2010 Vieux-Château-Certan, Pomerol (Pre-Arrival)
A perfect wine with perfect purity of fruit. It shows gorgeous aromas of blackberries, currants and cedar with hints of chocolate. Full body, with a lovely sweetness of fruit and ripe tannins. It goes to chocolate, hazelnut and spices. Nutmeg too. Sexy and incredible. It has so much depth of fruit and density. Better in 2020.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
What an amazing duo of wines from proprietor Alexandre Thienpont, who thinks his second wine, the La Gravette de Certan, is better in 2010 than many of the vintages of Vieux Chateau Certan produced in the 1970s - and I agree. It is a complex, relatively evolved style of wine that represents one-third of the production in 2010. An equal-part blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, it has a deep purple color and a wonderfully sweet nose of raspberries, black cherries, mulberries, licorice and foresty notes. Full-bodied and evolved, this wine has gorgeous texture and remarkable opulence. It can be drunk now or cellared for 10-15 years.
*Collectibles* A stunner, this marries structured tobacco, ganache and loam notes to a glorious core of raspberry, blackberry and plum coulis flavors, accented by coffee, roasted mesquite and black tea aromatics. A terrific minerality courses throughout, with the finish letting power and refinement play out almost endlessly. Best from 2017 through 2040.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(86% merlot, 8% cabernet franc and 6% cabernet sauvignon;... 75% new oak; 14.5 % alcohol) Deep purple-ruby. Knockout nose displays amazingly penetrating aromas of black cherry, cassis, violet, pungent herbs and minerals; for me, this is the nose of the vintage! Then rich, fresh and mouthfilling, with lively acidity framing and lifting the wine's dark fruit, floral and mineral flavors. The very long, palate-saturating finish features building tannins that turn just slightly astringent at the back. Had the tannins been just a bit finer, this might have been the wine of the vintage. Alexandre Thienpont feels that this wine is similar to the 1950, while the 2009 is more like the 1948, and he notes there was 20% less production in 2010 than in 2009.
*Cellar Selection* A beautiful, velvety smooth wine, unusually for Vieux Château Certan dominated by Merlot. It has tannin, to be sure, but these are conveyed through the ripe fruit and the sweetness of the blackberry flavors. It is opulent, although never too much, retaining its elegance. Age for many years.
Rich purple crimson. Camomile (though I am not sure I would have spotted this if Alexandre hadn't mentioned it) plus fine dark fruit and graphite freshness. Closed on the nose but scented on the palate. Very fine tannins. Crunchy. Fresh and long. Great purity and line and length. Absolutely lovely. 18/20 points.