Abeille-Fabre Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc 2010 Vignoble Abeille

Lots of information about the wines marketed as Château Mont-Redon, but not a lot about this particular wine. Château Mont-Redon is owned by Jean Abeille and Didier Fabre, they are the third generation of wine-makers, but already the fourth generation is awaiting. This particular wine is from the Vineyards of Jean Abeille. Château Mont-Redon’s vineyards are 174 ha big, of which a nice 100 ha lies in the AOC Châteauneuf-du-Pape

This white Châteauneuf-du-Pape is a blend of 40% Grenache Blanc, 25% Bourboulenc, 20% Clairette, 10% Picpoul Terret and finally 5% Roussane. Well, not your every day Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, isn’t it! By the way, these numbers may vary with every vintage. Around 450.000 bottles of Châteauneuf-du-Pape are produced annually, of which a hefty 100.000 is of the white variety.s

Abeille-Fabre Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc 2010 Vignoble AbeilleColor: Straw yellow, light.

Nose: Very aromatic, fatty, buttery and nicely fruity. White peach. Mineral but also fruity, white peach in sweet yoghurt. Very appetizing. What I especially like about this one is the slightly industrial, rubbery and maybe gout de petrol like quality this wine has.

Taste: Thick vanilla, wood and warming, what? Warm stones. Mineral and earthy. Slightly waxy and soft lemon juice on top. Gooseberries and grapefruit! Acidity kept in check. Nicely balanced Wine. Vanilla and wood in the nose and now again some vanilla and wood in the taste, this must have seen some wood. Slightly bitter finish, which passes through the mouth leaving a nice taste behind. Well made.

Starts very fruity and aromatic, changes into a more serious nose with petrol. Same with the taste, ending in a slightly wooden bitterness. Not harsh in any way. The finish is long and the bitterness passes into something more woody-fruity and fatty. Fresh butter. High quality. 13.5% ABV. Don’t drink this too cold, when it warms up in your glass it still gives of a lot of aromatics.

Points: 86

Château Les Tresquots Médoc 2003

Very typical Bordeaux blend. This one comprises of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon. The ABV is 13.5%. The grapes were harvested by hand and the wine was put on oak casks for one year.  The grapes that grow on vines are 30 to 40 years old. grow in the heart of the Médoc region near Bégadan, where the D3 crosses the D103 (for those who were there). Saint Estèphe is just up river.

For what I read, people weren’t too happy about this one when is was younger, so it was no problem to let this lie for a couple of years. I left it for almost 10 years, but now it was time to have a look how it is doing.

2003 was a very special year for the region. The 2002 harvest was very dry and the winter that followed was cool and wet. In march it was already warm (and dry) so growth started early. The following period stayed dry which means low yields. The summer, well, heat wave! So in June, July and August, the grapes got roasted.

Color: Very dark, with deep sparkling red. Almost doesn’t let light through.

Nose: It might be heavy, according to the text above, but for me this is quite lively. Grape skin, hot earth, dry but with a lot of depth. Elderberries with some acidity. Yeast and a little hint of sterile wood. Altogether very balanced. I might be biased by now, but this oozes hot weather.

Taste: Deep, this has some tannins. Thick grape skins and plums. Lots of ripe cherries. Not the red ones but the sweetish black ones. It’s not bitter nor woody, but it does dry the mouth quite a bit. The fun is to be had taking big gulps and the effect this has on the palate. Finish is quite short and a bit anonymous. This is very much recommended with food (meat).

In the end not very complex, but with a lovely nose. And I like the shift toward the black cherries. Especially the taste is ‘simple’ but it doesn’t overpower you, nor does it have any other flaws, apart from the tannins that dry your mouth extensively. Considering early report about this wine, I can say that ageing this is a good idea.

Points: 81

Chateau Saint-Paul 2005 Haut-Médoc

I used to drink a lot of reds and for the last six years or so I love to drink a lot of whites. Alsace was probably what set that off. But as you might have guessed, being the frequent reader you are, I drink foremost Scottish Single Malts nowadays. But it’s not all Scotch that lights our world, so I’ll definitely have to try some different things here too. This time the first red wine on Master Quill.

Haut-Médoc is the large southern part of the Médoc district of Bordeaux in the south-west of France. The famous wines from this region are Margaux, Pauillac, Saint-Estephe and Saint-Julien. You might have heard of those.

The wine of choice for today is Chateau Saint-Paul of the 2005 vintage. Saint-Paul is a Cru Bourgeois from the Haut-Médoc (St. Seurin de Cadourne). 2005 was a good year for Haut-Médoc, as it was for the whole of the Bordeaux region. The soil is mostly gravel, chalk and clay. The wine is made of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 48% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc. ABV is 13%.

Color: Ruby red.

Nose: Meaty and sour. Red and dark fruits, berries, black currants and blackberries. Plums maybe? Dust and moist dirt. Floral. In fact it tasted quite thick and sweet (raisins), which it probably is not, still it reminds me a bit of sniffing a ruby port.

Taste: It has depth and is a little sour and powdery. Definitely some wood in here too. Wet leaves, but not earthy. Elderberries, but not bitter. Good tannins which do not take over the wine, still you’ll know from your tongue. It isn’t overly complex, but is has good balance and is a very nice wine to drink. Medium body and medium to long finish.

This one is at it’s best decanted for an hour or so, maybe two. When I tasted this from the just opened bottle, it was quite closed, but a few hours later it showed a lot more. So age this maybe a little longer, decant it properly, then this will be at it’s best.

Points: 85