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Chateau Margaux 2004

Bordeaux Red Blends from Margaux, Bordeaux, France
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Winemaker Notes

The 1988 vintage of this wine was ranked #6 on the Wine Spectator's Top 10 Wines of 1991

The 2004 was born in conditions closely resembling those of 1996: the same unsettled summer weather, the same early autumn and the same rainy harvest. Last minute rain, though, in no way modifies the body of a wine, nor weakens its muscle; it only takes away a bit of fatness, which gives it a finer silhouette.

Château Margaux 2004 is therefore a great classic vintage. There is great finesse and above all, purity on the nose. In this subtle combination of floral, fruit and spice aromas, all are clearly present but no single aroma dominates. On the palate, the tannic structure is tight-knit, fine and tender. The general impression is firstly balance, precision, freshness and finally an air-light grace which can only be found in great Margaux.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WE 96
Wine Enthusiast
If one of 2004's enduring characteristics is its freshness, then Margaux epitomizes this. It is so deliciously fresh and floating, with great black currant and blueberry fruits, pointed up by spice, mint and a sense of elegance and poise. There’s no doubt about its aging potential either: just feel that heart of firm tannins.
W&S 96
Wine & Spirits
Tasted from barrel in 2005, this wine showed the freshness of the vintage in its bright woodland-berry scent before settling into tannins that felt mineral, powerful and black. Directeur général Paul Pontallier commented at the time, "I consider this to be typical, absolutely, of Château Margaux." Two years on, the wine is definitively Margaux, from the fashionable scent of new oak, to the musculature and vinous strength of the fruit. The sweetness of the fraises des bois and plum seems improbable in the context of a completely dry, concentrated yet ethereal taste that doesn't stop. The wine will taunt you with its delicate, silken power whether you drink it in ten, 20 or 30 years.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
This is lovely, with enticing, velvety plum sauce, macerated red currant fruit, black tea and incense notes that have melded beautifully. This shows a lovely tug of earth at the very end, retaining some grip for further cellaring, despite being approachable now. A lovely wine.
RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2004 Chateau Margaux has always been a promising wine and here, served blind against the First Growths, it finally proved that patience is necessary when it comes to such wines. It has an exquisite bouquet with brilliant delineation, scents of redcurrant, raspberry coulis, cold stone (almost flint-like) with pencil-lead and cedar lending it a Pauillac-like sense of aristocratic flair. The palate is extremely well balanced with a supple opening, nigh perfect acidity with a surprisingly citric undercurrent that lends so much freshness and tension. While it does not have the weight and power of say, 2000, 2005 or 2009, it cruises along with utmost harmony and you become smitten by its charms - something that is perhaps in short supply among the First Growths in this vintage. This is excellent. Tasted September 2016.
JD 93
Jeb Dunnuck
Drinking beautifully, the 2004 Château Margaux (78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, and 4% Petit Verdot) is all about elegance and finesse and has perfumed notes of sandalwood, dried flowers, and sweet red and black fruits all soaring from the glass. With medium body, a silky, seamless texture, ultra-fine tannin, and a great finish, it glides across the palate and is just a joy to drink. While it doesn’t have the weight or richness of a top vintage, it’s a beautiful expression of this estate. Drink it anytime over the coming 10-15 years.
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Chateau Margaux

Chateau Margaux

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Chateau Margaux, France - Other regions
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Château Margaux, a Premier Grand Cru Classé Bordeaux, is one of the most famous wines in the world. Care has been lavished on the property by a line of owners with an abiding concern for the reputation of the estate.

For more than five hundred years, season after season, generations of vineyard-workers, grapeharvesters, cellar-workers, coopers and many other craftsmen have all played a part in making Château Margaux what it is today: a wine with an incomparable personality, reflected in the elegant Palladian building which adorns its label. In 1977, the estate was purchased by the late André Mentzelopoulos, and it is now run by his daughter, Corinne Mentzelopoulos.

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Silky, seductive and polished are the words that characterize the best wines from Margaux, the most inland appellation of the Médoc on the Left Bank of Bordeaux.

Margaux’s gravel soils are the thinnest of the Médoc, making them most penetrable by vine roots—some reaching down over 23 feet for water. The best sites are said to be on gentle outcrops, or croupes, where more gravel facilitates good drainage.

The Left Bank of Bordeaux subscribes to an arguably outdated method of classification but it is nonetheless important in regards to history of the area. In 1855 the finest chateaux were deemed on the basis of reputation and trading price—at that time. In 1855, Chateau Margaux achieved first growth status, yet it has been Chateau Palmer (officially third growth from the 1855 classification) that has consistently outperformed others throughout the 20th century.

Chateau Margaux in top vintages is capable of producing red Cabernet Sauvignon based wines described as pure, intense, spell-binding, refined and profound with flavors and aromas of black currant, violets, roses, orange peel, black tea and incense.

Other top producers worthy of noting include Chateau Rauzan-Ségla, Lascombes, Brane-Cantenac, and d’Issan, among others.

The best wines of Margaux combine a deep ruby color with a polished structure, concentration and an unrivaled elegance.

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Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

MAN86813_2004 Item# 86813