Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Well, the wait was brief and fairly stress-free, and then suddenly the scores were out and phones were ringing and printers whirring. The Wine Advocate…officially the most faxed document in the whole world (maybe) last Friday evening carried Robert Parker’s scores, and made very interesting reading. There were a lot of big winners, a few surprises and a few mysterious omissions. I won’t trawl through all the scores as you can see most on our website (missing only the very highly-scored, tiny production, jammy concoctions from the right bank like Clos de Sarpe, Plus de la Fleur Bouard, Confession etc. which we won’t be bothering with); but most illuminating were the wines which didn’t get a mention at all. Farr Vintners came out with the mittens off in a pretty fair and unsensational summing up of the big-haired-one’s report, although expect to see the Parker forum buzzing with anti-Limey sentiment in response. Farr resurrected the rumour – that RP had been banned from Gruaud Larose (Bib score 17+), Chasse Spleen (Bib score 16), Ferriere and Haut Bages Liberal after perceived sleights committed to these wines in his 2003 report. Certainly he didn't review them. If true...a tantalising situation indeed and a pretty bold move I say. To lock the door on the world’s most influential wine critic as his Chevy is rolling up the driveway is to say the least, rather brave. Or perhaps they were just on strike like the rest of the country! No, I jest; it is a testament to the confidence in the quality of their wine and respect for the knowledge of their customers and we certainly expect to sell plenty of boxes.

The Juice was also very happy to be there when the fax machine rolled just in time for us to fill Jancis in on the Pavie (RP 98-100, JR 14.5) and Pavie Decesse scores (RP 96-100, JR 14). You will have to watch her website for signs of shock and awe, but bear in mind this is how she described them: Pavie – “…this is a wine on steroids. Where is the gentle refreshment value? Could you lust after a second glass?” and Pavie Decesse - “…this really is like sucking a plank” (both Jancis, While the Bibendum team thought the Pavie was better than recent vintages there was not a lot of enthusiasm for some of the other wines from the stable and the word ‘Zinfandel’ was muttered more than once, and not in a particularly nice way.

Lafite (for many of us, the wine of the vintage) and Pichon Lalande did not find favour chez Bob as expected, but don't think that this will mean their prices will drop accordingly. We can live in hope…


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