Neal Martin's review of the 2016 Bordeaux En Primeur came out on Friday afternoon and generally his scores and views were extremely positive. In a simple statement he sums it up: "You will love these wines."
Perhaps the most interesting element was the (98-100)pt score for the already-released Cos d’Estournel, which as you may recall, was priced in line with the 2015 vintage. If this looked a smart move before the review came out it looks even better now. As you might imagine, what little stock we had remaining after the initial release interest sold out immediately after the score was unveiled – but we are hard on the hunt for more stock.
Since Neal became the primary - in fact, sole - Bordeaux reviewer for The Wine Advocate, his notes and scores have taken on an extra significance. Despite having long been considered one of the hardest working, most meticulous tasters in the business, he lived rather in the shadow of Robert Parker who held the post of chief Bordeaux reviewer - well, since Parker's retirement, Neal is the main man. His scores, notes and views are well worth your attention.
Whilst Neal's detailed report can only be found on The Wine Advocate's website and in the print copy, a summary of his view on the vintage is as follows: "Let’s cut to the chase: 2016 is unequivocally a great vintage in Bordeaux. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise... we are looking at a vintage that can send tingles down the spine and back up again. Over twenty years of tasting Bordeaux from barrel at en primeur, this was my most pleasurable tasting experience alongside the 2009, albeit in a very different style."
Wines which achieve notoriety in Neal's report include Beychevelle "a wine that promotes it alongside the likes of Léoville Las-Cases or Ducru Beaucaillou" ; Brane-Cantenac, "a 2016 imbued with astonishing finesse and intensity without compromising the essence of the château style." ; Lynch-Bages, who "produced an audacious Pauillac that is a modern-day equivalent of the 1990." ; Figeac "whose 2016 is a step up from the stunning 2015 (if that seemed possible)" and Clinet, which has "astonishing complexity". These are just the tip of the iceberg with over 30 wines scored 96-98 or better.
You can read the scores and notes for the wines we are offering on our website but here is the big list we've all been waiting for:
Neal's 98-100 point wines
Visit our En Primeur pages