2010: Stunning clear garnet with clear edges. Sweet earthy briar and graphite oakiness dominate the nose. The spice is strong with this one. Full and acidic on the tongue–quite New-Worldy–but obviously bringing up all the France Sud profiles. Rich thin acidic cherry fading off into harsh tannin with some of the latex and spice in the bouquet. One of my favorite negociants in France and while I avoid their “Cabernet” or “Merlot” or other varietal-designates which make it to USDM, I jump at any of the appellation-designates or named blends. This just smacks of South-France but with concentration most Umericans will love. 13-5 of course and Solid ♦ stuff.
1999: The most interesting part of having these wines side-by-side is seeing the similarities. This wine is gone, make no mistake about it. Drinking probably 5 years past it’s prime. Cloudy translucent garnet with harshly bricking (let’s just call that BROWN) edges. Raw olive nose punctuated with prunes and some old lady’s perfume: White Shoulders? Tresor? Something old and lilac-driven. Definitely maderized but the harsh funk of burnt rubber and wet concrete blows off a tiny bit but never goes away. New World wonks will think this wine positively STINKS. The funk is REAL. Fruit in the mouth is of the raisin-ey variety but with still-substantial acids and tannins show no sign of letting up. Nor the funk. This wine is a tad past ‘enjoyable’. I suppose with a huge glazed ham or something you could convince yourself it has substance, but on it’s own it falls short. 12-5 of course and ◊ at this point. So sad.
The most interesting part is from the colour to the nose to the taste you can totally see both wines evolving together. The only difference is the Boncaillou is Carignane-heavy whilst the Bertrand is not. The wines are synonymous in profile. Everything you find in the Bertrand is multiplied 10-fold in the Boncaillou. This is a fascinating juxtaposition of two bottles and as often as you can do this, the better. You can SEE the age.