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la demoiselle sociando malletI’ve done my share of Bordeaux bashing for their over-the-top pricing and uneven quality, but this second wine from Chateau Sociando Mallet hits my sweet spot at a reasonable price.

Black current, fig, and all the pencil shavings you can want, with unusual white pepper notes providing lift to the nose.

On the palate it is medium bodied, good acidity,  with soft black fruit upfront enhanced by lots of mid-palate minerality and cedar that really asserts itself on the finish, which is freshened by a little herbal bitterness and driven by  fine grained tannins with plenty of length.

A blend of 50% Cabernet and 50% Merlot, this is an elegant wine for the price and unlike their primary wine which is tight and austere when young, it is ready to drink now, very approachable.

Negotiant jean Gautreau purchased this property, which is just north of St. Estephe, in1969, and has turned it into a reliable producer. It is not classified but most think it should a 3rd or 4th growth.

 

Score: 88

Price: $20 at Trader Joe

Alc: 13.5%

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