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Thursday, January 24, 2008

BORDEAUX 2005 in Toronto, Canada, Jan 22/08

The Time and Date: Tuesday January 22, 2008 2PM to 4 PM

The Event: Vintages Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux 2005 Tasting Event,
for the trade. Over 100 wines from over 75 chateaux.

The Venue: Four Seasons Hotel, Regency Ballroom

The Target Audience: wine media, sommeliers, food and beverage managers.

The Availability/Catalogue: many of the vaunted, ripe and
classically-structured 2005 wines were available for pre-order. This was not
strictly a futures event, and stock will begin to arrive over the next few
seasons. But many could still be pre-ordered by Feb 8/08. My tasting
catalogue, as with all previous LCBO tasting catalogues, was well-laid out,
clear, had prices, and connected well with the labels on or at the tables.
And as with all previous LCBO catalogues, this one fell apart after 30
minutes. Their printer has a problem with staples.

The Quote: "What vintage is this wine?" - gushed-heard from one young blonde
lady. Did she not know where she was? Or was she a gate crasher?

The Wines: I could not taste every single red wine, but I tried. I did not
taste any white Pessac or any Sauternes/Barsac, for there was no time and
palate left. The best wine values of the show were Chateau Beaumont ($19.85)
from Haut Medoc and Chateau Greysac from Medoc (not available for purchase,
but regularly selling for under $20 US). Both were well-aged already, ripe,
and with a textbook mouthfeel and length, and exceptional at the price:
these are wines to have while waiting for the other 2005s to come around.
Here were my faves of the show (not in any order except by stars), although
just about all of them are closed:

**** Four Stars (90 - 93 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

- Château Chasse-Spleen ($65)

- Château Phelan-Segur ($70)

- Château Talbot ($72)

- Château La Conseillante ($309)

- Château Leoville Barton ($309)

- Château Troplong Mondot ($329)

- Château Angelus ($392; $784 for magnum)

- Château Lynch-Bages ($215)

- Château Figeac ($174)

- Château Pichon-Baron ($197)

- Château La Couspaude ($99)

- Château La Lagune ($109)

- Château Canon ($133)

- Château Leoville-Poyferre ($199)

- Château Beau-Sejour Becot ($114; $228 for a magnum)

- Château Langoa Baron ($113)

- Château Clarke ($32)

- Château La Gaffelière ($110)

- Château Poujeaux ($47)

- Château Dufort-Vivens ($54)

- Château La Dominique ($73)

- Château Lagrange ($96)

*** Three Stars (86 - 89 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

- Château Dassault ($54)

- Château Camensac ($36)

- Château Grand Puy Ducasse ($46)

- Château Bouscaut ($42)

- Domaine de Chevalier ($82)

- Château Latour-Martillac ($49)

- Château Smith Haut-Lafitte ($125)

- Château Canon-La-Gaffelière ($138)

- Château La Dominique ($73)

- Château Beauregard ($55)

- Château Branaire-Ducru ($160)

- Château Léoville-Barton ($309)

- Château Haut-Bages Libéral ($85)

- Château Lynch-Bages ($215)

- Château Pichon-Longueville ($198, $396 magnum)

The Food: hard to beat duck terrine, chicken liver mousse, roquefort cheese,
stilton, brie, dried fruit, several kinds of breads, and the like.

The Downside: it may have been just a trade function, with tastings rather
than orders, but does that excuse a certain rudeness from many of the French
pourers? They talked amongst themselves while we were standing in front of
them, waiting for wine to be poured, glasses outstretched so that there
would be no mistake about what we wanted. Other pourers were writing notes
and text messaging. And it wasn't just to me either...On the other hand, the
LCBO Product Consultants were lively and alert, as if to compensate.

The Upside: a great opportunity to taste some serious wines at serious

The Contact Person: try Shari Mogk-Edwards through

The Effectiveness (numerical grade): 95.

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