From: Bordeaux, France
Blend: 72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Petit Verdot
Critical Acclaim: WE 94 Wine Enthusiast
This is a luxurious wine that’s opulently rich. Ripe black fruits dominate, lending fullness to the firm structure in the backdrop. It’s a wine with great potential, density and weight. Touches of chocolate and licorice combine with flavors of dark plum, toast and spice.
JS 93 James Suckling
A dense, chewy wine for the vintage, with plum, currant and blackberry character. Full body, polished tannic texture and a bright finish. Very pretty indeed.
WS 92 Wine Spectator
This has solid guts, with plum, currant and blackberry fruit melded together at the core, while notes of charcoal, warm tobacco and singed iron form the backdrop. Should be very solid when it comes together after some cellaring.
RP 90 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The medium-bodied 2011 Lynch Bages possesses a saturated ruby/purple color as well as beautiful creme de cassis notes, a generous, concentrated, well-made, medium to full-bodied style and supple tannins. A successful effort in 2011, it should be drinkable in 3-4 years and last for 15+. It is a sleeper of the vintage.
D 90 Decanter
Fine density of blackcurrant Cabernet fruit, very good natural richness and very ripe tannins.
WW90Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
Chateau Lynch Bages is so consistently good, the 2011 is already showing nicely; medium bodied, soft tannins on the palate; pleasing tension and freshness show up for in the finish. A good one to drink while waiting for the 2009's and 2010's to settle down and drop out their tannins.
Taste: The 2011 Château Lynch Bages Pauillac Grand Cru Classé presents a harmonious amalgamation of dark fruits and well-integrated oak. On the nose, it offers generous notes of blackberries and cassis, intertwined with nuances of tobacco, cedar, and a hint of leather. The palate is structured and dense, showcasing a symphony of plum, currant, and blackberry. A background of charcoal and warm tobacco adds depth. With its plump tannins and balancing freshness, this wine culminates in a lingering, elegantly earthy finish.
Pairing: The richness and structure of the 2011 Château Lynch Bages Pauillac Grand Cru Classé calls for hearty and bold food pairings such as serving this opulent wine alongside with beef, lamb (see below for the recipe!), or game such as deer or venison. Poultry also makes a great companion.
Lamb Ragout With Spring Vegetables
By David Tanis
About. In the heart of the left bank of Bordeaux, amongst the famed wine-growing region of Pauillac, lies the esteemed Château Lynch Bages. Here, on the estate, weaves a tale dating back to the 16th century when the 2011 Château Lynch Bages Pauillac Grand Cru Classé came to life.
A Legacy Etched in Vineyards
The history of the Lynch Bages estate starts on the lands of "Batges," first mentioned in writing in the 16th century. In the 17th century, the royal notary Jean Déjean and his wine merchant brother Pey began to group the surrounding plots. The second generation, headed by Pierre Déjean, another royal notary, along with his son Bernard, a Bordeaux merchant, finalized the creation of the Domaine de Bages.
The estate was transformed in the 18th and 19th centuries under the Lynch family. Irishman John Lynch had fled Galway for Bordeaux in 1691. His son, Thomas, married into the ownership of the Domaine de Bages. The grandson, Michel Lynch, recognized the potential of the land, selected the best grape varieties, pioneered soil drainage methods, and developed new viticulture tools. After seventy-five years of stewardship, the Lynch family significantly increased the estate's prominence.
Pauillac: A Terroir of Distinction
The Pauillac appellation, where the Château Lynch Bages estate is situated, is bestowed with a unique set of climatic and geological conditions. Pauillac benefits from a distinctive microclimate near the Atlantic Ocean and the Gironde estuary, with the Landes forest as a natural barrier.
Its winters are cool, protecting against frost, springs are often wet, summers are warm, and autumns are sunny. These conditions, exceptionally favorable for viticulture, allow the diverse grape varieties of the Lynch-Bages vineyard to mature optimally.
Covering a hundred hectares, the vineyard's soil is homogeneous, mainly composed of deep Garonne gravel. These soils, derived from the gradual erosion of the Pyrenees by the Garonne River, ensure proper drainage and store heat during the day, gradually releasing it at night. This leads to moderate vine growth and deep rooting, crucial factors that contribute to the unique identity of the wines produced here.
A Taste Journey: The 2011 Vintage
The 2011 Château Lynch Bages Pauillac Grand Cru Classé was aged in wooden barrels for 15 months with a blend of 72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Petit Verdot.
The year was unusual, with a notably warm and dry spring leading to an early flowering under excellent conditions. A cool and rainy July followed a mixed August, with cooler-than-average temperatures punctuated by heat spikes and storms. September, however, was warm and dry, allowing the grapes to ripen fully.
Harvesting began on September 12th and ended on September 28th. This was almost a fortnight earlier than the previous vintage. The 2011 vintage stood out from its predecessors, showcasing well-ripened fruit, plump tannins, and a refreshing balance indicative of a classic Bordeaux style.
Wine Spectator noted the vintage's solid structure, melding plum, currant, and blackberry fruit, supported by notes of charcoal, warm tobacco, and singed iron. Vivino.com found oaky tobacco and cedar notes combined with the dark fruits of cassis and blackberries, earthy leather touches, and light smoke.
The 2011 Château Lynch Bages Pauillac Grand Cru Classé is a testament to the legacy of an estate rooted in history and the exceptional terroir of Pauillac. Its complex flavor profile and well-structured body make it a wine that pays homage to its heritage and promises a delightful journey for the senses. Whether enjoyed now or allowed to mature further in the cellar, it represents a prestigious piece of the rich tapestry of Bordeaux's wine heritage.
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