An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

Tasting notes, varietals, grapes - anything related to wine
Post Reply
Message
Author
Tom Reddick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1228
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 9:56 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#1 Post by Tom Reddick » May 5th, 2019, 10:08 pm

For two years now, this tasting has been in the works as so many of us wonder what has become of our beloved Chateau Magdelaine. And this past Thursday it finally happened thanks to the generosity of a number of Chateau Magdelaine fans who I will leave to reveal themselves here if they wish. Huge thanks all around to a very generous group of people, plus a splendid home setting with perfect fare for this event. Notes presented in order of tasting, and most wines tasted in pairs.

2014 Chateau Bel-Air Monange

deep purple-red color, heady aromatics with a good bit of oak, sweet plums, intense dark fruits, cloves, on the palate a bit hot for me, good impact and very primary, rather polished in its way- I am not sure the sheer force of the fruit will ever allow this to show the full range of nuance that eventually came with Magdelaine, good length but a bit on the dry side and showing heat as well as raw oak, with time a pure blackberry note emerged along with sharp clove notes.

(***)?, 2030+

2013 Chateau Bel-Air Monange

deep reddish purple color, on the nose the same heavy impact as the 2014 but thinner in breadth and tone, on the palate a curious bready raspberry note, better balanced than the 2014 and with a lighter feel, fruits tending toward the red end of the spectrum, cherries, red clay, hints of bramble with a certain refinement, fine length, good balance, it is better than the 2014 by being more understated and having a lesser share of the distinctly trendy elements that are in a direct contrast with what Magdelaine was all about, in other words- better, but still not inspiring my praise.

(***)+?, 2025+

2012 Chateau Bel-Air Monange

deepish purple red, a heavy nose that is also a bit sharp, blackberries, on the palate that exact same odd bready raspberry note I get on the 2013, the oak is less prominent in volume but more cutting in feel, with time sharp clove notes, no signs of the forest or bramble that is evident even in youth on Magdelaine, good length but already getting quite hard on the back end.

(**)+?, 2028+

2011 Chateau Magdelaine

deep red-purple color, soaring nose of tight cassis and cherry, textured with subtle bursts of bramble and clove, stone notes, on the palate still with some raw edges but the whole package is better integrated than when I had this about 18 months ago, marvelously lively with blueberry, cassis, cherry, rough bramble, with time a wild and piercing note of pure cherry right in the center, violets, fine length and a fine future ahead, tasting this in the context of several other vintages- the exuberance of this vintage is much akin to that of the 2001.

(****)+, 2030+

2010 Chateau Magdelaine

darkest purple red color, brooding and muted nose of dark fruits, intense chalk and clove, on the palate a bit of heat, very primary and showing nothing but a mass of sleek ripe fruit, firm tannins well covered by the fruit core, a very large scaled Magdelaine that will need a great deal of time- and yet it must be noted it has some scary similarities to its younger cousins, oak in proper proportion, fine length and good balance- but time will tell if at maturity it reveals the full degree of subtle detail that is the mark of a great Magdelaine.

(****)?, 2035+

2009 Chateau Magdelaine

bright deep red color, a very ripe nose, cherries, aggressive array of red spectrum fruits, kirsch, on the palate a hint of warmth throughout at first where the 2010 has a small streak of it, ripe and sleek fruit, cherry liqueur, hints of bramble and violets, fine long finish, with time the wine came together nicely and the notes of warmth were largely absorbed into the overall structure, this will be a very ripe vintage for Magdelaine but the presence of floral and forest notes suggest there is not the same risk as with the 2010 of ideal long term development.

(****), 2030+

2008 Chateau Bel-Air Monange

medium purple red color just starting to brick, oak-influenced nose, a bit raw and overpowering of the attractive dark fruits, on the palate a punchy and cuddly cherry and cassis fruit core that remains primary and comes off a bit dull compared to the Magdelaines surrounding it in this tasting, oak a bit intrusive on the palate plus there is a slight iodine quality around the edges, overall this is disjointed and going out of balance- yet frustratingly showing to some degree how lovely it could been if made with a less heavy hand.

**+, ready to drink but should hold

2008 Chateau Magdelaine

I have now had this time 4 times since its release, and to at last try it alongside a number of its siblings spanning 3 decades I am firmly convinced that this is not only the last great vintage for Chateau Magdelaine but will prove in time to be among the finest of its generation.

deepish purple red color, magnificently meaty and lively nose, cherries, cassis, on the palate as generous a showing as I have ever seen though the wine remains very primary and undeveloped, a great breadth of primary fruit richly layered with bramble and white stones expressed with breathtaking precision, a long and intense finish of dark fruits woven into a delicate lace of bracing acids, deceptively approachable for its generous fruit and display of character- but there is a great deal yet to come and this will need a good bit of time to get there.

(*****), 2032++

2007 Chateau Magdelaine

medium bright red color, lovely nose of fruits from the black and red sides of the spectrum, forest floor notes already showing, bramble, on the palate a light to mid-weight fruit with a generous sweet side, already showing beautifully but it has the potential to develop further into a lacey and beautiful luncheon wine, lovely fragrant finish, a more vibrant version of the 1992.

**(**), 2025+

2006 Chateau Magdelaine

good deepish red young color, like the 2008- this is another vintage I have had several times since release, this bottle had a little funk on the nose but also tight notes of cherry and bramble, on the palate this seems to still be growing in scale- it was a mid-weight at release but now is becoming a rather powerful vintage, dark plums, it was starting to get secondary at last tasting and continues to do so- but also seems more closed than I remember, bright red cherry notes with time, excellent length, more impressive with each visit and at this point I would put it ahead of both the 2009 and 2010 for future potential.

(****)+, 2030+

2001 Chateau Magdelaine

good deepish red-purple color, vibrant red cherries on the nose with a steady hum of perky herbal notes, more in the red end of the fruit spectrum and with softer chalk notes than usual, on the palate maturing and- as on the nose- uncommonly lively and even zesty, cherries, good long finish that gets a bit rough- but not quite hard- on the tail end, that may ameliorate to some extent with time but I expect it will always be there in some measure, this will need a good bit of time to fully develop yet is already approachable for its vibrant personality.

***(*), now to 2035+

1998 Chateau Magdelaine

deep purple red color, monolithic and massive nose, totally primary and of grand scale by Magdelaine standards, intense cloves, on the palate this is deceptively approachable like the 2008, cassis, blueberries, light pepper notes, positively electric despite being so closed- the tension is remarkable, superb length that is generous and full throughout the lengthy fragrant aftertaste, a long way to go and in the same class as the 2008 though this will likely be on a grander scale.

(*****), 2030++

1994 Chateau Magdelaine [from a case recently released by Moueix and direct from chateau stocks]

deepish purple color, menthol and bramble on the nose, dark fruits in the background, some hard forest notes on the palate which has a certain hardness that is not as unpleasant as it is on many 94s but is rather more like 84 in being a pure force of structure without such a presence of harsh tannins or acids, large scale structure with light fruit, lot of forest and bramble with time, as with the 84 vintage at the higher end- I think this is a wine to bury in the cellar for a very long time to allow some settling and fading of the structure at which point the fruit and other elements will have become nicely savory in their tertiary stage, no guarantees there- but this is the best balanced 94 I have had and as with wines like 84 Mouton and the 94 DRCs I think it will be most useful with extensive age- served with a strong cheese course or as an after-dinner drink.

**, 2034+

1992 Chateau Magdelaine

medium red color with some bricking, slightly medicinal nose, playful cherries on the palate, a classy light to mid-weight luncheon wine, pretty, light on its feet and well balanced with tertiary underbrush, lively chalk notes, lovely wine and ready to drink- but time in hand.

***, now to 2030

1990 Chateau Belair (Dubois-Challon)

good red and brick maturing color, on the nose plums and dark berries, on the nose and throughout out the palate also a slight hard green note- there was considerable disagreement at the table over the cause of this, many of us- myself included- felt it derived from the oak treatment, it certainly did not ruin or overpower the wine- but was an unusual presence in an otherwise very pleasant mature wine, dark plums and black raspberries, soft oak notes, sweet fruit, good finish though with low acid levels, attractive if not particularly persistent.

***+, now to 2030

1990 Chateau Magdelaine

drinkable but slightly maderised and muted. Not evaluated.

1985 Chateau Magdelaine

medium red color with moderate bricking, violets and stone on the lush and serene nose, red berries, cassis, on the palate spectacular, pure dark berries and cassis, violets and even a suggestion of rose petals- the most floral wine of the night, glowing red fruits deftly dancing with notes of bramble and underbrush, a perfectly balanced and integrated wine with a forest floor coated structure carrying it through to a marvelous finish, at once youthfully beaming and delicately aged, a magnificent claret, as good as it gets.

*****, ready to drink and time in hand, as with 85 Mouton I think this will go on for decades

1975 Chateau Magdelaine

good deepish red color with some bricking, plummy on the nose, very slightly hard- but less so than most 75s I have tried, some sauvage, on the palate quite good and surprisingly youthful in tone despite the full tertiary development of its elements, large scale, fresh, blackberry notes, a broad and ripe pure finish of excellent length, some of the rough and tumble of the vintage sprinkled throughout, but refined in the end and comfortingly vibrant. A great and relatively understated 1975.

*****, now to 2040

1970 Chateau Magdelaine (first bottle corked, this second bottle decanted and served about 15 minutes after)

bricking red color, very assertive bramble and dark thorn on the nose, on the palate fully mature with some metallic and liniment notes, cherry and cassis fruit dominate with an unusual freshness for a 1970 followed by broad and lush layers of forest floor and sedate tertiary underbrush notes, pristine balance, fine length, a very pretty 1970 with time in hand.

*****, now to 2030

1971 Chateau Figeac

good bright red color with some bricking, gorgeous nose of blue mint, dark berry, soft sweet marble, lily pads and petrichor, with time a metallic note developed, in contrast with the Magdelaines tasted this evening- this had a more velvety presentation throughout, blueberry notes with time and where the Magdelaines showed lovely forest and bramble notes- this wine became intensely spicy, a marvelous 1971 on a long and glorious plateau, wonderfully serene despite its numerous delights.

*****, now to 2030+
ITB - Cellar appraisals

Dale Williams
Posts: 1176
Joined: April 27th, 2009, 10:19 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#2 Post by Dale Williams » May 6th, 2019, 5:08 am

Wow, those are notes. I hate to follow that, but these were my impressions:

ith the demise of Ch. Magdelaine and its incorporation into Belair-Monange, Tom and John set up a tasting. Originally set for Dec, we finally convened last night. Tom had sent a case of the younger Magdelaines and some Belair-Monange, the rest of us brought some mature wines for comparison. John hosted, and had a nice spread of cheese and pate/mousse out for us.

As we gathered
2012 Philipponnat Blanc de Noirs Extra Brut- crisp, delicious and long, I really enjoyed, but didn’t know BdN till later. B+/A-. There was also a Ployez-Jacquemart I didn’t try.

On to the reds

2014 Ch.Belair-Monange

Very ripe, a bit kirschy., some nice spice but hot. B-/C+

2013 Ch.Belair-Monange
Raspberry, more structured, some sandalwood and tea. Still pretty ripe. B-

2012 Ch.Belair-Monange
Raspberry, low acid, soft tannins. Vanilla. B-

2011 Ch. Magdelaine (last vintage)
Berries, floral, not so long but I like better than preceding wines. B

2010 Ch. Magdelaine
Big, but balanced, spice, needs time. B+

2009 Ch. Magdelaine
Lots of alcohol., ripe red fruit, menthol/mint, not so attractive now but I’ll hope for improvement (I have 3 mags!). B- for now (some who tasted later said major improvement)

2008 Ch.Belair-Monange
Black plum, vanilla, good acids, structured. B

2008 Ch. Magdelaine
Fresh, bright, cherries and spice, I really enjoy (and happy to see I own a case), A-/B+

2007 Ch. Magdelaine
Red plums, barely any tannin, soft acids for Magdelaine, ready luncheon claret. B/B-

2006 Ch. Magdelaine
A bit closed, with time black plums, smoke, spice/sandalwood. B

2001 Ch. Magdelaine
Bright, lean without being austere, red cherry, delicious. B+/A-

1998 Ch. Magdelaine
Young, needs time, a bit animal, I really enjoy but don’t have, will keep eye open. A-

A break while John worked in kitchen
2013 Trimbach Clos Ste. Hune (mag)
Ginger, pear, smoke, sweet fruit though dry wine. Feels like it should age well, but quite enjoyable now. A-/B+

Beef stew with Brussels sprouts and orange zest

1994 Ch. Magdelaine
Some tannin, acid doesn’t seem totally integrated, a touch clipped, but nice in an austere/herby way. B/B-

1992 Ch. Magdelaine

This tasted like a nice stemmy Burg (others thought Cab Franc). Red cherry, a little coffee, herbs. Quite an achievement for the vintage. B

1990 Ch. Magdelaine

Off bottle NR

1990 Ch.Belair (Dubois-Challon)
Tannic, herby, some good black plum fruit. This must have been heavily filtered as zero sediment. Some liked less than I (and others more). B/B+

1985 Ch. Magdelaine
Perfumed, perfect balance, beautiful elegant and classic. A/A-

1975 Ch. Magdelaine
Ferric, black cherry, earth, A-

1970 Ch. Magdelaine
Corked! Luckily Tom had some there he had purchased from a mutual friend. Great replacement bottle- red and black cherries, smoke., citrus zest. Long and balanced. A-/A

Blind wine from Jayson
Victor got vintage quickly, took us a bit to get wine. Wild menthol meets garrigue nose, cocoa powder, black raspberries. Lovely. 1971 Ch. Figeac A-

2001 Fritz Haag Brauneberger Juffer-Sonnenuhr Riesling Beerenauslese
This was fine but I really couldn’t concentrate (packing up glasses to go)- a bit of a waste after all of these wines. A bit softer acids than I expected from year, but really I missed taking notes here.

Really fun night with really generous and fun group. Some varied opinions,but pretty sure no one thought the Belair-Monange were a step up from Magdelaine. Still, will be interested to see how those wines age. But will always lament the loss of Magdalaine.


Grade disclaimer: I'm a very easy grader, basically A is an excellent wine, B a good wine, C drinkable. Anything below C means I wouldn't drink at a party where it was only choice.Furthermore, I offer no promises of objectivity, accuracy, and certainly not of consistency.

User avatar
Neal.Mollen
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 32756
Joined: January 30th, 2009, 1:26 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#3 Post by Neal.Mollen » May 6th, 2019, 5:31 am

Amazing notes! I had the chance to buy the 2011 Mag at something close to $50 per and passed up on it, but I think my buddy Alfert bought them all, so they went to a fine home
I don't have to speak; she defends me

A drunkard's dream if I ever did see one

User avatar
Robert.A.Jr.
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 20507
Joined: January 28th, 2010, 5:03 am
Location: Orlando, Florida

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#4 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » May 6th, 2019, 5:32 am

Awesome evening, now that’s a tasting I would have loved to join! I actually have a few vintages not represented. Your notes really capture the essence of this wine, and the change in the property and style. I no longer buy.

It’s fascinating to experience a classic, nuanced, balanced wine, and trusting its ability to mature and evolve gracefully. I had a 1966 not too long ago that was stunning.

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

User avatar
Robert.A.Jr.
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 20507
Joined: January 28th, 2010, 5:03 am
Location: Orlando, Florida

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#5 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » May 6th, 2019, 5:32 am

Neal.Mollen wrote:
May 6th, 2019, 5:31 am
Amazing notes! I had the chance to buy the 2011 Mag at something close to $50 per and passed up on it, but I think my buddy Alfert bought them all, so they went to a fine home
I did indeed grab them, and truly appreciated the lead!!

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

User avatar
dcornutt
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 9832
Joined: February 12th, 2009, 4:19 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#6 Post by dcornutt » May 6th, 2019, 5:37 am

Fabulous notes. Those old Figeacs are so special.
DON Cornutt

"Before you eat or drink anything, carefully consider with whom you eat or drink rather than what you
eat or drink,because eating without a friend is the life of the lion or the wolf." Epicurius

PCLIN
Posts: 1322
Joined: August 3rd, 2013, 9:45 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#7 Post by PCLIN » May 6th, 2019, 6:11 am

Thanks for those notes, references for future buying.
Chiu Lin

User avatar
Mark Golodetz
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 5966
Joined: May 29th, 2009, 8:49 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#8 Post by Mark Golodetz » May 6th, 2019, 6:26 am

Magdelaines are pretty special, and one of the great old fashioned Saint Emilions. I have a feeling that this is going to become a rare beast indeed, as people realize that there are, in fact, very few old fashioned Saint Emilions, and they are not being made an more. That being said, I have enough Magdelaine to take this with a grain of salt.
Last edited by Mark Golodetz on May 6th, 2019, 6:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
ITB
I could agree with you, but then we both would be wrong.

User avatar
Jay Miller
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 13696
Joined: June 19th, 2009, 5:18 pm
Location: Jersey City

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#9 Post by Jay Miller » May 6th, 2019, 6:35 am

Thank you both for the excellent notes! Since I own a fair number of those Magdelaine vintages they'll be quite useful in the future.
Ripe fruit isn't necessarily a flaw.

User avatar
Ramon C
Posts: 3548
Joined: October 23rd, 2010, 6:34 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#10 Post by Ramon C » May 6th, 2019, 3:48 pm

Jay Miller wrote:
May 6th, 2019, 6:35 am
Thank you both for the excellent notes! Since I own a fair number of those Magdelaine vintages they'll be quite useful in the future.
+1. I've a few, as well.
@brera

User avatar
Pat Martin
Posts: 2553
Joined: May 22nd, 2011, 11:38 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#11 Post by Pat Martin » May 6th, 2019, 4:25 pm

Great stuff. It’s threads like these that first got me into Magdelaine (and Canon). Love the stuff, too bad it’s gone.

Prices have continued to creep up. I recall when K&L had the 2008 for $44 in late 2012, and I foolishly only grabbed 4 bottles.
P@ tr!ck M 8rt!n

User avatar
Arv R
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 3575
Joined: January 11th, 2015, 3:53 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#12 Post by Arv R » May 7th, 2019, 10:12 pm

very impressive. i've gotten the 'metallic / tuna fish can tang' from 1970 a couple of times before too.
R_@_0

User avatar
Claus Jeppesen
Posts: 1627
Joined: April 27th, 2010, 2:42 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#13 Post by Claus Jeppesen » May 8th, 2019, 2:09 am

You are certainly right about important. Thanks a lot
Re the 1994. Please forgive it. If you taste it after 24 hours exposure in a half full bottle it is far more open and giving, even pleasant
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=160519&p=2726472
Claus

Riesling and Slate

Karl K
Posts: 1119
Joined: October 29th, 2016, 10:01 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#14 Post by Karl K » May 8th, 2019, 5:03 am

Thanks for the notes. I have had the 70 and have more bottles. Thinking about popping a 98 for experimentation as I need more exposure to younger versions of the wine.
K a z a k s

User avatar
Mark Golodetz
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 5966
Joined: May 29th, 2009, 8:49 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#15 Post by Mark Golodetz » May 8th, 2019, 7:26 am

Karl K wrote:
May 8th, 2019, 5:03 am
Thanks for the notes. I have had the 70 and have more bottles. Thinking about popping a 98 for experimentation as I need more exposure to younger versions of the wine.
Strange to think of a 21 year led Bordeaux as “younger” but that is certainly a hallmark of the property; they drink young.
ITB
I could agree with you, but then we both would be wrong.

User avatar
Claus Jeppesen
Posts: 1627
Joined: April 27th, 2010, 2:42 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#16 Post by Claus Jeppesen » May 8th, 2019, 9:02 am

Mark Golodetz wrote:
May 8th, 2019, 7:26 am
Karl K wrote:
May 8th, 2019, 5:03 am
Thanks for the notes. I have had the 70 and have more bottles. Thinking about popping a 98 for experimentation as I need more exposure to younger versions of the wine.
Strange to think of a 21 year led Bordeaux as “younger” but that is certainly a hallmark of the property; they drink young.
The 2000 is certainly a baby still
Claus

Riesling and Slate

User avatar
Pat Martin
Posts: 2553
Joined: May 22nd, 2011, 11:38 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#17 Post by Pat Martin » May 8th, 2019, 12:46 pm

I am thoroughly digging the 2000 Magdelaine these days. Still has lots of room to grow, but it’s really tasty as is, not hard or closed at all. It is hard to keep my hands on my stash.
P@ tr!ck M 8rt!n

Karl K
Posts: 1119
Joined: October 29th, 2016, 10:01 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#18 Post by Karl K » May 8th, 2019, 2:53 pm

Re metallic tastes I started a thread on this in Dec 2016 (don’t know how to link from my phone) and most agreed the taste comes from Brett.

Howard said it is from over the hill wines.

I had noticed it from early 70s Bordeaux.

And yes 21 may seem old to say young but I have a predilection for pushing to the older side.

Hence trying to counteract by trying a 98.
K a z a k s

Jayson Cohen
Posts: 1779
Joined: July 9th, 2016, 4:29 pm
Location: New York, NY

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#19 Post by Jayson Cohen » May 8th, 2019, 11:39 pm

Arv R wrote:
May 7th, 2019, 10:12 pm
very impressive. i've gotten the 'metallic / tuna fish can tang' from 1970 a couple of times before too.
Old Magdelaine can have a metallic hint when opened - this bottle didn’t get air because of the corked bottle. I didn’t get any metallic hint after the first 5 minutes from this bottle.

PCLIN
Posts: 1322
Joined: August 3rd, 2013, 9:45 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#20 Post by PCLIN » May 9th, 2019, 2:02 am

Not that there is anything wrong with it but seems like always the same few of us actually have interest in Magdelaine. [stirthepothal.gif]
Chiu Lin

Jayson Cohen
Posts: 1779
Joined: July 9th, 2016, 4:29 pm
Location: New York, NY

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#21 Post by Jayson Cohen » May 9th, 2019, 5:24 am

PCLIN wrote:
May 9th, 2019, 2:02 am
Not that there is anything wronig with it but seems like always the same few of us actually have interest in Magdelaine. [stirthepothal.gif]
I hope we can keep it that way. Prices are already rising.

Tom Reddick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1228
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 9:56 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#22 Post by Tom Reddick » May 9th, 2019, 10:35 pm

Claus Jeppesen wrote:
May 8th, 2019, 2:09 am
You are certainly right about important. Thanks a lot
Re the 1994. Please forgive it. If you taste it after 24 hours exposure in a half full bottle it is far more open and giving, even pleasant
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=160519&p=2726472
Greetings Claus,

Wow- I had not seen your thread. Pretty cool that two people here had the same "off vintage" (and a hard to find one at that) about the same time.

And fear not- I not only forgive it, but embrace it. That was one of my bottles and I was the crazy guy who got the case direct from Moueix precisely because I had hoped the wine would prove useful for certain limited purposes. I have to give it 2 stars in the grand scheme of things- and in a blind tasting with other wines it would get throttled pretty soundly- but it does have a future use, and will be special in its way.

To everyone else- thank you for the kind words. It was an amazing night for me- to have so many vintages of one of my favorite wines of all time in one sitting, and a nice mix of vintage styles and reputations as well. My brain was on overdrive writing those notes.

On the market situation- with the generally known disclosure that I have a large stash of Magdelaine and have been adding to it avidly and thus could be seen to have a financial interest in any advice- I can tell you that the market is finally picking up in the past 12-18 months, and fairly quickly.

The days of readily finding good vintages of Magdelaine for $50 a bottle are over. $80-100 is the new general baseline for good vintages, and $150+ for the best vintages. I am also noticing that the wines are moving more briskly through the marketplace when they come up for sale.

I do not think the current activity and pricing levels will change all that much in the next couple of years from where they are now, but 10 or 15 years down the road- especially given the incredible longevity of the wines- I do believe there is Engel or Gentaz potential here.

And so I buy- mainly to have the supplies to enjoy this wine for the rest of my life on a regular basis, but more secure in knowing that if for any of a number of reasons I feel compelled to sell some portion of my holdings, I am not going to lose money.
Last edited by Tom Reddick on May 9th, 2019, 10:52 pm, edited 2 times in total.
ITB - Cellar appraisals

Tom Reddick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1228
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 9:56 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#23 Post by Tom Reddick » May 9th, 2019, 10:50 pm

Mark Golodetz wrote:
May 8th, 2019, 7:26 am
Karl K wrote:
May 8th, 2019, 5:03 am
Thanks for the notes. I have had the 70 and have more bottles. Thinking about popping a 98 for experimentation as I need more exposure to younger versions of the wine.
Strange to think of a 21 year led Bordeaux as “younger” but that is certainly a hallmark of the property; they drink young.
Agreed. While I think they are accessible much sooner, from a long term maturity/plateau perspective I am learning to have a very Lafleur mentality when it comes to Magdelaine. That was unexpected.
ITB - Cellar appraisals

User avatar
dcornutt
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 9832
Joined: February 12th, 2009, 4:19 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#24 Post by dcornutt » May 10th, 2019, 4:48 pm

I haven't been collecting Magdelaine but that is obviously my error. These wines sound delicious.
DON Cornutt

"Before you eat or drink anything, carefully consider with whom you eat or drink rather than what you
eat or drink,because eating without a friend is the life of the lion or the wolf." Epicurius

NJBruce
Posts: 336
Joined: October 17th, 2009, 8:09 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#25 Post by NJBruce » May 10th, 2019, 9:03 pm

Probably a dumb question, but was your host 'John' John Gilman, whose next issue of VftC is due to report on the 'merger' of Magdelaine and Belair?
Nigel Bruce
Hong Kong

Tom Reddick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1228
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 9:56 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#26 Post by Tom Reddick » May 11th, 2019, 12:26 am

NJBruce wrote:
May 10th, 2019, 9:03 pm
Probably a dumb question, but was your host 'John' John Gilman, whose next issue of VftC is due to report on the 'merger' of Magdelaine and Belair?
Correct. He and I have been planning to do this for quite a while. No mystery intended- I just don't like naming everyone at a tasting in an online forum of any kind unless I ask first since not everyone will be a regular poster or even a member. And we got too absorbed in the night for me to ask anyone.
ITB - Cellar appraisals

NJBruce
Posts: 336
Joined: October 17th, 2009, 8:09 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#27 Post by NJBruce » May 11th, 2019, 12:20 pm

Hi Tom,
Glad to hear that - I'm looking forward to that article. I'm fortunate to have intact cases of the 1970, 1985, 1998 and 2008 - all bought following John's earlier reviews. All seem to have performed well at your event.
Nigel
Nigel Bruce
Hong Kong

Tom Reddick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1228
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 9:56 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#28 Post by Tom Reddick » May 12th, 2019, 9:05 pm

NJBruce wrote:
May 11th, 2019, 12:20 pm
Hi Tom,
Glad to hear that - I'm looking forward to that article. I'm fortunate to have intact cases of the 1970, 1985, 1998 and 2008 - all bought following John's earlier reviews. All seem to have performed well at your event.
Nigel
That is a good set of cases to have. Nice find on the 1985. I have never been able to locate the wine- but following the tasting I undertook a very aggressive search that yielded 9 bottles, along with several each of the 1987 and 1989.

I am going to wait and see how things go this fall, but if I can interest the group again- I would be all for going back to the 80s-00s and doing a round 2 for every vintage we did not taste this time. If I can track down some 80, 81, 83 and 84- we will have all the bases covered I think.
ITB - Cellar appraisals

John Gilman
Posts: 555
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 10:46 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#29 Post by John Gilman » May 15th, 2019, 5:42 am

Thanks Tom for making the tasting happen- it was a great lineup and lots of fun to compare the younger vintages of Belair-Monange and Magdelaine. Mark Golodetz had offered a bottle of the 2009 Belair-Monange to include in the lineup, but I had passed, figuring that we already had way too many bottles for one night (which was true, but not all that evident when I went to empty out the open bottles the next morning and found that many had already been emptied the night before!), but wish I had said "yes" to him now, just so we could have had it in the lineup for comparison's sake. The contrast between the two properties was very dramatic, as was the contrast between the newer Belair-Monange and the 1990 Belair Dale brought, and it was a real eye-opener for me, as I had expected very different results. I think we all came away with the impression that it was a terrible idea to plow Magdelaine into Belair-Monange (at least the way the latter wine is being made right now), though I would suspect none of us thought this going into the evening. A lot of food for thought came out of that tasting... The bottom line seems to be that everyone who loves classically-styled Bordeaux would be very well-served to be scouring the market for extant bottles of Magdelaine, as it may well prove to be a far more savvy investment than chasing the hype machine on the 2018 Bordeaux vintage.

User avatar
Robert.A.Jr.
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 20507
Joined: January 28th, 2010, 5:03 am
Location: Orlando, Florida

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#30 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » May 15th, 2019, 5:47 am

3, 2, 1 . . . .

WineSearcher is currently frozen . . . .

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

User avatar
Neal.Mollen
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 32756
Joined: January 30th, 2009, 1:26 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#31 Post by Neal.Mollen » May 15th, 2019, 6:09 am

Turns out I actually own 3 bottles of the 2008 Belair-Monange, bought I don't know when, from I don't know who, for reasons I can't recall. I am confused by Tom's note above; both still primary but ready to drink? Is it your assessment that it will never develop anything other than the primary flavors it offers now?

I suppose I should find these and drag them into the drink now holding pen.
I don't have to speak; she defends me

A drunkard's dream if I ever did see one

John Gilman
Posts: 555
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 10:46 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#32 Post by John Gilman » May 15th, 2019, 6:23 am

Hi Neal,

I should not be answering for Tom, but my impression was that the 2008 Belair-Monange was still not ready to drink and I would leave my bottles alone for at least another eight to ten years. Whether or not it will develop more classical layers of secondary complexity remains to be seen, as it was not showing them at our tasting, but they could (in theory) still be lurking below the surface. It is the Moueix family's first vintage in complete control of the property, so interesting for historical purposes at the very least. But, it is still too young for primetime drinking to my palate. It was my favorite vintage that we tasted from Belair-Monange, but it was rather dwarfed by the '08 Magdelaine served alongside of it...

All the Best,

John

Jayson Cohen
Posts: 1779
Joined: July 9th, 2016, 4:29 pm
Location: New York, NY

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#33 Post by Jayson Cohen » May 15th, 2019, 6:27 am

John Gilman wrote:
May 15th, 2019, 6:23 am
It was my favorite vintage that we tasted from Belair-Monange, but it was rather dwarfed by the '08 Magdelaine served alongside of it...
Bottom line : This^

Tom Reddick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1228
Joined: June 30th, 2009, 9:56 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#34 Post by Tom Reddick » May 15th, 2019, 7:41 pm

John Gilman wrote:
May 15th, 2019, 6:23 am
Hi Neal,

I should not be answering for Tom, but my impression was that the 2008 Belair-Monange was still not ready to drink and I would leave my bottles alone for at least another eight to ten years. Whether or not it will develop more classical layers of secondary complexity remains to be seen, as it was not showing them at our tasting, but they could (in theory) still be lurking below the surface. It is the Moueix family's first vintage in complete control of the property, so interesting for historical purposes at the very least. But, it is still too young for primetime drinking to my palate. It was my favorite vintage that we tasted from Belair-Monange, but it was rather dwarfed by the '08 Magdelaine served alongside of it...

All the Best,

John
Well said John. For my part- I do not think the wine is going to develop those classic layers, or at least that when it happens the structure and fruit will overwhelm them, and that is why- if they were my bottles- I would opt to drink them young. Time will tell, but I think for pure drinking pleasure- now is better than later. But the wines will surely develop more- that I will readily concede.

And on your note above- thank you as well for being the perfect partner in crime. Noone else could have really pulled together all the right people with great bottles to make this happen. It was an incredible tasting- maybe even an important one :)
ITB - Cellar appraisals

Karl K
Posts: 1119
Joined: October 29th, 2016, 10:01 pm

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#35 Post by Karl K » May 15th, 2019, 8:00 pm

Definitely an important WB thread.
K a z a k s

User avatar
Craig G
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 14267
Joined: March 6th, 2011, 10:57 am
Location: Town of Cats

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#36 Post by Craig G » May 15th, 2019, 8:20 pm

I haven’t tried to jump on the Magdelaine bandwagon but I did buy three bottles of 1992 last year when JJ Buckley listed it, as it’s my older daughter’s birth year and she likes red wine. I’m very pleased to read your note.
“You need to look down to the bottom shelf where they keep the Fighting Cock” — Corey N.

C. Gle@son

User avatar
Claus Jeppesen
Posts: 1627
Joined: April 27th, 2010, 2:42 am

Re: An important tasting of Chateaux Magdelaine and Bel-Air Monange, 1970-2014 with a 1971 Figeac "ringer"

#37 Post by Claus Jeppesen » May 16th, 2019, 7:03 am

John Gilman wrote:
May 15th, 2019, 5:42 am
Thanks Tom for making the tasting happen- it was a great lineup and lots of fun to compare the younger vintages of Belair-Monange and Magdelaine. Mark Golodetz had offered a bottle of the 2009 Belair-Monange to include in the lineup, but I had passed, figuring that we already had way too many bottles for one night (which was true, but not all that evident when I went to empty out the open bottles the next morning and found that many had already been emptied the night before!), but wish I had said "yes" to him now, just so we could have had it in the lineup for comparison's sake. The contrast between the two properties was very dramatic, as was the contrast between the newer Belair-Monange and the 1990 Belair Dale brought, and it was a real eye-opener for me, as I had expected very different results. I think we all came away with the impression that it was a terrible idea to plow Magdelaine into Belair-Monange (at least the way the latter wine is being made right now), though I would suspect none of us thought this going into the evening. A lot of food for thought came out of that tasting... The bottom line seems to be that everyone who loves classically-styled Bordeaux would be very well-served to be scouring the market for extant bottles of Magdelaine, as it may well prove to be a far more savvy investment than chasing the hype machine on the 2018 Bordeaux vintage.
Thanks John. I have in a while been planning to buy more Magdelaine, but this was the catalysator.
Could not resist [cheers.gif]
Claus

Riesling and Slate

Post Reply

Return to “Wine Talk”