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April 14, 2015

Gazin and Doisy-Vedrines 2014 – En Primeur

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Gazin 2014, 6×75 - £195 or 12×75 – £385 EP
94 pts TA, 18/20 RG

Chateau Gazin has released their 2014 wine this morning at £32 a bottle, a decrease of 7.6% (ex-london) when compared to £35 for their 2013. This in turn was lower than the £37 per bottle in 2011 and 2012; it is worth bearing in mind the 2012 sold out in one day. Gazin 2014 has not yet been scored by the Wine Advocate, but Tim Atkin MW has awarded it 94 points and Rene Gabriel 18/20. Gazin 2014 is a very good wine indeed and offers immense value compared to other leading Pomerols. Moreover and most importantly, Gazin 2014 offers an incentive to buy on release, the only vintage to trade under £400 a case of 12 bottles.

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The quality of the 2014 vintage is very good, comfortably the best since 2010. However, while quality is high in 2014, prices need to be low. In our en primeur report (to read this click here) we posited that for the first time since 2008, we could see prices that incentivise one to purchase on release. The general consensus in Bordeaux during en primeur was that given the 8% weakening of Euro to Pound, estates may increase their 2013 release prices by 5%, while still offering value and a compelling purchase. Moreover, any estates who matched their 2013 price would be very popular and sell out.

Gazin’s 26.5 hectares border Petrus and L’Evangile, in fact Gazin sold 5.5 hectares to Petrus in 1969. Gazin is cited at the north-east section of the Pomerol Plateau and shares one of the highest levels of elevation with Petrus. As such the terroir embodies the best of Pomerol, gravel with clay, iron and sand, it even boasts patches of Blue clay, made famous by Petrus. Gazin is also one of the most venerable estates in Bordeaux, once the Hospital of Pomeyrols, built by the Chevaliers to receive pilgrims on the Santiago de Compostela. As such the logo draws on it close connection with the Knights Templar.

Doisy Vedrines 2014, 6×75 – £110 or 12×75 – £220 EP
94-97 pts JM, 95-96 JS

The 2014 sweet white wine vintage is nothing short of superb and we are delighted to release one of our strongest recommendations, Doisy-Vedrines at £220 per case of 12 bottles or £110 per case of six. We tasted Doisy-Vedrines in Joanne’s atmospheric warehouse along with a selection of Grand Cru Sauternes and Barsacs during en primeur week and it immediately stood out. James Molesworth of the Wine Spectator awarded it 94-97 points, while James Suckling awarded it 95-96.

In 2014 Sauternes are utterly superb, the Indian summer creating grapes that are ripe and balanced with fresh acidity. All this provided almost perfect conditions for botrytic development, Sauternes and Barsac experienced an August in October, with afternoon sun ensuring noble rot, fundamental for botrytis. These late conditions were similar to the great 2001 vintage in Sauternes. However, while the 2001s were very ripe, the 2014s possess a superb balance of acidity and fruit ripeness, combined with incredible botrytic characteristics. Doisy Vedrines offers opulence that is unsurpassed by any of its peers in 2014, with tropical fruit characteristics and beguiling notes of ginger; it was nothing short of superb.

The estate was rated as a Second Growth in the 1855 classification and was purchased by the Castéja family in 1946. The current owner is Olivier Castéja, brother of the Managing Director of Bordeaux’s largest negociant, Joanne. The family’s history is intertwined with that of Bordeaux’s having owned Duhart Milion from 1710 to 1929 and Joanne since its foundation by their direct descendant, Paul Joanne in 1865. The vineyards are planted with 85% Semillion and 15% Sauvignon Blanc with an average age of 30 years. Aging takes place in 60% new French oak barrels for 18 months and yields are kept incredibly low even by the standards of other Sauternes properties.

Also released and available:

  • Doisy Daene, 12×75 – £260
  • Extravagant de Doisy Daene – £104/half bottle
  • Prieure Lichine, 12×75 – £220
  • Suduiraut, 12×75 – £390

To visit our buy page please click here.