2009 Les Carmes Haut-Brion, Pessac-Léognan

SKU #1084670 93 points James Suckling

 Round and friendly, with soft and velvety tannins and delicious plum, spice and meaty aromas and flavors. Juicy finish. Subtle and rich.  (2/2012)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Beautiful, Burgundian-like aromas of burning embers, roasted Provencal herbs, black currants and sweet cherries and raspberries emerge from this medium-bodied, elegant 2009 Pessac-Leognan. Medium to full-bodied and seductive with sweet tannins as well as a surprisingly evolved, precocious personality (even for a 2009), it will offer delicious drinking over the next 15+ years. This is another wine in which I noticed subtle bottle variation. (RP)  (2/2012)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Still youthfully tight, this shows a packed core of plum, cassis and blackberry fruit wrapped with bittersweet cocoa, tobacco and charcoal notes. Nice drive marks the finish, with gorgeous polish, as a mouthwatering linzer torte note expands as it opens in the glass. (JM)  (3/2012)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Medium ruby-red. Perfumed aromas of black raspberry, licorice, wild herbs and minerals. Sweet, lush and densely packed, with concentrated black cherry and black raspberry flavors offering considerable early appeal. Finishes with rising fruit and big, ripe tannins. This is superb already but should evolve positively for 10 to 12 years. (ST)  (7/2012)

K&L Notes

92 points Neal Martin's Wine Journal: "Served blind at the Southwold 2009 tasting. The Les Carmes Haut-Brion ‘09 has a very showy ostentatious bouquet with ripe black fruit, creme de cassis and blueberry that explodes from the glass. The palate is full-bodied with rounded succulent black fruit, low acidity, plush and generous with a long sweet, rather oaky finish. It bears similarities to Smith Haut Lafitte in style although compared to the bottle last November there is just a touch more weight on the finish. Tasted January 2013."


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Price: $79.99
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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.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

Specific Appellation:

Pessac-Leognan/Graves

- Graves is the large red and white wine region located to the southeast of the city of Bordeaux along the Garonne River. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates the red wines from the area, while the whites are mixtures of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. The most important area within the Graves is the village of Pessac-Leognan. Most of the great chateaux, including Haut Brion, a premier cru and the only wine outside of the Medoc to be included in the 1855 Classification, are located in this small appellation. Graves derives its name from the rocky, stony terrain of the region. Many people believe that the stony soil radiates the day's heat at night and thus makes the grapes ripen earlier than the other regions in Bordeaux.