Charmes de Kirwan, AOC Margaux, Medoc, Bordeaux, France, 2012
The second wine of Chateau Kirwan, a third level house of the unofficial and anachronistic 1855 classification, made from younger vines not included in the grand vin.
This wine: a blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc and petit verdot; natural cork closure, 13% abv, Ann et Vin, £24 (12/2016)
Consumer tasting note: a strong nose of mainly black berries and fruits, edged with cedar and spice, liquorice and a touch of cocoa; medium bodied with ripe firm tannins, with a palate of black berries and cherry with gorse flower (delicate coconut-like), spice, tobacco and liquorice. A medium-long length. Decant for an hour.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, deep intensity ruby, showing tears.
Nose: clean, pronounced intensity, developing, with aromas as they come, of initially meaty nuances which depart after a little time, then dark fruits and berries – black berry and spicy plum (mainly black with a little red) tinged with cedar and vanilla, lightly toasty, black liquorice, sweet oak edged with black cherry, cinnamon, a floral edge, touch of cocoa.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, ripe medium (+) tannins, medium alcohol and a medium body, medium (+) intensity, a sense of sweetness of black berried fruits in mid-palate, with flavours of black berry and black cherry, gorse flower (delicate coconut-like), vanilla and sweet oak, cedar, a little sweet tobacco, liquorice. A medium (+) length with a black berried cedary finish.
Quality: very good, balanced acidity and ripe tannins with alcohol, and suited to the flavour intensity and significant concentration, showing some complexity from time in wood and bottle, with deft use of oak, and tertiary notes of cocoa and tobacco beginning to develop. A decent length.
Drinking readiness/ageing potential: can drink now, but has potential for ageing in the short-term, say 2-4 years, during which period the tannins will round out a little more – there is a sound structural balance and better than average concentration and indicative length.