Attended a very nice Leoville Poyferre tasting in Copenhagen, where the vintages 2005, 2003, 2000, 1999, 1996 and 1989 were presented by Anne Cuvelier – head of public relations at Leoville Poyferre.
One of the topics of the evening was global warming and the effect on Bordeaux. Anne Cuvelier made some interesting comments about the effects of global warming at Chateau Leoville Poyferre … and in general for Bordeaux.
Global warming and Bordeaux
The most important effect mentioned was the earlier ripening of the grapes, and the ability to reach full ripeness in Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot each year.
This is very important as this will eventually increase the proprotion of these grapes in the the final blend, thus decreasing the use of Merlot. Merlot is early ripening and by some Chateau’s prefered because it ensured good ripeness even in quite poor years. With the global warming this is no longer needed, and Marie Cuvelier said Leoville Poyferre is thinking about replanting some of the Merlot plots, to increase the area with Cabernet and or Petit Verdot.
In my view Bordeaux need to make these changes to cope with the Global Warming as the ripeness and alcohol levels are increasing as we speak.
For the left bank Chateau’s it’s possible to reduce the proportion of Merlot in the final blend without a radical change in the caracter of the wine. On the right bank a shift from a very high proportion of Merlot could however lead to significant changes in the wines.
The quite dramatic increase in ripeness and alcohol level is therefore a big challenge for the right bank Chateau’s. In my view they really need to take this seriously before all wines taste like Troplong-Mondot. I’m sure the wine solicitor would be delighted by 15,5% alcohol in all Pomerols … but I’m not!
Leoville Poyferre – the tasting
First and foremost the tasting showed improvement over the years with Poyferre still maintaining the commitment to classic Bordeaux – only the 2003 vintage was hot and heavy. All wines was below 14% alcohol – even the 2003!? (but the 03 must be very very close to the limit).
I really enjoy the style of Leoville Poyferre, and the quality is consistent and improving. Leoville Poyferre is in my view one of the most dependable Chateau’s, and have year after year the last 15 to 20 years provided good value for the wine buyers. Perhaps not a candidate for wine of the vintage, but very fine classic Bordeaux with a good personality.
Tasting notes on the wines will follow.
Tasting Notes for this producer
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 1996 September 26, 2012
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 1989 September 23, 2012
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 1999 September 22, 2012
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2005 September 20, 2012
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2000 September 11, 2012
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2003 September 10, 2012
- Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2008 April 15, 2012