Le Carre 2009
Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Emilion, Bordeaux, France
Le Carre is a single-vineyard of just over one and a half hectares that abuts Clos Fourtet near the centre of the town of Saint Emilion. The wine is a dense purple color. Abundant quantities of black fruits, crushed rocks and flowers nicely wrapped in new oak, where it receives it's malolactic fermentation and aging. Whilst the main part of the wine is made up by Merlot, there is also a Cabernet Franc compliment.
Blend: 80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc
The Wine Advocate - "Achieving nearly 15% natural alcohol (one of the highest of the Jonathan Maltus St. Emilion estates) , this blend of approximately 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc is from vineyards that sit on limestone soils near Clos Fourtet, an area that performed brilliantly in 2009. Inky purple, with notes of graphite, vanillin, blackberry and cassis as well as crushed rock and floral notes, the wine has breathtaking extravagance and a luxuriant fruit quality that simply has to be tasted to be believed. Phenomenally rich, full-bodied, and brilliantly poised and well-balanced, this is a tour de force in winemaking and a colossal Le Carre, the finest Jonathan Maltus has yet produced. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2028."
Wine Spectator - "This is densely layered, displaying a creamy edge that makes the plum sauce, roasted fig and blackberry paste flavors seem accessible now, but the dense bittersweet cocoa and blueberry reduction notes add grip on the finish, and will require cellaring to meld fully. Best from 2014 through 2026."
International Wine Cellar - "Full medium ruby. High-pitched aromas of blackberry, graphite, mocha, crushed stone and sexy smoky oak, all lifted by a violet perfume. Densely packed and very fine-grained, with lovely limestone energy lifting the dark fruit, graphite and licorice flavors. Tactile, intense, mineral-driven wine with a suavely tannic finish featuring excellent lift and some exotic oak tones."
James Suckling - "Blueberries and plums, with hints of sweet tobacco and orange peel follow through to a full body, with chewy tannins and a lightly toasted oak undertone and ripe fruit. Excellent wine from the same owners as Le Dome. Try after 2016."
Wine Enthusiast - "Low yields give a very concentrated wine, with the darkest tannins and black fruits. It’s a powerhouse of ripeness, spiced with wood and layered with acidity. As it ages, it will show a rich roundness, the tannins integrating into the open texture."
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Le Carre Winery
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About St-Emilion(saint eh-meel-YOHN)
A region named after the charming, quaint historical town in Bordeaux, St-Émilion is situated on the right bank of Bordeaux. It's grapes of choice are Merlot and Cabernet Franc (called Bouchet on the right bank). The region has its own classification system, updated and revised every few years. Two of the hottest chateaux of the area (and the only Premier Grand Cru Classé A) are Chateau Ausone and Chateau Cheval Blanc.
St.-Émilion produces the most wine on the right bank of Bordeaux. As most of its wine is based primarily on Merlot, St-Emilion wines are described as having finesse and elegance. The best wine of the region can last upward of 10-20 years, like a good left-banker, but many find that the wines here matuer earlier than those based on Cabernet Sauvignon. The soils in the area differ greatly, from gravel to limestone to clay and sand. As a result, the wines of this region are diverse. Quality wines display silky tannins and ripe, soft fruit – the higher quality wine showing full-bodied texture and layers of complexity.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.