Chateau Talbot has long played an important role in my vinous career - I was raised on the trio of wonderful vintages 1981, 1982 and 1983 many moons ago in Bristol. On the 9th June this year for my 40th birthday my friends and I even drank through a case of the 2005 Talbot as a nod to my historical fondness of the Chateau. This birthday was made even more special when I was gifted a bottle from my birth year, 1978, and last Saturday I seized my moment to pull the cork on this beautiful bottle.
To drink wine from your birth year is a wonderful moment regardless of the quality (sometimes) and so to be given a bottle from a Chateau so very close to my heart was a hugely thoughtful gift and a very exciting drinking prospect. In fact I almost held the bottle on such a pedestal that the moment to open it may have eluded me for many years. But last week for my wedding Anniversary, my wonderful mother sent me 4 stuffed Partridges… Needless to say, the moment had arrived. The mere sight of the wonderful Cordier bottle and the name Talbot encourages a smile on many a drinker’s face and I am no exception. The label was in perfect condition and the cork came out intact… I sniffed and smelled… Hosanna in the Highest. This was a perfect bottle.
I’m sure many would scoff at such an ‘off’ vintage and such maturity but I leave you with a quote from Neal Martin who enjoyed a bottle just a few months ago:
‘It is a very classic old Saint-Julien but fair dues – this Talbot seems to be holding up well still giving pleasure.’
I could not agree more – typically, rusty iron/blood aromas and gorgeous balance, a touch of that lovely sweetness that can develop from decades in the bottle. This has aged ever so gracefully. If you are lucky enough to have a few well stored bottles of this, I suggest you tuck in and enjoy.
It is worth noting too that our team lunched at the Chateau earlier this year and we were all pleased to see this venerable Chateau back on track and producing stuning wines once again – do not overlook Chateau Talbot!