OUTSTANDING POMEROL &
ETABLISSEMENTS JEAN-PIERRE MOUEIX
Bordeaux Right Bank Specialists
The family firm of Etablissements Jean-Pierre Moueix own many of the finest châteaux on Pomerol’s central plateau as well as Premier Grand Cru Classé Ch. Bélair-Monange in Saint-Émilion. In addition, they manage the vineyards of several other Right Bank châteaux, helping them to produce wines of outstanding harmony, beauty and elegance. Christian Moueix has been the guiding light of the family's progress since his first vintage in 1971. His son Edouard is now taking over, aided by a brilliant team in vineyard and cellar, however Christian remains very much a hands-on owner. Nick Clark and I have been buying wines from the Moueix family uninterruptedly since March 1970, making this our 47th vintage!
Etablissements Jean-Pierre Moueix belongs to classical school of wine making. Their aim is to produce wines which are fully ripe, yet lively, with all elements subtly integrated and with great length of flavour. These wines have the ability to gain smoothness, complexity and silkiness as they mature. They are the antithesis of the black-purple, new-oak dominated, exaggeratedly extracted wines – often made from grapes which have hung so long on the vines they are half-dead when picked – which some misguided commentators continue to praise. Such aberrations are likely to oxidise prematurely, so we steer totally clear of them.
The Story of the Bordeaux 2015 Vintage
We have to look back to 2005, 2009 and 2010 to find such excellent conditions for producing wines in Bordeaux. The flowering took place speedily and in warm, dry weather, between 27th May and 4th June for these properties in Pomerol and Saint-Émilion. This is a vitally important quality factor as it ensures that the grape bunches ripen evenly, while also laying the foundations for a normal-sized, or generous crop.
June and July continued hot and dry, to such an extent that there were concerns that some vines would suffer from drought. Fortunately, rains – but not too many – arrived in August, allowing sugars to climb and fruit ripening to proceed apace. There had been more than 12 days during July when temperatures rose above 30°C, and during August, these remained well above the averages for the period 1981-2010. Judicious passages through the vineyards during summer ensured that the right number of bunches were retained on the vines. Leaf canopies were carefully maintained, to ensure that bunches were protected from dehydration, or scorching. September’s good sunshine, allied with warm days, cool nights and modest rain allowed the grape skins to develop deep colours, ripe aromas and abundant, fully-ripened tannins, without astringency. Superb conditions allowed the harvesting of magnificently healthy fruit, as each plot ripened fully, starting in Pomerol on 11th September and finishing (for the Moueix family properties) on 1st October.
Highlights for 2015
The right bank regions of Pomerol and Saint-Émilion were undoubtedly favoured during 2015, receiving less rainfall than in some other areas of Bordeaux during August and September. We are thrilled to re-introduce to our list one of the best-located wines from Lalande-de-Pomerol, Ch de Bel-Air. This tastes like a grander wine than its origins might proclaim – do consider it. In Pomerol, Ch. Lafleur-Gazin has enchanting aromas, with perfect harmony and sweet length. It is a great vintage for Ch. La Serre, which crests the plateau adjoining Saint-Émilion’s moat and ancient walls, and epitomises all that is best in the district’s wines.
We believe that these right-bank wines are worth securing without delay. They are offered to us directly by the Moueix family and – just like wines from top Domaines in Burgundy – they are for passionate wine enthusiasts to squirrel away for future drinking. Their productions are limited and given the exceptional quality of the vintage, we consider these wines to represent striking value. Please make sure to specify magnums or larger formats now, if you have special future feasts, or gifts, in mind.
Anthony Hanson MW
The prices in this offer are in £ Sterling, per case 12x75cl (unless otherwise stated) in bond UK.