2009 Cantemerle

Will it age 35+ years? A private client wants to know. It’s between this and Gruaud Larose. I know GL will but not sure about Cantemerle.

Having tasted neither, I would favor Gruaud Larose.

'70 Cantemerle is still pretty nice at age 40, and I wouldn’t be shocked if their recent vintages turn out much better than what they were doing back then. It is one of the only Bordeaux chateaux left on my buy list.

Of course, if 2009 turns out to be another 2003, all bets are off.

And doesn’t Ray have some favorable notes on WWI-era Cantemerles?

Helpful. My client is going to buy 15 cases for some undetermined event in 35 years. GL would be my bet too. But Cantemerle is so great and ages effortlessly. But for the long long haul I’m not sure. Any other ideas on un-spoofed long-aging Bordeaux from 2009 under $75?

He does. Hoping he sees this.

I definitely can’t come up with any suggestion better than Cantemerle which is still a $30 wine. I guess Magdelaine might be available under $75, but not much under.

Something like the capping of the Gulf Oil Leak?

What about GL? I have had really old GL that has been great. Magdelaine is too cerebral I think for this client’s needs.

Ha…no . . .a wedding, graduation party, etc.

What is Talbot going for these days? I have had two stellar bottles of '82 in the past six months.

I haven’t had Gruaud since the 2002, but I know Parker is down on them lately, so they’ve got that going for them, which is nice.

Not sure my weighing in means much. While I’ve had many excellent Cantemerle wines with 50+ years of bottle age including many from off-vintages, with almost all of them coming from Graham Lyons’ cellar sale, I haven’t had any more recent vintage than the '86, which I drank over ten years ago. The obvious question, which I can’t answer, is whether recent vintages, specifically the 2009, bear any resemblance to the Cantemerles of yesteryear. Wish I could be of more help.

From what I remember hearing they do. Last vintage I had was 2002 and it was lovely. As was the 2000.

You’ve been a help as the style has not changed that much, if at all.


I like Talbot very much and don’t remember them being spoofy. The '82 and '86 are lovely wines. Even the '97 was nice.

'05 and '06 Cantemerle are very promising imo and not spoofy at all.

While I dunno if the style is different in comparison to Ray’s oldies, I actually do think the style has changed since the early 2000s. The tannins are much silkier and it appears to reflect a deliberate decision to make an ethereal, feminine wine of the type that would appeal to Burgundy drinkers. The 2005 is much more finessed than the 2000, 1996, or 1995, for example. Those who think wine ages on “structure” might make the case that the newer vintages will not last as long, while those who think wine ages on “balance” can make the case they will last even longer. We’ll have to wait and see.

NB: Parker on the '06: “As I indicated last year, quality has improved dramatically at this estate…” and on the '08: “New owners have done a wonderful job at Cantemerle…”

Code language? Hard to know without tasting, but it certainly sounds indicative of a shift of some kind.

Interesting, this sounds like a good producer to buy. There are still older vintages of it around, so no need to buy on futures, either, just to taste and lay a few down.