Cellar Management

Pick My Next Bottle – 1998 Bordeaux

The September Installment of Pick My Next Bottle focuses on Bordeaux from the 1998 vintage.  As I mentioned in the first installment, the purpose of this series is to provide insight into specific wines or producers you may currently have in your cellar. The winning bottle will be opened this Sunday and a Bottle Note will be published shortly thereafter.

1998 was an exceptional vintage for the Right Bank appellations of Pomerol and Saint Emilion. The best wines from the Right Bank are still aging beautifully. Rain during harvest impacted the Left Bank appellations and the vast majority of the wines are ready to drink.

The Contenders:

  • 1998 Cos d’Estournel – The 1998 vintage was not an outstanding one for most Cabernet-reds from Bordeaux, particularly from the Medoc. It rained in late September and affected the quality of the grapes. In any case, the 1998 Cos was a delicious bottle showing a spicy and slightly herbal character on both the nose and palate with hints of currants and dried fruits. It was full and soft with velvety tannins. (06/16) 90 points from James Suckling.
  • 1998 Pavie Macquin – Pale to medium garnet-brick in color, the 1998 Pavie Macquin simply sings with incredibly pure, spritely notes of blueberry preserves, blackberry pie and black cherry compote, revealing loads of eucalyptus, mocha, dried lavender and Chinese five spice accents. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is has wonderfully seductive blue and black fruit layers, framed by velvety tannins and the perfect amount of freshness to create tantalizing tension, finishing with incredible length and depth. Effortlessly delicious and yet possessing plenty of subtext for intellectual stimulation, I just love where this compelling ’98 is at right now! (05/18) 97 points from the Wine Advocate.
  • 1998 Canon-La-Gaffelière – This saturated purple-colored 1998 offers sumptuous aromas of prunes, blueberries, overripe black cherries, chocolate, coffee, and spicy new oak. Full-bodied, opulent, and expressive, this flamboyant/ostentatious effort is crammed with glycerin and extract. The tannin is sweet in this accessible, multilayered 1998. 93 points from the Wine Advocate.

Which 1998 Bordeaux Should I Open?

  • 1998 Cos d'Estournel (53%, 9 Votes)
  • 1998 Pavie Macquin (29%, 5 Votes)
  • 1998 Canon-La-Gaffelière (18%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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Thanks for voting! I’d love to see a comment below on why you picked one bottle over another. Also, let me know if you have any suggestions for the October installment of Pick My Next Bottle.

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