Bordeaux Satellites, 2005

2005 has the potential to be one of the great red Bordeaux vintages – consistently characterised by very rich wines, with great structure, huge concentration and lively acidity across all appellations. It could also prove to be one of the longest-lived vintages ever.

It’s all thanks to the weather. A dry growing season with spells of light rain on the lead up to the harvest provided perfect ripening conditions and set the tongues wagging. Total rainfall for the year was around 50% less than average, which caused vine roots to grow deeper in search of moisture. This produced grapes with the highest levels of dry extract, concentration and tannin on record – perfectly petite berries with thick, tannin-rich skins, and the potential for rich, yet fresh wines with good acidity.

First growth châteaux and other top labels’ prices reached new stratospheric levels, yet because it was a great year across the board, there are also many great value Bordeaux to be found from less well-known châteaux in the satellite districts, whose prices are unaffected by the en primeur market – giving everyone the chance to taste this great vintage. 2005 was also a very good year for white Bordeaux – quite big in style, with great concentration. It was an excellent year in Sauternes. 

The wines

2005, like 2000, is a great opportunity to taste this great vintage without the hefty price premium of the right and left bank’s elite producers. With very similar weather to the great appellations, 2005 was an excellent year in the satellites, where young, intelligent, exciting winemakers took full advantage of the near perfect conditions resulting in a gorgeous glut of early accessible wines.

Bordeaux Satellites, 2005

2005 has the potential to be one of the great red Bordeaux vintages – consistently characterised by very rich wines, with great structure, huge concentration and lively acidity across all appellations. It could also prove to be one of the longest-lived vintages ever.

It’s all thanks to the weather. A dry growing season with spells of light rain on the lead up to the harvest provided perfect ripening conditions and set the tongues wagging. Total rainfall for the year was around 50% less than average, which caused vine roots to grow deeper in search of moisture. This produced grapes with the highest levels of dry extract, concentration and tannin on record – perfectly petite berries with thick, tannin-rich skins, and the potential for rich, yet fresh wines with good acidity.

First growth châteaux and other top labels’ prices reached new stratospheric levels, yet because it was a great year across the board, there are also many great value Bordeaux to be found from less well-known châteaux in the satellite districts, whose prices are unaffected by the en primeur market – giving everyone the chance to taste this great vintage. 2005 was also a very good year for white Bordeaux – quite big in style, with great concentration. It was an excellent year in Sauternes. 

The wines

2005, like 2000, is a great opportunity to taste this great vintage without the hefty price premium of the right and left bank’s elite producers. With very similar weather to the great appellations, 2005 was an excellent year in the satellites, where young, intelligent, exciting winemakers took full advantage of the near perfect conditions resulting in a gorgeous glut of early accessible wines.

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