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Palmer 2009

Subregion France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > Margaux
Grape VarietyCabernet Sauvignon/Merlot

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Tasting Notes

One of the all-time great Palmers (along with the 1961, 1966, 1970, 1989, 2000 and 2005), the 2009 Palmer is a blend of 52% Merlot, 41% Cabernet Sauvignon and a whopping 7% Petit Verdot that came in at close to 14% natural alcohol. An opaque blue/black color suggests a wine with thrilling levels of concentration and intensity, and that is exactly what a taster gets. Subtle smoke, incense and Asian spice (soy?) notes interwoven with graphite, blueberry, blackberry and cassis characteristics lead to a full-bodied, phenomenally concentrated, viscous, opulent wine with plenty of sweet tannin. This sensational Palmer reveals even more floral notes than vintages such as 2005 and 2000. It should drink well for 50 years.

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, March 2012

The 2009 Palmer has a beautifully defined bouquet with bright black cherry and boysenberry fruit, crushed stone and rose petal. Not as decadent as the bottle poured at the BI tasting, yet precise. The palate is medium-bodied with supple and refined tannin, and crisp acidity. Wonderfully poised with quite a penetrating finish that delivers a payload of multi-layered blueberry and blackberry. This is a very well crafted 2009 Margaux destined for long-term ageing. Tasted blind at Farr Vintners’ 2009 Bordeaux tasting. 2022 - 2050

Neal Martin, vinous.com, March 2019

This has such class and power. Aromas of blueberries and blackberries, with hints of violets. Full-bodied, with polished tannins and a juicy finish. Solid and extremely pretty. Fabulous finish. Try in 2020.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, February 2012

Deep garnet colored, the 2009 Palmer delivers a beguiling array of black fruit—warm plums, cassis and black cherry compote—with kirsch and wild sage sparks plus profound suggestions of fragrant earth, black truffles, iron ore and liquid licorice. Full-bodied, rich and decadently seductive in the mouth, the generous fruit is superbly framed with plush tannins and seamless freshness, finishing long and mineral laced. 2020-2055

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (March 2019), March 2019

Soy, liqourice, tar, white pepper and baked earth, this remains young and taut, with a punch of cassis, bilberry and fleshy black damson fruits. You reach out and touch the tannins, they are so velvety and rippled. Not as effortlessly balanced as the 2005, this has more of an exuberant character, with chocolate and turmeric spice rippling through the fruits, and a mouthwatering crushed mint leaf finish. You can approach this now with a good few hours in a carafe, but it will improve further with another few years in bottle. Harvest September 23 to October 14, 60% new oak. One hectare of the vineyard was tested in biodynamic farming in this vintage.

Jane Anson, JaneAnson.com, December 2021

Particularly deep crimson. Heady, rich nose. Much more obvious ripeness than on most 2010 left-bank reds. Sweet ink and glorious satin texture. Pure hedonism. Not the classicism of Ch Margaux but pretty smart and pleasurable. And it’s not too sweet. There is Margaux character here and lots of interest. Liquid glamour. But no shortage of alcohol. 14.5%
Drink 2018 – 2042

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, March 2020

Traditionally the finest wine of the Médoc after the 1st growths, Palmer slipped a bit in the 1980's but has returned to top form recently, rejoining the super-second mini-league alongside Lascases, Cos d'Estournel, Ducru, Pichon Lalande, etc. This year it must be the only Medoc wine to be made from a higher percentage of Merlot than Cabernet; the breakdown is 52% Merlot, 41% Cabernet, 7% Petit Verdot. Medium-deep colour, a seductive nose with moccha and milk chocolate notes, smooth and sumptuous on the palate. Super-sweet red fruits, wrapped up in silk. Very classy and stylish. Maybe more purity and harmony than the 2005, certainly very polished. Hedonistic and voluptuous. Big tannins apparently but they are totally enveloped by the fruit. Gorgeous and very Margaux. A beautiful wine.

Farr Vintners, April 2010

The nose is profound packed out with concentrated black fruits. Blackcurrant, blackberry and black cherry all vie for dominance on the palate, the layers of different fruits ensuring complexity. Although the tannins are ripe they give structure, the fleshy power is refreshed by bilberry giving the wine sleekness and elegance. Drink 2022-2050.

Derek Smedley MW, April 2010

A wine that is every bit as good as the brilliant 2005. This is a wonderfully balanced Palmer, despite some of the highest ever levels of tannin in the young wine, according to Thomas Duroux. Aromatic, plum and blackcurrant fruit, with silky yet plentiful Cabernet tannins, well balanced oak and a silky finish. Deceptively forward, this is a wine for the long haul. 15+ years.

Tim Atkin MW, April 2010

Black red, deep velvety richness and wonderful concentration of black, spicy fruits on the nose, firm and powerful, fragrant and lifted, a satiny, seductive texture, great concentration, totally harmonious. Drink 2016-35.

Steven Spurrier, Decanter.com, April 2010
Read more tasting notes...

The black/purple-colored 2009 Palmer exhibits a level of tannin that exceeds anything they have previously produced. The final blend is 52% Merlot, 41% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 7% Petit Verdot, and the finished alcohol is 13.9%. It is hard to say this 2009 will turn out better than Palmer's extraordinary 2005, but it certainly will be different in style given the alcohol level and power of this vintage. Pure blackberry and black currant fruit notes intermixed with hints of incense, graphite, and wood are followed by an opulent, thick, juicy wine with plenty of structure, and enormous concentration, mass, and length. Four to five years of patience is required, but this beauty should last for three decades or more. (Tasted once.) Drink 2010-2040.

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (188), April 2010

Sample taken on 19th March. A blend of 41% Cabernet Sauvignon, 52% Merlot and 7% Petit Verdot, cropped between 23rd September and 14th October, and 13.9% and 3.75pH. IPT is 88, which has never been seen before. A deep purple hue, the nose very tight at the moment with black cherry, cassis, a touch of oyster shell and liquorice. Blossoming in the glass. The palate is medium to full-bodied with seamless tannins, beautiful balanced and immense purity. The oak is well integrated (50%). Wonderful poise on the finish and superb length. Yes, modern in style, but there it is imbued with irresistible purity. Tasted March 2010.

Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, April 2010

From Robert Parker's Hong Kong Tasting, 8th Nov 2011:
Wonderful nose of dark chocolate, blackberries and brambleberries. Full bodied with velvety tannins and a cool and racy finish. This is muscular but sexy. Wonderful length. Try after 2020.

James Suckling, Wine Advocate, November 2011

Loaded with exotic fruit, with masses of crushed blackberry and blueberry. Superclear and fruit forward. Full and velvety, with fresh acidity and a long, long finish. This is almost in your face, but reserved in a way. Superseductive.

James Suckling, WineSpectator.com, March 2010

41% Cabernet Sauvignon, 52% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot. Lustrous dark crimson. Very sweet and opulent on the nose. Very charming and glamorous. Much more of an expression of Merlot than many Médocs in 2009. Big and glamorous - a slightly Italian note. This year obsessed by extraction even more than usual. Prefer to play with press wines later. New from Parsec, a robot that turns though three dimensions. Experimented in 2008 for gentle extraction. Italian elan. Fresh. Date tasted 31st March 2010. Drink 2018-2035.

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2010
Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.