2009 La Tour Carnet, Haut-Médoc
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
This dense purple wine displays notes of charcoal, subtle toast and white chocolate as well as blueberry and blackberry liqueur intermixed with hints of graphite and licorice. Dense, full-bodied, unctuously textured, and quite long and thick, this concentrated, impressively endowed wine is silky-textured and already accessible. However, I suspect its best days are at least 5-7 years ahead of it. It should keep for a minimum of two decades. One of the few classified growths in the southern end of the Medoc south of Margaux, La Tour Carnet has been owned for a number of years by Bernard Magrez. It is one of the most picturesque chateaux in Bordeaux, dating from the 12th century, with real towers and a Camelot-style moat surrounding it. A large estate, they have been making top-flight wines for well over a decade, yet the prices remain very realistic for a classified growth Bordeaux. The 2009, which boasts Michel Rolland as the consultant, was a final blend of 62% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, and the rest tiny dollops of Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc.
Firmly dry wine, solid with many firm, wood-derived tannins. It gives bitter coffee and cranberry juice flavors, but also manages to retain freshness.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(a blend of 62% merlot, 33% cabernet sauvignon, 3% petit verdot and 2% cabernet franc): Saturated, bright red-ruby. Lively aromas of cassis, blackberry, licorice and mint. Moderately sweet and vinous, with ripe, well-integrated acidity and graphite minerality giving lift to the very rich flavors of dark berries, chocolate and sexy oak. This dense, concentrated wine really calls for five years of cellaring and is built for a graceful evolution in bottle. Looks to be the top vintage yet for this Bernard Magrez wine.
A linear wine with very good fruit and plum characters. Full body with firm tannins and a mineral and fruit finish.
Very dark. Very subtle and complex on the nose. Round and easy and pretty relaxed. Seems rather effortless. Lots of pleasure and nice ripeness rather than simple sweetness. Good!
Plump and ripe, with a warm edge to the steeped plum, cherry and currant fruit which mingles gently with lightly toasted vanilla and tobacco on the finish. Supple, approachable style. Drink now through 2017.
½* Woody on nose, with raspberry and sandalwood flavors. Fine middle.