Presidial 2009 From Jean Luc Thunevin
by Cynthia Hurley
A Brilliant Ready-to-Drink Bordeaux
Taste Your First 2009 Bordeaux Tonight!
Some of the Greatest Wines I Have Tasted in 32 Years" -Robert Parker says of the 2009 vintage.
There is no question that 2009 is going to be one of the greatest Bordeaux vintages of our lifetimes. Parker, Tanzer, La Revue du Vin de France, Wine Spectator - they all agree.
"Everywhere I went in the two weeks I spent tasting the 2009 wines in Bordeaux,the song remained the same: simply put, virtually everyone agreed that '09 will go down in history as the greatest Bordeaux vintage of all time...The reasons for such high praise? A seemingly endless line-up of remarkably concentrated yet balanced wines, and the possibility that more properties than ever before have made what may end up being their best wine of all time." -Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar
Presidial Bordeaux 2009 Rated 87-90, Wine Spectator
"Blackberry, with some mineral and floral character. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a clean, fresh finish. Very good for a Bordeaux. Rated 87-90" - James Suckling Wine Spectator
The famous chateau 2009s will not be here for another 18 months in the Spring of 2012. Jean Luc has created Presidial to drink young. It is delicious and a wonderful early example of how expressive and delicious the 2009s are.
Presidial Bordeaux is all concentrated fruit and none of those vegetal, reedy flavors or rough tannins that often mar a lower-priced Bordeaux that is not meticulously made. This Presidial 2009 is quite perfect and no surprise considering that Jean-Luc Thunevin is the winemaker.
Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that Presidial is going to give Chateau Latour a run for its money. But, I am saying is that when these blockbuster vintages roll around that's when you and I should scramble after the little gems like Presidial because they will be exceptionally good - in fact, taste way beyond their pedigree.
You all know who Jean Luc Thunevin is, don't you? You could say that he started the whole "garage" movement back in 1989. Garage wines, as you probably know by now, are small production wines from tiny parcels of vines that are tended as preciously as orchid gardens. Jean Luc bought a tiny parcel, on the "wrong side of the tracks" in St Emilion and proved to the venerable St Emilion establishment in a few vintages that one could make a silk purse from a moose's ear if you did things like de-stemming by hand and severe green harvesting and keeping the yields very, very low.
He called his wine Valandraud. It led the way in the quality revolution in St Emilion that persists to this day. Now, even the old establishment left Bank types are copying his every move. He taught Bordeaux, by example, that just because you don't have the best terroir out there, with good vineyard work and meticulous vinification, you can conceive a wine way above its class. It has always been Jean Luc Thunevin's objective to get the most out of any terroir whether it be a fancy cru or a petite unclassified. He just wants to make great wine.
And so, when I tasted the opulent, fruity ripeness and soft tannic structure of the 2009 Presidial I knew Jean Luc had come through with another winner.
And best of all, I will feel no guilt uncorking these bottles because of the price, but neither will I feel I have made any compromise toward quality. Thank you, Jean Luc. Cynthia Hurley