2014 Château la Tulipe de la Garde Merlot, Bordeaux Superieur
Score : 89/100
This Bordeaux Superieur wine is made by Château la Tulipe de la Garde, a winery situated between Saint-Emilion and the Dordogne River in France, and owned by Dutch rock star Ilja Gort.
This a typical Bordeaux blend with 86% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 4% Cabernet Franc, aged in new French oak barrels for 12 months. It was vinified at the Chateau under the consultancy of famous winemaker Michel Rolland.
The wine comes in a rather dark red color. Not black, you can see the bright red color through the rim, but the core is pretty dark.
The nose also feels dark and ripe. Dark cherry, vanilla, roasted hazelnut, black pepper, and prunes, it recalls ripe and concentrated Bordeaux wines with controlled power and concentration. Quite complex too.
A touch of capsicum adds a hint of vegetal character, also adding typicity to the wine.
On the palate, it is dry and savory, in a typical French and Bordeaux fashion.
But the richness of an oily texture and solid body, together with ripe-fruit flavors bring enough sweetness sensation to balance it well.
Smooth granulous tannins, and plenty of powerful spicy notes of clove and nutmeg. It’s quite oaky and full of ripe primary fruit flavors like described for the nose: dark cherry leading the charge, with blackberry, and strawberry jam.
Medium-length finish for the style, but enjoyably velvety.
A well-made Bordeaux wine in a modern style filled with Merlot goodness of ripe fruit flavors, and the richness of well-selected oak characters.
Dry and savory, yet with a smooth velvety texture, it will pair wonderfully with rich tasty meat dishes, grilled meats or rich stews.
This 2014 vintage is good to drink now as the oak has rounded up the drying tannins enough already to make the wine approachable and leave the primary fruit available to your senses. Yet a year in bottle should soften it up and open it up even further. From there it should age well up to 10 years, but I’d rather enjoy its primary fruit characters within the next 5.
So go for it between 2018 and 2022!
Find out more about the producer and all their wine reviews with our Château la Tulipe de la Garde winery profile: