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4 March 2016 News

Decanter writer Andrew Jefford makes a case for reassessment of the maligned 2011 vintage (“Kicking the hell out of Bordeaux 2011”), and selects his top wines, which include La Fleur Petrus 2011. Below is an excerpt.

“Which is better in 11, the Trotanoy or the Fleur-Pétrus? It’s a hard call, and Trotanoy certainly has more belly flesh to it, but I love the yin-yang contrast between the stealth, grace and finesse of La Fleur-Pétrus’s delicate fruit style and its firm, corrective but un-brutal tannins. There is admirable glowing gravelly ripeness here, too, without the clumsiness which clay soils could bring in 2011. 93

I spent two happy days in September 2015 tasting most of the top red Bordeaux 2011s (though not, alas, the First Growths, Petrus, Cheval Blanc and Ausone). To position this vintage as worse than the skinny-latte 2002s, the charmless 2004s and the sometimes weak-kneed 2007s, and to hang adjectives like “miserable” around its neck, seems to me a miscarriage of justice. Personally, I like 2011 more than the sometimes tight-lipped and over-serious 2008s, and at least as much as the enjoyable, laid-back, gutsy 2006s (a vintage with which it has much in common), and I think it compares favourably with 2002, 2004 and 2007.”

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