It’s hard not to admire the brilliant Jean Gautreau, who has run this great terroir and estate (just to the north of St-Estèphe’s Château Montrose) with meticulous perfection for decades. The 2005 is a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc. Offering beautifully sweet crème de cassis and blueberries, this is concentrated essence of blue and black fruits, with some underlying minerality, a medium to full-bodied mouthfeel, and stunning texture, length and purity. This is superb Sociando Mallet, with surprisingly sweet tannin, which is even more remarkable in this vintage of high and occasionally hard tannins. Give it another 4-5 years of cellaring, and drink it over the following 30 years.
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