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2010 vintage: fewer potential 100-point scores than 2009 vintage

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Critic Robert Parker revealed his provisional scores for the 2010 vintage this week. A quick look at the best-known estates reveals that the potential 100-point scores are significantly lower than for the 2009 vintage.


According to Parker, "There is no doubt that 2010 is an exceptional new vintage for Bordeaux wines, like the 2009 vintage."

“You can see this in two ways: this news is either tragic or fabulous. But I've tasted enough wines from 2005, 2009 and 2010 to say that these vintages might just be the three best Bordeaux wines I've tasted in my career. »

He awarded 10 estates a potential score of 100 points, including four of the five Premiers Grands Crus. However, a few of the best 2009s were not included: Château Margaux (now at 96-98 points); Château Cos d'Estournel (95-97), whose addition last year created controversy; Château Léoville Las Cases (95-98); Château Léoville Poyferré (95-98); Château Clinet (95-98); the Château L'Evangile (96-98); Château Angélus (94-96+) and Château Pavie (95-98+), among others.

According to an article from the Liv-ex blog, Parker's choice to exclude Château Margaux from the top of the ranking would contradict the opinion of many professionals in the sector.

In addition, two Premiers Grands Crus, Château Haut-Brion and Château Mouton Rothschild, improved their 2009 rating (96) to reach the 98-100 bracket alongside Château Lafite, Château Latour and Petrus, whose ratings have remained unchanged.

And Parker continues his analysis of the two years: “2009 will remain the “pleasant” vintage: more sumptuous, fruity, less acidic, with ascending aromas. »

“2010 is richer in alcohol than 2009 but, paradoxically, the fresh acidity, the lower pH and the imposing tannins allow for better precision on the palate, despite the high alcohol content. Although massive and highly concentrated, the 2010 vintage is also fresh and incredibly pure. In addition, it should benefit from an exceptional longevity. »

According to him, white wines are not to be outdone: “2010 is one of the best vintages for dry white Bordeaux; 2008 is also a good year. »

As Parker unveiled his ratings for 2010, he also re-evaluated the 2008 vintage, lowering some ratings significantly and thus reigniting the controversy at the time that he overrated that vintage, perhaps trying to affix its mark as it had done with that of 1982.

Château Lafite remains the best rated, even though it saw its rating drop from 98-100 to 98 points. Petrus went down from 98-100 to 97 points, Château Latour from 96-98 to 95+, Château Cheval Blanc from 95-97 to 93 and Château Léoville Las Cases from 95-97+ to 93+.

Thanks to its initial ratings, 2008 seemed like an inevitable vintage for investors. These new ratings are likely to be a game-changer.

Source: Rupert Miller
May 5, 2011

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