Some will use the sensations that I am talking about in this report to the point of forgetting what matters most: taste and gratification. Others will successfully remain within the frame, and the limits, the year set. One only had to be present on site at the crucial time of harvest in September to take the measure of the limits in the quality of the crop.
But in 2011, price will matter more than taste. Last Friday, during the presentation of Château Montrose 2011 to the trade in Bordeaux, Max de Lestapis, President of wine-traders asked Martin Bouygues to go back to the 2008 release price. In the audience, other traders were talking about a 30 to 40% drop in release prices. The entire trade does not seem to need convincing of the necessity of a drop, except for some estate owners who wish to maintain the 2009 and 2010 stratospheric prices and merchants who fear for the value of their stock.
As for me, after having consistently tasted superb 2002s, 2004s and 2008s, and considering what I have already learned about the 2011s, I believe there could well be real bargains in store for us this year. Selection will of course be essential.
I have tasted over 500 wines of 2011. Red wines are very heterogeneous, navigating the more dilute than nobly dense. With prices falling, I feel good business. Dry white wines are superb and some of the sweet wines too. All of my notes will be distributed to my readers subscribers Tuesday, April 3 in the evening. (bordeaux wine critic - jm.quarin)