Alain Verset Cornas 2005

90+ points

Dark, bright, lively Cornas. With some meaty aromas very typical of Cornas But fresher acidity than expected. This has a lot going for it, in an authentic not blockbuster style. Very much a vineyard wine. Leave for another 3 years at least.

First bottle slightly corked – returned to retailer.

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Chateaux Ferriere et Palmer 2001

89 points

Margaux. 12.5%

Both consumed together over 2 days.

Ferriere is very attractive but not in the same league as the 2000, less energy and intensity of flavour.

Palmer is marked by obvious but not heavy marcaptan. It’s a rich soft Burgundian style which I believe is not untypical of Palmer.

Palmer did not show well against a far cheaper rival.

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Chateau Giscours 2004

90+ points

Margaux. 13%

Dark, dense, sleek. Modern in a good sense but perhaps a tad extracted though I doubt thus will matter in the long run. And this has a long run in-front of it.

UPDATE (Aug, 2013) – this is really starting to develop complexity.  It doesn’t typify the vintage, it’s a little too big and extracted for that, but it’s turning delicious not just impressive.  My esteem for Chateau Giscours moves up a notch.

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Chateau Rauzan-Gassies 2006

87 points

Margaux, Bordeaux. 12.5%

Raw young claret with tannin, ripe flavours but without any juiciness. New raw French oak, no caramel.

It’s not unreasonable to expect this to improve greatly but it has little charm at present. Lacks fruit.

This 2nd growth has performed below this level for many years. It’s now supposed to be improving. I don’t see anything here yet at 2nd growth level.

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