Good deep medium ruby. Slightly high-toned, kaleidoscopic nose combines crushed blueberry, black raspberry, graphite, violet and sexy oak notes of mocha and espresso. Superripe and wonderfully sweet but with harmonious acidity leavening the wine's almost viscous ripeness. Plush, silky and utterly seamless wine with an impressively broad, slowly building finish featuring suave tannins, lingering notes of minerals and smoke and outstanding palate-saturating persistence. A great vintage for Jean-Luc Thunevin's flagship wine. Drink now or over the next 20 years.
Dark purple. Very rich and perfumed. Heady. Taken to the limit of concentration. Very polished and sweet. Then lots of dry minerals on the finish. Drying finish. Some freshness. Pavie Lite? Rich, dried currants. Fine for concentration fetishists.
Anticipated maturity: 2017-2027
Robert Parker 96
Tasted blind at the Valandraud vertical at the property, the 2010 Valandraud is a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc matured for 22 months in new oak (a little less than subsequent vintages). Initially it felt a little volatile on the nose at first and took time to calm down. This is very heady and raucous, lacking the refinement of the brilliant and superior 2010 Lafleur poured alongside. The palate is very concentrated with blackcurrant pastille and blueberry, veins of cassis emerging towards the finish. Almost viscous in texture, it has immense volume and persistence. It just needs a lot more time to temper its fieriness but that will surely come in time. This is a Valandraud for those with patience. Tasted December 2016.
Anticipated maturity: 2020-2045