2009 Ch Le Dome
One of the most distinctive wines made in Bordeaux, Le Dome has one of the highest percentages of Cabernet Franc of any claret I can think of. Composed of 80% Cabernet Franc and 20% Merlot, it exhibits a certain delicacy and elegance (due to the Cabernet Franc component) in addition to resounding power, concentration, depth and multidimensional personality. Black/purple to the rim, it offers strikingly intense notes of spring flowers, raspberries, mulberries and wood smoke, medium to full body, sweet tannin and a cunning intensity and texture that suggest finesse and delicacy. However, the wine’s richness, length and lingering depth build incrementally in this exceptional St.-Emilion. It will be drinkable in 4-5 years and should age for two decades or more. This is Jonathan Malthus’ finest wine to date.
by Robert Parker, Issue #199, February 2012
--The Wine Advocate
Comes at you very directly, with a wide beam of linzer torte and blackberry fruit, liberally laced with sweet spice and anise notes. This is plenty dense, though, with a strong roasted wood note on the finish, where a licorice snap edge lingers. From the frankly modern camp. Best from 2013 through 2024. 1,000 cases made. –JM
Web Only - 2012
(an 80/20 blend of cabernet franc and merlot) Deep, inky ruby-purple. Complex, very deep aromas of fresh blackcurrant, vanilla, licorice and sweet spices. Dense, sweet and tactile, with rich, vibrant black fruit flavors nicely complicated by sweet spices and a touch of sexy new oak. Finishes very long, smooth and full-bodied, with chewy mouthcoating but ripe tannins and a persistent note of floral black cherry. This is the richest and fullest of the '09 offerings from Jonathan Maltus, and much better than the 2008 version. While the merlot was picked on October 12, and the cabernet franc on October 14, neither one, amazingly, smells or tastes of overripeness. But this serious wine will need at least four or five years of cellaring upon its release. A great example of an intelligent garage wine made with people's palates-not just headlines-in mind. 93-96 points
By Ian D'Agata
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, May/Jun 10
--Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
A gorgeously perfumed wine, dominated by the ripest Cabernet Franc, combining richness and an intense structure. With its tannins, it will age well over many years. The fruit is finely textured, deliciously juicy, showing the most complex series of flavors. R.V. (2/1/2012) — 95
Loads of blueberries, with hints of wet earth and fresh mushrooms. Full-bodied, with layers of ripe tannins and juicy fruit. Goes on for minutes. Best wine from this estate ever. Try after 2018.
February 14th, 2012
--James Suckling - www.JamesSuckling.com
This single-vineyard of three hectares is situated next to Château Angelus and represents the highest manifestation of Cabernet Franc in a wine of this level from Bordeaux. Seventy five per cent of the vineyard is dedicated to this variety – the rest is old-vine Merlot.
The vines were planted in the 1950’s on sandy soil over an extended ironstone layer (crasse de fer). The yield is reduced by up to three runs of green harvesting. Concentration and definition are therefore the watchwords for this benchmark wine.
The grapes are harvested at the precise moment of ripeness, handpicked into shallow trays, and after double-triage are transported by conveyors into pristine wooden vats. Vinification involves both rotational pumping and pigeage. Secondary fermentation in French oak barrels is followed by a traditional approach to ageing.
The production of LE DOME is not large at around 1,000 cases. What little exists, however is made with no expense spared in the pursuit of excellence.
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