Boutique St Emilions top Parker scores2nd May, 2014 by Rupert Millar
Two “boutique” Saint Emilions, Palmer and Pape Clement topped Robert Parker’s in-bottle scores for the 2011 vintage and even if Ausone slipped from its 100-point potential, the Right Bank won out in general.
In his overview he described the 2011 as an, “inconsistent drinker’s vintage that offers immediate appeal” and added that the wines performed as well in bottle “if not slightly better” than they did in barrel.
Magrez Frombrauge and Clos de Sarpe were the two Saint-Emilions that caught Parker’s eye as he re-rated the 2011s and they, along with Margaux cru classe Palmer and Pessac Leognan estate Pape Clement, were the highest scoring wines of the vintage with 96 points each.
He called Magrez Frombrauge “gorgeous” and with a “skyscraper-like mid-palate” with no hard edges. It was originally rated 92-95 points. Clos de Sarpe meanwhile he called a “blockbuster 2011″ which “may be the most concentrated and intense wine of the vintage.”
It was rated 92-94 points originally but, as Parker noted, production is “microscopic”.
Palmer, “possesses superb concentration and purity”, while Pape Clement is “full-bodied, rich and multidimensional” and “transcends” the vintage.
Below these top wines, on 95+ points were Pavie, Bellevue Mondotte and Ausone which was originally the only wine with 100 point potential when the wines were first scored in 2012.
Wines among the 95 point mark were Le Pin, Petrus, Cheval Blanc, Clinet,L’Eglise Clinet, Valandraud, Troplong Mondot and Haut-Brion – the highest rated first growth.
La Mission Haut-Brion was the only other major Left Bank property of note to achieve 95 points or above most appearing at 94 points and below.
For the other first growths, Mouton was given 92+ and Margaux 93 points. Lafite was rated its worst score since the 1993 by Parker back in 2012 and it appears not to have been re-scored.
Likewise Latour, which pulled out of the en primeur cycle after the 2011 vintage, has not been re-scored.
In a vintage that was marked in its youth by strong tannins, Parker’s preference is clearly for the Merlot-dominated Right Bank. Following falling prices for the 2011s since the release of their prices in 2012 and the subsequent failure of that abysmal campaign, it will be interesting to see what activity, if any, now evolves around the top-scoring wines.
The wines and their scores can be found here (£).