Souvenirs from Bordeaux

By Dirk Smits

August, 2020

A few weeks ago I was invited to a private dinner. The host provided me with the list of wines that would be served and to my great pleasure I saw Château Pichon-Longueville Baron 1989 was to be opened. Feeling inspired I brought out my old work uniform and… see video below.

The wines we tasted that evening:

Champagne Camille Savès, Bouzy Grand Cru Rosé
Due to the addition of 12% Pinot Noir wine from Bouzy, very structured rosé with restrained elegance.

Champagne Charles Heidsieck Champagne Charlie Brut 1985
Showing beautiful maturity, very complex and long, a great wine!

Watch Sophie Gayot sabering the bottle of Champagne Charles Heidsieck Champagne Charlie Brut 1985.

Château Lafleur-Cardinale, Saint-Émilion Grand Cru Classé 2009
Still young, full bodied with the typical Saint-Émilion elegance, well balanced with a lingering taste, one of the wines of the evening.

Château Branaire-Ducru, Saint-Julien 2005
Very elegant, fruity, ready to drink.

Château Pichon-Longueville Baron, Pauillac 1989
Thirty years old and still holding up, at this age there is more bottle variation but we were lucky, the wine still had enough fruit and structure to be very enjoyable, one of the wines of the evening.

Château Mouton Baronne Philippe, Pauillac 1982
For those who are not familiar with this Château, its name changed in 1989 to Château d’Armailhac. Thirty eight years is pushing it for this wine (at least this bottle), most of the fruit is gone and wet leaves and cigar box aromas are present.

Château Rabaud-Promis, Sauternes 1988
Beautiful complexity with enough acidity left to make it very enjoyable – perfect!

Mackenzie’s Port 1963
This house does not exist anymore, they made their last vintage wine in 1982 and we happened to open a bottle that had gone bad.

Banyuls Grand Cru 1949, bottled for Domaines et Terroirs du Sud
Grand Cru can be used for Banyuls aged more than 30 months, a very complex, balanced and lingering wine with some reserve left – the winner of the evening.

And if you wonder what happened to the half bottle of Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey, Sauternes 2001… I used most of it to make aspic that was served with the foie gras terrine.