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Feb 08

Chateau Palmer: Blending notes, 2011 vintage

Tag: Allgemeinessigi.hiss @ 21:26

Between December and February reigns over the technical team of Château Palmer a studious atmosphere conducive to making an exceptional vintage. The tasting sessions to prepare the final blend take place during this period.  Magical moments, with measured gestures and refined palates, which allow us to imagine the final structure of Château Palmer and Alter Ego 2011.

 A play in several acts

 In order to maintain a certain distance and allow the different batches to continue ageing, the blend tastings take place in several steps.

The first act is to blind-taste all of the batches. Very useful, this tasting session allows our tasters to identify the characteristics of the different parcels and their expressions in a specific vintage without knowing their origin. A way of leveling the playing field that can lead to some nice surprises.

Neither too early nor too late, our tasting committee came together again the following week. Faced with 33 samples, our refined palates began to take note of the characteristics of each batch. First the Merlots, then the Cabernets Sauvignons, finishing with the Petits Verdots.

Since the beginning of the year our quintet, to be discovered below, has been working on the most meticulous of tastings. To attribute each batch, in function of its style, its correlation to Château Palmer or Alter Ego. A delicate decision, the gourmand samples offering an intense fruit will harmonize nicely with the touch of smoothness and roundness found in Alter Ego. What is more difficult is to be able to decipher the potential for ageing that will enter into the partition for Château Palmer.

Listening closely, Olivier Campadieu, our Cellar Master, carefully blends what will be the foundation for each wine. Not to give away any secrets, but our team seems to have been seduced by some beautiful Merlots.

In two weeks time our tasting professionals will come together one or many more times in order to harmonize and give birth to the opus that will best represent Château Palmer’s interpretation of the 2011 vintage.

A plurality of actors

During these blend tastings, Chateau Palmer brings together a company of experts combining knowledge of the vineyard and experience in fine wines. In order to be perpetually challenged, these actors play a key role in the final debate of assembling the two wines.

Sabrina Pernet, our Technical Director, and Thomas Duroux work together. Both are well placed to understand the character of each plot. During the season they roam the vineyards and make decisions concerning winemaking and aging. Choices that will have a direct impact on the outcome of these tastings.

Together they will decide on the nature of the final blend taking into account the views provided by three specialists.

Our team brings in Bertrand Bouteiller, who ran the property for almost forty-two years. A valuable contribution that allows us to preserve the Palmer style over many vintages.  Jacques and Eric Boissenot intervene as winemaking consultants. Our two authorities in fine wines of the left bank provide an expert description of each sample.

 Once the two compositions are finalized, the blending will be carefully preserved until the 2011 Primeurs, taking place in early April. The appointment is made.

 We invite you to discover the picture album to illustrate these magic moments.  In two weeks time our tasting professionals will come together one or many more times in order to harmonize and give birth to the opus that will best represent Château Palmer’s interpretation of the 2011 vintage.

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