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Chateau Margaux 2011

Bordeaux Red Blends from Margaux, Bordeaux, France
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750ML / 13% ABV
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750ML / 13% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Cabernet Sauvignon largely dominates with 86% of the blend. This year it is uncommonly strong, vigorous and fortunately balanced with lots of smoothness. Then comes the Merlot (10%), the Petit Verdot (2%) and the Cabernet Franc (2%). Chateau Margaux 2011 is the most concentrated wine they have ever produced. And yet, one will barely notice its tannins.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
A solidly structured wine, it is both elegant and intensely powerful. It is disclosing its fruitiness slowly, at the moment dense and concentrated. A restrained edge provides complexity and balance. It will need aging, so don’t drink before 2022.

Cellar Selection

WS 94
Wine Spectator
This has a restrained core of steeped plum, blackberry and anise, studded with tobacco and roasted cedar notes. The structure is silky but persistent, with an almost-succulent feel through the finish, while warm bergamot, singed cedar, vanilla and sanguine hints define the finish. Discreet today, but shows the balance and precision to unfold slowly with cellaring.
JS 94
James Suckling
Fabulous aromas of flowers with hints of strawberries and currants. Extremely aromatic. This is full-bodied, with chewy tannins and a racy finish. It is very finely structured but chewy and austere. I like the tension to this.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The renowned Chateau Margaux’s 2011 boasts a dark ruby/plum color as well as a fragrant perfume of spring flowers, sweet, supple, well-integrated tannins, medium body, and the elegance and nobility expected from a great first-growth. Although it is not as powerful or concentrated as the 2009 or 2010 (no 2011s are), it possesses finesse, elegance, purity and suppleness. The wine is surprisingly approachable already yet should keep for 15-20 years.
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Chateau Margaux

Chateau Margaux

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Chateau Margaux, France - Other regions
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Chateau 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 Chateau 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.

CVY4034B1_2011 Item# 129126