Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

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Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#1 Post by J a y H a c k » December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm

I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#2 Post by Jeff Leve » December 13th, 2018, 2:57 pm

IMO, very few Cru Bourgeois are better at 20 than they are at 10. You might think differently, but cuz you asked...

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#3 Post by Pat Burton » December 13th, 2018, 2:58 pm

IMO, that quote wasn't made with Cru Bourgeois in mind.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#4 Post by Sc0tt F!tzger@ld » December 13th, 2018, 2:59 pm

I don’t have the Bdx experience of many on WB but I tend to agree with Jeff. I like some fruit with my savory.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#5 Post by Neal.Mollen » December 13th, 2018, 3:02 pm

Depends on the wine, and because it does, the statement in the title is true
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#6 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » December 13th, 2018, 3:03 pm

J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
I suspect that this is rhetorical, you are a very savvy wine drinker.

But yes, that is a silly statement. I like my wine mature, but not all Bordeaux need 20 years, and not all even make it to 20 years. Many Crus are quite approachable and enjoyable 10-15 years out. It can also be vintage-specific; not every vintage produces monolithic wines. Heck, I had a lovely 2009 Lanessan a couple nights ago. I've started popping a lot of 2000s this year, and only the big guns, like Lynch Bages, am I saying, definitely hold on. And that Lynch was gorgeous, but at the price point, at least wait until it is at peak.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#7 Post by Greg K » December 13th, 2018, 3:32 pm

I like my wine on the mature side, but that's dumb. I've been drinking 2004s for years.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#8 Post by Jeff Leve » December 13th, 2018, 3:57 pm

Pat Burton wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:58 pm
IMO, that quote wasn't made with Cru Bourgeois in mind.

You mean this quote from the OP?
J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#9 Post by T. Altmayer » December 13th, 2018, 4:05 pm

I had a 2000 Leoville Barton the other night that would be too young for some here (fortunately a friend brought it for me). It was very enjoyable now with tertiary flavors emerging, although not fully developed. It was not, in any way, infanticide. I think 20-25 years for a good vintage from a good producer is about my sweet spot and while this one would have benefited from a few more years, it was lovely now.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#10 Post by Pat Burton » December 13th, 2018, 5:09 pm

Jeff Leve wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 3:57 pm
Pat Burton wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:58 pm
IMO, that quote wasn't made with Cru Bourgeois in mind.

You mean this quote from the OP?
J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
Jeff, no I meant the quote in the title. :-)
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#11 Post by julianseersmartin » December 13th, 2018, 5:21 pm

It really depends how you like your Bordeaux. I'm in the secondary to tertiary age period so for me, 2000 CB is just about getting there. I would generally agree with the 20 year rule at a minimum although I basically never adhere to it because I'm so impatient. It's easy to enjoy younger bordeaux but even easier to enjoy mature bordeaux.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#12 Post by Collin Dahl » December 13th, 2018, 5:34 pm

J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
I say crack one, and report back. You're uniquely situated to answer this for yourself.

I'd only be worried if I was reading notes by people I have come to trust, writing about wines I own. But I'd be checking in on CB, and I probably would have started a while ago.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#13 Post by Howard Cooper » December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm

Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#14 Post by Jayson Cohen » December 13th, 2018, 5:56 pm

Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
+1

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#15 Post by David Glasser » December 13th, 2018, 6:18 pm

Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
+2. A typically pithy and incisive comment from a Howard.

It does depend on the wine. A lot of CB don’t need 20 years. But many won’t develop the same degree of complexity that the big boys do when given 20 years.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#16 Post by Marc Frontario » December 13th, 2018, 6:33 pm

I have enjoyed quite a few '12 right now
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#17 Post by Steve Saxon » December 13th, 2018, 7:19 pm

I think anything younger than 1990 is too young. In the last couple months I've had 4 Bdx's from 1966-1990 that were drinking great, the two from 96 and 00 needed hours to come around and even then were not nearly as good as the older ones. BTW, the 66 Ducru and 75 PLL were both wonderful.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#18 Post by Craig G » December 13th, 2018, 7:25 pm

Jeff Leve wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:57 pm
IMO, very few Cru Bourgeois are better at 20 than they are at 10. You might think differently, but cuz you asked...
The exceptions can be great, though!
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#19 Post by Brandon J. » December 13th, 2018, 7:38 pm

With most if not all wine rules "it depends" right?

I've been buying cases upon cases of 2005 for $10-$50 and 80% of them are smack in the middle of their perfect drinking window for me. Secondary flavors are developing, there's still plenty of primary fruit, tannins are nicely integrated etc.

If you're acquiring really nice wines, that have serious stuffing, they need more time of course.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#20 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » December 13th, 2018, 7:55 pm

Craig G wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 7:25 pm
Jeff Leve wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:57 pm
IMO, very few Cru Bourgeois are better at 20 than they are at 10. You might think differently, but cuz you asked...
The exceptions can be great, though!
This is true. Can’t recount how many Cris that I’ve had from the 1980s over the past several years, including an 86 Potensac last night. Some great ones, like Meyney, Sociando, Chasse Spleen, La Lagune, La Louviere, Olivier, Lanessan, et al. Still have some in my fridges. But many are also quite enjoyable in that window that Jeff espouses.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#21 Post by Jürgen Steinke » December 13th, 2018, 11:54 pm

The problems begin with the word better. What is better? The wines will be different. If you prefer fully integrated tannins and secondary nuances than many wines are better. If you like power and fruit its better to drink the wines earlier. The really good Crus Bourgeoise like Sociando Mallet, Poujeaux etc. are certainly not over the hill after 20 years when well stored. And wines like Gloria, Meyney, Phelan Segur are not different to Grands Crus IMO.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#22 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » December 14th, 2018, 4:30 am

J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
Which 2000 Cru Bourgeois?

Makes a big difference.

Bordeaux is a region with a huge number of wineries. Generalizations like this point to a very small group of wines.

Let's not even get to the fact that there are people on Cellar Tracker who call wines dead that are barely out of their infancy.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#23 Post by Mark Golodetz » December 14th, 2018, 4:56 am

Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#24 Post by Howard Cooper » December 14th, 2018, 4:57 am

Mark Golodetz wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 4:56 am
Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Yes, cats don’t like wine. neener
What about fatcats? [snort.gif]
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#25 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » December 14th, 2018, 4:59 am

That’s you! #richretiree

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#26 Post by Howard Cooper » December 14th, 2018, 5:02 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 4:59 am
That’s you! #richretiree
And, I like wine!!!!!! [thankyou.gif] [thankyou.gif]

I do realize that I violated my own rule in my post. Sort of like the way Captain Kirk, Spock and Harry Mudd overwhelmed computers in I Mudd. Spock: Everything Harry Mudd says is a lie. Harry Mudd: I am lying.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#27 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » December 14th, 2018, 5:13 am

Norman, Norman...coordinate...
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#28 Post by Julian Marshall » December 14th, 2018, 6:28 am

Far too many Romulan Ale drinkers here, methinks Captain.

For once, albeit with the caveats others have mentioned, I actually agree with Jeff Leve. Gadzooks! Of course there are CBs which drink well and improve after 20 years, but most of them are not really CBs (ie they are the better, more expensive non CCs like Poujeaux, Potensac, SM or Meyney), but otherwise the fun with CBs is that you do not need to wait so long, IMHO.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#29 Post by Kirk.Grant » December 14th, 2018, 6:45 am

J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
I think it is largely dependent on the person and what they want in a wine. I've had Bordeaux from the 60's that tasted young and fresher than an '82 when they were tasted side by side. I've got a bottle from 1990 that's not ready to open yet...but I've got bottles from 2000 and 2005 that I wouldn't mind opening if I was craving something younger. In general I would say that younger Bordeaux can be enjoyable...but I've had more older bottles are unforgettable.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#30 Post by scamhi » December 14th, 2018, 6:54 am

I believe this statement- and don't generally enjoy young Bordeaux. In my Bordeaux group the first check in is at 20 years unless we are doing a specific vertical.

I did taste the 2010 Angelus at a dinner with the brand rep and thought it was fantastic in a cali-cab sort of way.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#31 Post by Gerhard P. » December 14th, 2018, 8:45 am

Simply it depends!

There are a lot of minor Cru Bourgeois that are fine (in a good vintage) between 10 and 15 years ... not likely to get better afterwards ...
but others - I just name Sociando-Mallet, Potensac, Phelan-Segur, Chasse-Spleen, Meney, Poujeaux ... - that are still excellent after 25+ years,
and not to speak of "easy" Bordeaux wines in the price range below 15 € that are meant to be drunk in their first 5-10 years ...

In less that very good vintages it´s still different ...

Just for instance I had 1979 + 1982 Poujeaux, 1985 Potensac, 1989 Meney, 1989 Chasse-Spleen, 1990 Phelan-Segur in the last months - all still fine ...

Moreover: tastes differ a lot - for one person a wine of age 15/20/25 years is a fine aged Bordeaux, for another person it´s over the hill and undrinkable.
I have also to say that many aged wines are not served (imho) properly - pop and pour, not enough air, no slow-oxing, no decanting ... and the wine might be shrill, acidic without any fruit. Open it several hours in advance, wait, decant it carefully 20 min before serving and it might be singing ...
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#32 Post by Pat Burton » December 14th, 2018, 8:52 am

Gerhard P. wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 8:45 am
Simply it depends!

There are a lot of minor Cru Bourgeois that are fine (in a good vintage) between 10 and 15 years ... not likely to get better afterwards ...
but others - I just name Sociando-Mallet, Potensac, Phelan-Segur, Chasse-Spleen, Meney, Poujeaux ... - that are still excellent after 25+ years,
and not to speak of "easy" Bordeaux wines in the price range below 15 € that are meant to be drunk in their first 5-10 years ...

In less that very good vintages it´s still different ...

Just for instance I had 1979 + 1982 Poujeaux, 1985 Potensac, 1989 Meney, 1989 Chasse-Spleen, 1990 Phelan-Segur in the last months - all still fine ...

Moreover: tastes differ a lot - for one person a wine of age 15/20/25 years is a fine aged Bordeaux, for another person it´s over the hill and undrinkable.
I have also to say that many aged wines are not served (imho) properly - pop and pour, not enough air, no slow-oxing, no decanting ... and the wine might be shrill, acidic without any fruit. Open it several hours in advance, wait, decant it carefully 20 min before serving and it might be singing ...
I'd love to hear more on the 89 Meyney.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#33 Post by Steven Orloff » December 14th, 2018, 8:57 am

It is all personal preference. I happen to like Bordeaux with some bottle age. Some people do not. There is no right or wrong here.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#34 Post by lleichtman » December 14th, 2018, 9:06 am

I like many Bordeaux younger rather than older. My wife absolutely abhors tertiary flavors so we drink a lot of them younger. I typically hold my right bank only 10-12 years.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#35 Post by Gerhard P. » December 14th, 2018, 9:09 am

Pat Burton wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 8:52 am

I'd love to hear more on the 89 Meyney.
From memory only ´cause I don´t have my notes on hand:
Last September, fully mature but still strong (from my cool cellar), light bricking rim, dark center, very typical St.Estephe, masculine, ripe Cabernet fruit, soft mature textures still with a nice bite, noticable acidity, spicy with earthy minerally undertones, mouthfilling and long on the palate, perfect dinner wine, 91 points, drink now and over the next 5 years (if in fine condition).
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#36 Post by Pat Burton » December 14th, 2018, 10:57 am

Gerhard P. wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 9:09 am
Pat Burton wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 8:52 am

I'd love to hear more on the 89 Meyney.
From memory only ´cause I don´t have my notes on hand:
Last September, fully mature but still strong (from my cool cellar), light bricking rim, dark center, very typical St.Estephe, masculine, ripe Cabernet fruit, soft mature textures still with a nice bite, noticable acidity, spicy with earthy minerally undertones, mouthfilling and long on the palate, perfect dinner wine, 91 points, drink now and over the next 5 years (if in fine condition).
thank you!
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#37 Post by Howard Cooper » December 14th, 2018, 12:02 pm

A lot of this is very wine specific, as others have said. When they were young, I liked 1979 Leoville las Cases better than 1979 Pichon Lalande. Well, over time the Pichon Lalande kept getting better and better and over time became the superior wine. I probably liked the LLC better young than when it matured. By contrast, the 1982 LLC was great young, closed for many, many years and only recently is getting really great again (and better than ever).
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#38 Post by Neal.Mollen » December 14th, 2018, 12:26 pm

Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Always avoid absolute rules about wine
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#39 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » December 14th, 2018, 12:27 pm

Neal.Mollen wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 12:26 pm
Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Always avoid absolute rules about wine
Always avoid absolutes about anything. The world is grey!

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#40 Post by Mike Grammer » December 14th, 2018, 12:48 pm

Neal.Mollen wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 3:02 pm
Depends on what you want from the wine, and because it does, the statement in the title is true
Added words are mine,

So I concur with the judgment of my brother Mollen for slightly separate reasons [grin.gif]

An expansion on that is my overall wine drinking philosophy. I would almost *always* want to try any wine I have at a young stage, to see that stage of its evolution.

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#41 Post by Mike Grammer » December 14th, 2018, 12:51 pm

Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Your cellar never has enough wine.

In a slightly more serious vein and to a partial point, yes--for me. It is the one rule I live by and I tell others to live by on wine (and I'm not one for rules).

You always buy the wine you like.

That is qualified by me stating that you should always be ready to experiment and try all sorts of different things. But a few people on the forum know that I mostly hate Grenache. There is one bottle of CdP in my cellar. And that's for when I'm invited to a 100 point dinner and need a wine to bring along.
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dsimmons
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#42 Post by dsimmons » December 14th, 2018, 12:52 pm

Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
+3
D o n

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Edward H. Earles
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#43 Post by Edward H. Earles » December 14th, 2018, 12:54 pm

One of my cousins insists upon drinking Bdx young....2 to 3 years in bottle....even the high-end ones. Some folks just like 'em young...

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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#44 Post by Jay Miller » December 14th, 2018, 1:12 pm

Neal.Mollen wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 12:26 pm
Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Always avoid absolute rules about wine
Thank you Mr. Mudd.
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Neal.Mollen
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#45 Post by Neal.Mollen » December 14th, 2018, 1:15 pm

Jay Miller wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 1:12 pm
Neal.Mollen wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 12:26 pm
Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Always avoid absolute rules about wine
Thank you Mr. Mudd.
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Howard Cooper
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#46 Post by Howard Cooper » December 14th, 2018, 4:01 pm

Jay Miller wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 1:12 pm
Neal.Mollen wrote:
December 14th, 2018, 12:26 pm
Howard Cooper wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 5:37 pm
Are there any wine rules starting with never or always that are correct?
Always avoid absolute rules about wine
Thank you Mr. Mudd.
This is a friendly board. You can call him Harecore.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#47 Post by Richard Albert » December 15th, 2018, 8:11 am

I suggest storing those 2000's at 49 degrees and start tasting.
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Arv R
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#48 Post by Arv R » December 15th, 2018, 9:02 am

J a y H a c k wrote:
December 13th, 2018, 2:44 pm
I went in big on Cru Bourgeois 2000 Bordeaux futures and I still have a few cases that I am saving for the 20 year mark, but every time I read CT notes on old Bordeaux, many of them say "tired and over the hill" or "DOA." What say you?
Personally I thought a lot of the smaller wines should be drunk up. Still enjoyable, but were better some years ago. I'm still chewing through plenty too.
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#49 Post by Jeff Leve » December 15th, 2018, 9:21 am

Simply put. The rule is... "It depends."

It depends on the wine, the terroir, the vintage, the blend and as others have pointed out, personal taste.

Storage conditions, cellar temps and the seal of the cork factor into a wines drinking window.

IMO, very few wines NEED 20 years of aging. But there are wines, usually from Pauillac and Saint Estephe in tannic vintages that are still youthful by the time they reach their 20th birthday. When in doubt, refer to the previous statement. :)

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Edward H. Earles
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Re: Is "Never drink a Bordeaux that is less than 20 years old" just a silly idea.

#50 Post by Edward H. Earles » April 7th, 2019, 1:15 pm

2014 Barde-Haut now, not even a decant, and it's kicking butt and taking names. Absolutely drinkable now, although it will age well and gracefully. [cheers.gif] Underappreciated wine that's still in its primary phase.

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