St. Estephe

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This commune, in the Medoc area of Bordeaux, has a reputation for value for money, containing “many minor growths of rustic charm” (Stevenson). This Chateau Haut-Vignoble Seguin 1999  (£12.99 from Majestic Wines) fitted that description admirably. I tried it 24 hours following the initial un-corking (I had used a vacuum pump on it to preserve any freshness) but it stood up very well.

The blend contains about 70% Cabernet Sauvignon. The colour was deep red but with a slight brown rim, clear and with some viscosity. The nose wasn’t particularly fruit-driven but rustic and rich rather than elegant. The palate was dry with some refreshing acidity, of medium length with pronounced flavours. The tannins had developed to a gentle smoothness and this was kept refreshing with some acidity that was in balance.

It was exactly as Stevenson described – but none the worse for that.

[Richard: very nice wine on day 1, easy to drink (12.5%) but with some power. A bargain.]

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