2009 Les Allées de Cantemerle, Haut-Médoc

SKU #1131650 90 points James Suckling

 Blueberry and fresh mushrooms, with hints of earth. Medium-to-full body, with medium chewy tannins and a medium finish. A little austere. Second wine of Cantermerle, which made a super 2009. Best in 2015.  (2/ 2012)

K&L Notes

This second wine of Château Cantemerle is primarily comprised of younger vine parcels from the esteemed estate. The wine has a similar profile to the Grand Vin, but is ready to drink within several years of harvest. That's now! A quick decant reveals generous fruit and and good terroir that is always welcome for under $20. It is comprised of 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, and 10% Cabernet Franc. Even as a second wine, grapes were individually hand-sorted before fermentation and the wine spent 12 months in 20% new French oak before bottling. Second wines also shine in 2009!

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Price: $19.99

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By: Jacques Moreira |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 8/12/2014  | Send Email
Dark crimson with hints of violet color. Wow... Tobacco, mushroom, cocoa, along with dark cherries and berries and sure enough...earth! On the palate, all of that, with black olives and cocoa more pronounced. The tannins and acidity are very much present without any sign of harshness. On the contrary, this wine is refined and elegant, surely showing the pedigree of a very classy 2nd wine from a classified cru.

By: Jeff Garneau |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 11/7/2013  | Send Email
Easily the best $20 Bordeaux in the store. Why? Well, the 2009 vintage was the best since 2005 for wines at the $10 to $20 price point. And Chateau Cantemerle is one of only five Haut Medoc properties that are designated "cru classe", in fact it is a fifth growth. Finally, the quality of the 2009 vintage was such that even second wines like the "Les Allees" really excel. Loads of dark fruit here, blackberry and cassis. Superb Cabernet character. I was shocked by how well this is drinking already. If you really want to get your money's worth, though, tuck this away in the cellar for a few years. You won't regret it.

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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

- View our bestselling Bordeaux.