A 90 point Parker wine from an estate that consistently punches above its weight. Chateau Talbot is one of the oldest of the classified growths in Médoc and all the other Saint Julien chateaux, from the great Second Growths down to the Cru Bourgeois properties, dance around the periphery of the estate. Owned by the Cordier family, a well respected wine making Bordealise dynasty, Talbot is so good that it ought to command yet even higher status. However as the Bordeaux Classification system has been set in stone since 1855 it can not be changed (unlike the mobile Saint Emilion system). The result is that wine lovers who buy purely on classification miss out on high flying chateau such as Talbot, leaving those with insider knowledge to snap up its glorious vintages.
Chateau Talbot takes its name from John Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, who was sent by King Henry VI to quell the rebellious French. Talbot was a seasoned commander having already served in the Welsh War (or the Rebellion of Owain Glyndŵr). He was a daring soldier – much like his opponent Joan of Arc. He was taken hostage at Rouen in 1449 and promised never to wear armour against the French King again, and he was true to his word. He died at the Battle of Castillon which ended the Hundred Years’ War. The 69 year old Talbot went to battle at Castillon unarmed and met his end in the final defeat at the fortress where Château d’Issan stands today. The victorious French generals raised a monument to Talbot on the field called Notre Dame de Talbot.
Talbot is delicious with lamb, rich red wine based casseroles, lightly spiced meats, truffle and mushroom based dishes, beef and darker game such as wild duck and pigeon, venison and wild boar.
Critics Score: Robert Parker – 90 points (out of 100)
The evolved, soft, silky 2008 Talbot is unquestionably a sleeper of the vintage, offering a dark plum/garnet color, loads of roasted herb, berry, black cherry, plum and Asian spice aromas intermixed with an attractive forest floor-like note. Already drinking well, this medium-bodied St.-Julien should continue to evolve for 10-15+ years.
Learn more about Chateau Talbot on Nicks Blog: Chateau Talbot and the English Earl