
#13

I’m really looking forward to working my way through the remaining 12 bottles I have.

The comments above from Embee & MikeFranklin mirror my experience of the first two bottles I tasted. I’ll try the 07 next, I went for multiples of 05/07&10.

Broadly speaking I’ve found “mid-table” Bordeaux from 07 and 08 have been drinking well for a year or two, whilst the 2005’s are just starting to open up so Embee’s comments above seem to refect the Beaulieu may be the same. There’s a nice ribeye in my fridge looking for a partner.


#14

I started the 2010 last night overlapping it, as I had suggested I might, with the last couple of glasses from the '11. Sadly the '11 has really been open a little too long but it was still good enough to make a direct comparison. Everything from tannins to fruit seemed more intense and more balanced than the '11. The former due to the exceptional vintage and the latter due to the extra year of age maybe? Brambles and pepper on the nose. On the palate, black fruit, pepper and cedar. Tannins and acidity still there but just a little better integrated. Overall very very nice and maybe just a little more refined than the '11.

Very much looking forward to comparing the '10 with the '09.


Weekend drinking thread [03-06 May 2019]