At the end of January the Mr.Wheeler team were treated to an extensive blind tasting of Red Bordeaux with an upper budget of £15 a bottle from our current portfolio. The aim? To understand the true value of our wines in the glass, to spot strengths, weaknesses and to understand the true depth of our offering. Unbeknownst to us, our Buyer, Ben Godfrey, introduced a “ringer” to the tasting. We’re extremely pleased he did!
As we poured, tasted, took notes and moved on, it was clear when we reached this glass that something was quite different and rather exciting. Instantly it was clear that the wine freshly poured was more mature than those tasted previously. There was a brick-like red hue in the glass which immediately suggested some development and evolution. On the nose the wine was lifted, full and carried spice box, vanilla and toasty notes of evolved cassis and cream. There were also tertiary notes of leather and smoking embers… It was joyous…. On the palate the wine, though completely mature, offered such open generosity and vibrancy that it left the entire team speechless. Such elegance and roundness allied to obvious age left us scratching our heads. What on earth could it be?
The answer? One of the world Famous wine critic Robert Parkers favourite Cru Borgeois estates; Château d'Escurac. The vintage was 2007 and Ben explained that he had received privileged access to a small parcel of this 12 year old Claret direct from Bordeaux. When we asked how on earth it had come to rest amongst wines with a top price of £15 a bottle he said “Because we secured an unbelievable price...” And we are passing this on to you. With only 50 cases available for our entire customer base, our advise is to take a case or two of this genuine star wine to enjoy over the next 12-18 months.
About the Château
With an 11th century chapel on its property, Château d'Escurac has been a notable producer in Civrac en Medoc since its wines were first mentioned as "amongst the Medoc fifth growths" as long ago as 1839. Passing through a variety of owners until it reached the Landureau family in 1934, the property is currently owned and attended to by Jean-Marc, the grandson of the original Landureau. In 1989, Jean-Marc went to live on the 23ha property and put all of his energy into renovating the vineyard. With plots that are home to clay, gravel soils that are grassed by natural growth or seeding, Landureau practices lutte raisonnee techniques that yield 40-50hl per hectare. In 1990, he made his first vintage, while simultaneously working to improve the vines that he had inherited. Obsessed with embracing new techniques to further his progress, Landureau was rewarded in 1996 when Château d'Escurac was awarded the 15th Crus Bourgeois Cup, ahead of some of the most illustrious growths in the category.
Martin Wheatley - Mr.Wheeler's Fine Wine Desk