The cork was a bit of a bugger to get out, splitting in three places, damn thing even confounded my Butlers thief. Its one thing that I really hate about opening old bottles, and I cant wait for all these wines we are bottling under screwcap now, to mature over the years, and twenty years from now to be able to open them with ease!! So once that battle was over a small sample was poured into a glass to examine. A very clear wine, starting to look a bit dull, with a pale brick red core and a browning rim which usually indicates a good degree of maturity. On the nose the wine was a bit stinky at first, with a kind of farmyard like aroma, but that soon disappeared and the wine opened out with aromas of spiced fruit cake with quite a fruity edge to it. I was pleasantly surprised by the build up of fruity flavours on the nose, and each time I went back to sniff something else was starting to show. On the palate it was clean and quite pronounced in flavour, with the Dundee cakey flavours followed by more berry fruit flavours wrapped in the very well balanced characters of new French oak. Time has mellowed the acidity right down, and the tannins have softened up as they pass across the gums like silk, supporting the fruit flavours but never dominating them.
I think I would describe this as quite a feminine St Julien compared to more brutish Gruaud-Larose and Lagrange. I have to say that I was really impressed with this wine, more so than the 1989 which I also tasted tonight, but as it came in at 12.8% it wasnt eligable. Its on our list as Bin 230 at a not inconsiderable sum of £120 a bottle, but I really believe it is worth every pound of it.
I cant wait to read some of the other posts and see what wonderful wines the blogosphere has come up with.