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Pavillon Rouge du Chateau Margaux 2005



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An amazing 2005! The Merlot that was not allowed a place in the blend of the top wine brings incredible power and life to the Pavillon Rouge. It makes up 48% of the blend! The Cabernets (also 48%) contribute both density and restraint which could have been missing in the opulent, fleshy character of the Merlot. The Petit Verdot (4%) plays its discreet and necessary part of condiment to the full. The blend as a whole is surprisingly powerful, fat and balanced –that’s the magic of blending!

The colder than average winter delayed the bud-break by a week compared with the usual dates. Then, a hot, sunny spring brought about even vegetation growth and led to a quick flowering as from the first days of June on exactly the same dates as the previous year. Thanks to excellent weather conditions, the setting was perfect, but the crop potential turned out to be lower than in 2004, displaying significantly fewer bunches per vine.

The weather was fine and sunny throughout the whole of the summer, and above all, particularly dry: barely 100 millimetres of rainfall between May 1 and the beginning of the harvest! We had never seen such weather before. Luckily, the hot weather was not extreme. It doesn’t bear thinking what such a drought would have done to the 2003 vintage! But the great terroirs (and this is partly why they are great terroirs) have an amazing capacity to smooth out nature’s excesses. They seem to react with the same sense of moderation and balance which is the hallmark of the wines they produce. (Picking began on September 20th)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

All about red fruits, this is a celebration of ripe Merlot and Cabernet. It is touched with wood, but the flavors are of lively acidity, red berries, just showing some bitter chocolate. And to finish, more freshness. (RV)  (8/2009)

92 points Wine Spectator

Very beautiful aromas of crushed flowers–like roses–follow through to plum, berry and Indian spices. Full-bodied, refined and silky, with lovely ripe fruit and a delicate aftertaste of raisin and flowers. (JS) (3/2008)

Jancis Robinson

Tasted blind. Racy and exciting. Lots of vigour and supple fruit. Very classy – though a note of coconut came in. Still quite a bit of tannin on the end, but it should all resolve itself pretty well. 17.5/20 points. (2/2017)

Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

Stylish and pure, the 2005 Pavillon Rouge du Chateau Margaux is soft and round, with a deep ruby color, silky tannins, medium body and a lush, seductive mouthfeel. It is drinking well already and should continue to do so for another 8-10 years. (RP)  (6/2015)

K&L Notes

93-95 points Neal Martin’s Wine Journal: “More Merlot than usual (48 percent). Limpid purple garnet hue. Almost opaque. Just that gorgeous Margaux nose: violets, blackcurrant, just brilliant definition (and this is the second wine?) Blueberry coming through, a little more cassis. Firm tannins, again wonderful definition and focus. More dense than previous year, very good weight with a strong, blackberry, cedary finish. Lots of freshness on the finish. Wow, a sensational Second Wine. Tasted April 2006.”

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