Médoc and Graves, 2008

2008 was a good to very good Bordeaux vintage on the left bank. Despite a tricky start to the growing season, a warm autumn produced richer, more concentrated wines than was expected. A classic year.

As a result, the later-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon fared better than Merlot, and the high Cabernet Sauvignon blends of Pauillac and Saint-Julien set the standard: densely ripe, vibrant, powerful and fragrant, with a fleshy firmness and powerful tannins.

A wet spring with a late frost caused uneven flowering and poor berry set, with some hail in July adding to producers' woes. A warm, sunny latter part of July provided some relief (and green harvesting), but August saw damp, cool conditions once again. Mercifully, the vintage was saved by a warm autumn and the sun shone from mid-September to mid-October when warm Atlantic breezes helped ripening and kept the grapes healthy.

It was a very good year for dry whites – a low yield of typically fresh, floral and citrussy whites with crisp acidity. 2008 was a tough year in Sauternes where the hard frost, hail and mildew-inducing rain reduced quality and yields drastically.

Médoc and Graves, 2008

2008 was a good to very good Bordeaux vintage on the left bank. Despite a tricky start to the growing season, a warm autumn produced richer, more concentrated wines than was expected. A classic year.

As a result, the later-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon fared better than Merlot, and the high Cabernet Sauvignon blends of Pauillac and Saint-Julien set the standard: densely ripe, vibrant, powerful and fragrant, with a fleshy firmness and powerful tannins.

A wet spring with a late frost caused uneven flowering and poor berry set, with some hail in July adding to producers' woes. A warm, sunny latter part of July provided some relief (and green harvesting), but August saw damp, cool conditions once again. Mercifully, the vintage was saved by a warm autumn and the sun shone from mid-September to mid-October when warm Atlantic breezes helped ripening and kept the grapes healthy.

It was a very good year for dry whites – a low yield of typically fresh, floral and citrussy whites with crisp acidity. 2008 was a tough year in Sauternes where the hard frost, hail and mildew-inducing rain reduced quality and yields drastically.

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  1. Château Léoville Barton, 2008

    Château Léoville Barton, 2008

    Saint-Julien, Bordeaux, France

    Optimum Drinking: 2020-2050
    Reviewer Rating: 93 - Stephen Tanzer

    "...silky texture, firm structure and the aromatic lift and nuance of the vintage’s best examples.” Stephen Tanzer

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  2. Château Margaux, 2008

    Château Margaux, 2008

    Margaux, Bordeaux, France

    Optimum Drinking: 2016-2041
    Reviewer Rating: 94 - eRobertParker.com

    "This is a stunning Chateau Margaux...Remarkably, a mere 36% of the entire production was selected for the 2008 Chateau Margaux." eRobertParker.com

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