A Bordeaux Vintage Filling Out Beautifully
Although for a long time in the shadow of the almost uniformly excellent 1996s, the Bordeaux 1995 is full of gems. We’ve been lucky to have sampled several in recent months, from both sides of the Gironde, and the top wines are filling out beautifully with a fleshy richness that was perhaps missing in their youth. As they mature, they are becoming more and more interesting and well worth buying.
Why Were They Overlooked for So Long and What’s Changed for the Better?
From barrel and early on in bottle, these 1995s just didn’t have the kind of showy perfection that saw the 1996s steal the show. The Cabernet Sauvignon struggled to ripen fully, giving a slight greenness and tightness, whilst a higher proportion of Merlot than usual was used and meant that when young, these reds suffered from a lack of cohesion that has taken two decades to shrug off. At twenty years, they are really starting to express themselves and have become a very interesting proposition.
Which are the critics’ picks in 1995?
The best wines of the Medoc and the Pomerol did well. Looking at the Wine Advocate, Parker rates Haut Brion, Petrus, Latour, Pichon Lalande, Eglise Clinet and Clinet at the top with 96 points, with Grand Puy Lacoste very interesting at just a point behind. Neal Martin leans just to the right with his scoring, with Lafleur and Petrus in the top two spots followed by Angelus, Margaux and Lascases on 96 points. Brane-Cantenac and Calon Segur also perform well and will be good value.
Prices Remains Very Reasonable for this Twenty Year Old Vintage
Despite the quality, value is good as supply remains unusually deep for a Bordeaux with this level of maturity. Neal Martin’s score of 95 points for the 1995 Calon Segur – a wine “with an enthralling sense of harmony” – looks great value. At the top end, the first growth of Mouton-Rothschild, for example, outscores its 1996 counterpart by a point in the Wine Advocate, yet is currently trading at a lower price.
Fine + Rare’s View – There are Excellent Wines with Masses of Quality and Character
There are highs and lows and consistency across the board is not as high as, say, 1996, yet in 1995 it is nonetheless easy to find excellent, interesting wines with bags of character. These are Pauillacs that taste like Pauillac, Margauxs that taste like Margaux and Pomerols that are classic Pomerol. If you wish, there’s plenty to explore, analyse and discuss and if not, they are delicious simply to drink.
For our full 1995 Red Bordeaux Listings please click here, or for our expert guidance please contact us.