2009 Ch Fourcas-Hosten

The vintage of 2009 is regarded as an exceptional one in Bordeaux: perhaps even better than the near-perfect 2005. July and August were hot, generally producing big, ripe and full-bodied wines.

This is not evident in the 2009 Château Fourcas-Hosten from Listrac on the Médoc, which in my mind is a welcome characteristic. At 13 % ABV, it is not over the top, but balanced and moderate. I opened a bottle this Friday evening and aired in a decanter for an hour before pouring a glass. However, the wine was extremely closed and did not do itself justice. This is not all that surprising, since young Bordeauxs often have that particular characteristic. My wife agreed that it just wasn’t up to par at the moment, so I plugged the cork in the bottle and put in the fridge for another 24 hours. Then, I again poured it in a decanted for another 1-1.5 hours. Now it had opened up more, but it would certainly benefit from another five years in the cellar.

Closed and tight but with rather pleasant tannins. Elegantly vegetal on the nose with nice berry fruit, in particular black currants, and herbs. Medium-bodied, pleasant and not at all representative of the vintage (as I have understood judgements in the press). However, the finish is disappointing with a green and bitter sensation, almost grapefruitish. Leaving me with this green aftertaste, I am hesitant to give it a positive forecast, since the bitter finish is not likely to wear off with bottle maturing. It is unfortunate that it does not have a more generous end. This finish is somewhat surprising given the allegedly ripe and big vintage. 83p.


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