2009 Clos Marsalette, Pessac-Léognan
Very perfumy, with white pepper and sanguine notes, followed by singed mesquite and silky-textured damson plum and cassis fruit flavors and a long, iron-tinged finish. A minerally style, but with the flesh for balance. Distinctive. Best from 2013 through 2026.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Another impressive offering from proprietor Stephan von Neipperg, this blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot displays classic notes of wet gravel as well as jammy, smoky, sweet red and black currants, raspberries and forest floor. A classic Pessac-Leognan with the lush, opulent style of 2009 well-displayed, this is a seductive, full-bodied, fleshy wine to drink over the next 10-12 years.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright red-ruby. Sexy, smoky aromas of black raspberry, charcoal and game show an exotic jammy ripeness that reminded me of syrah from the Languedoc. Then lush and mouthfilling, with compelling sweetness to its black raspberry, smoke and game flavors. For all its near-confectionery sweetness and early appeal, harmonious acidity gives this outsized wine lovely inner-palate energy. I'd enjoy this beauty over the next ten years.
Purchased by Count Stephan von Neipperg and Didier Miqueu in 1992, Clos Marsalette was brought back to its full potential in 2002 with the completion of a new winemaking facility. Its six hectares of vines are planted on three gravelly hills along the Garonne River. From Jancis Robinson: "Very dark crimson. Freshness of Pessac and the richness of 09. So sweet and thick and exciting. Real tension and fireworks. Long and tarry. Pushing to the limit without exaggeration. Quite gamey on the nose and pretty extreme in terms of ripeness. Obviously there has been a battle to keep it appetising, but I think the battle has been won." (04/2010)