Actually a fascinating retrospective. Overall I was surprised to see so many high ratings for this perhaps under-appreciated right bank producer. Looking at scores over time, for eg., the 1998, here’s how IWC’s reviews changed.
Issue 84 (May/June 1999) - 90 - 93
Issue 90 (May/June 2000) - 92 - 93
Issue 96 (May/June 2001) - 92(+?)
March 2014 - 95
Boom! This wine has gotten a lot better. Or maybe Ian’s palate is different from Tanzer’s. Or bottle variation. Or random decay of the universe.
Interestingly, the 1998 is similarly priced to the 2010 (per wine-searcher) right now.
I pulled a bottle of the 1998 Pavie Macquin [St Emilion] tonight, and its in fabulous shape. I bought this on release, and have had a few bottles over the years, but this might be its best showing. Served at 63F, with a double decant, and removal of light sediment. Medium bodied, garnet hued, and a complex bouquet of sandalwood, tea, mint. The palate is refined, with red fruit, and resolved tannin. Oak and acid are not apparent to me. For my tastes, I think this is even better than it was at age ten, and has rewarded patience. The market has recognized the quality here, and current releases are in the $100+ zone, vs. the $30-$50 zone it was a generation ago. Still, a superb example of complex St Emilion that is not overly merlot driven. Solid A on my scorecard. These were pretty tight and tannic in their youth; that has all melted away now and I can see why critics have been upping their assessments of this. (Both WS and WA also bumped their ratings to mid-high 90’s as well in recent years)