Saturday, May 19, 2012

Updated Review: *** $ Chateau Perron Madiran, 2004, Madiran, France - Review and Rating (BEST VALUE)

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Original Review, July, 2009: Chateau Perron Madiran comprises 60% tannat grape, a grape known for its gritty, tannic, rugged nature. The Perron is blended with 20% cabernet sauvignon and 20% cabernet franc. All of the grapes hail from the southwestern region of France known as Appellation Madiran. The wine is not designed for long aging, so the 2004 vintage - now over four years old - is pretty much ripe for current drinking.

In the glass, Chateau Perron Madiran is appropriately deep - a velvety dark red. The aromas are bold and lush, coming across as ripe cabernet fruit, layered with fresh-washed laundry hung out to dry in the breeze, and a whisper of oak.

On the palate, there is a strong front and back end. The front is prickly sweet berry acids that flush the tip of your tongue and the roof of your mouth. Then the tannins take over, pulling your cheeks together like the shrinking room about to crush Superman. They squeeze the remaining sugars from the wine to bring a bit of sugar to the finish.

Very interesting and intense wine. Three stars. Very interested to see what happens with more decant and/or bottle time. Great value.

Updated review, a year later, July, 2010:  Color is consistent.  The aromas have folded in, now almost mute.  The palate is much brighter and fruitier.  Acidic red berries on the open, surrounded by taut tannins.  Consistent scoring.

Following long decant, full day in partially filled bottle:  Held up fine.  All consistent except the palate is rounder and the tannins have fleshed out a bit.

Updated review, two more years, now eight years from vintage date, May, 2012:   Still deep velvety dark red in the glass.  Soft and almost classic cabernet and merlot style nose.  Now, at long last, the front and back ends of the wine have come together splendidly.  Sweet red fruit opens up on the palate, drawing effortlessly into a sandy wave across your tongue, with brighter red berries crawling up into your cheeks for a long, lingering, balanced red sweet berry and acid finish.  This has hit its stride and jumps a full notch to four stars at eight years of age - a rip-roaring best value at its bargain price point.  Very bad call on my part three years ago - before tasting - that it was not designed for aging. Following long decant, three days kept cool in partially filled bottle: softly knitted berry nose.  The palate remains strong with some of the red berries more subdued.  Remarkable lasting power in a bargain wine.

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