Always a favourite of mine and it most certainly didn’t disappoint. Cool minted fresh blackcurrant aromas. This wine is about elegance and harmony and represents quintessential Margaux. Full of subtle sweetness and quite simply exquisite!
Smooth and easy, Brane Cantenac's 2005 is following in the same vein as its recent predecessors,yet taking advantage of 2005's warmth, roundness and underlying minerality. Drink 2015 - 2040.
A sexy, style of wine from the Lurtons at Brane-Cantenac, this wine (a blend of 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc) has a stunning nose of forest floor, licorice, blackcurrants, plums and spring flowers. Soft tannin, full-bodied opulence and beautifully textured, lush richness, make for a brilliant wine from this large, 180-acre vineyard. In spite of the wine’s stunning forward fragrance and lushness, the color still looks as if it is 3-4 years old, rather than a decade. This is a big-time winner in 2005 and should drink well for at least another 25+ years. Drink: 2015-2040
This is the finest Brane-Cantenac I have tasted in over thirty years. Unusually perfumed and already approachable (atypical for most 2005 Medocs), it reveals a deep plum/purple color as well as a stunningly flamboyant bouquet of smoked herbs, licorice, camphor, black cherries, currants, and notions of plums and blackberries. Elegant with silky tannin and medium body, it is clearly a classic statement on the Margaux appellation. While not a powerhouse, it is beautifully concentrated, stunningly balanced, and surprisingly forward. It could be drunk now after several hours of decanting, but it should age easily for 20+ years. Drink: 2008 - 2028.
A magnificent effort, the 2005 is the greatest Brane-Cantenac I have tasted. Even more compelling than it was last year, it admirably demonstrates why this was such a highly regarded property in the middle of the 19th century. Boasting a dense purple color, stunning sweetness, and a glorious perfume of spring flowers, lead pencil shavings, black cherry jam, and blackberries, it is an elegantly styled wine with gorgeous concentration, superb harmony, beautifully integrated tannin and acidity, and an expansive, long finish. Yet, the overall impression is one of finesse, elegance, and serious flavor concentration. While it will undoubtedly last 30 years or more, it is hard to know whether it will close down or become more drinkable. I recommend giving it 3-4 years of bottle age and drinking it over the following two and a half decades. Drink 2010-2035
This dark plum/ruby-tinged Margaux displays a rich bouquet of dried herbs, truffles, meat juices, plums, anise, and black currants. Medium to full-bodied and complex, with a savory, broad, expansive mouthfeel, undeniable elegance, good freshness, and a long, moderately tannic finish, it requires 3-4 years of bottle age (or more if it closes down). It should evolve gracefully for 25+ years. Drink 2009-2031.
Bright berry and currant aromas with hints of minerals follow through to a full-bodied palate, with fine tannins and a medium finish. Balanced wine.
Château Brane-Cantenac is owned by a branch of the largest winemaking family in Bordeaux, the Lurtons. It was, however, originally created by the owner of Mouton Rothschild, Baron de Branne. After years of variable quality, it started improving in the late 1990s and began to create wines which captured Robert Parker's attention. He described Château Brane-Cantenac as "one of the stars of Margaux, if not Bordeaux" and their 2003 as "one of the best bargain-priced classified growths".
Plump, silky and seductive are the words often used to describe wines from Margaux. Because of their style, they tend to be user friendly and more approachable when young. This is in part due to its terroir which is comprised of the thinnest soil as well as the highest proportion of chunky gravel in all of the Médoc. It drains well but also is it more susceptible to vintage variation. Margaux wines tend to have the highest proportions of Merlot within the core of the Médoc further adding to their ample roundness and openness. Margaux is home to the largest number of classified growths including its namesake first growth, Château Margaux, as well as third growths, Palmer and d'Issan.