Vieux Ch. Certan 1996
Tasting Notes Vieux Ch. Certan 1996
Tasted from bottle at Mark Walford's annual lunch at Waterside Inn. Alexandre Thienpont produced a commendable VCC in a difficult vintage. It has an open-knit, inviting bouquet with dark plum, cherry and roasted chestnuts emerging with time. There is still just a tincture of brettanomyces here, although less evident compared to other bottles. The palate is medium-bodied with a fresh, clean line of acidity. The fruit profile is black rather than red with notes of Chinese tea and a touch of mint on the finish. Very fine, although I cannot see it improving from here. Tasted May 2013.
Tasted three times from bottle in January, the 1996 merited a slightly higher score on one occasion, but my policy is to go with the more conservative rating. The wine exhibits a dark plum color, and a complex nose of roasted herbs, Asian spices, earth, and sweet black cherry fruit. A refined claret, with excellent concentration, a sweet mid-palate, and moderate tannin in the finish, it is a finesse-styled Pomerol. Anticipated maturity: 2003-2016.