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  • Writer's pictureKate Simpson

VIRTUAL TASTING: Bordeaux 2005

Updated: Jan 20, 2023

What better way to kick off 2022 than with a tasting of Bordeaux from a top-rated vintage?! Tonight we tasted a selection of growth wines from both the Left Bank (Margaux, Haut-Medoc, Pauillac, Passac-Leognan, St.Julien) and the Right Bank (Pomerol and St. Emilion) of the Gironde River.

Toronto Vintners Club tasted this exact set of wines in September 2019, which seems an absolute age ago from where I sit here in January 2022. But you can see the summary from that night to see how the nose and palate of these wines have developed since then. Comparing the scores from 2019, but with another couple of years in the bottle, proved fascinating particularly for the members that attended both and kept their tasting notes!

When the 2005 vintage arrived, it was considered one of the greatest of the previous 50 years. Many of the producers knew from the outset that they had an outstanding vintage as the growing season was considered ideal. A healthy flowering and good berry set followed by a summer of sunny days and cool nights. As warm, sunny days ripened the fruit, cool evenings ensured the acidity remained at good levels. August and September remained dry and clear, which allowed the producers to take their time to pick the grapes. The result being they could pick them at the perfect time.

Derek Kranenborg, Founder & Principal at All the Right Grapes, a premium wine import agency, was our guest speaker for the evening.

Tonight there seemed to be a patchwork of exceptional characteristics in the different wines. One had great acidity, one had great tannins, another had great fruit. There were some definite favourites from the selection but with the request for food (our mouths watering with talk of steak) to really enjoy them, and for most they needed to be decanted earlier or some extensive swirling in the glass before they properly opened.

Derek would prefer another minimum of 5 years before they'd be ready for his palate as 16-year-old claret from estates such as these is a little young for him. I think there was some agreement from the members on this.

To make up for the restricted movement in the world right now, one of the Directors created a Google road trip from Pomerol (A) to Pauillac (H). This road trip represents the pouring order of this month's wines too. Such a pity we weren't able to drive the route through France, stopping at each of these beautiful domaines along the way.

Here are the full scores from the evening:

And see the original tasting notes for these eight wines below:

Download PDF • 114KB

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