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Palmer 2012

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

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Tasting Notes

Château Palmer is one of the vintage’s superstars. Opaque purple, with a gorgeous nose of blueberry, blackberry fruit, licorice, incense and graphite, the wine has a multi-dimensional, skyscraper-like richness, stunningly well-integrated acidity, tannin, wood, and alcohol, a finish of close to 45 seconds and a full-bodied mouthfeel. This is a great wine from Margaux in 2012 and one of the vintage’s most remarkable efforts. The final blend was 48% Merlot, 46% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot. Anticipated maturity: 2022-2040+.

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (218), April 2015

This is mind-blowing with complex and superb aromas of dried flowers, blackcurrants and raspberries. Full-bodied, yet polished and velvety with lots of tension and intensity. Layers of fruit and character. Finishes with pure fruit, hazelnuts and minerals. About 20 hectares of 55 hectares were from biodynamically grown grapes. Try in 2022. Stunning.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, February 2015

Bitter black chocolate, grilled rosemary and cedar and smoked earth, there is momentum and life through the palate, a Palmer that has succulence and pleasure and will be ready to drink now and over the next few decades, providing a welcome pause in the vintages that need long cellaring. It has persistency and gentle cinammon and sage spice. Low yields, around 28hl/h. Harvest October 1 to 15, 60% new oak.

Jane Anson, JaneAnson.com, March 2022

Sweet and voluptuous on the nose. Then lovely well-integrated freshness on the finish. So gloriously smooth. Just a note of that sweet oak I found a bit too much on the 2009 blind tasting in Southwold, but the fruit is absolutely fantastic. Very appetising.

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2013

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. The talented wine-maker is Thomas Duroux who always produces a pure, smooth and elegant wine, with a high percentage of Merlot, that is a wonderful example of the appellation. This year there is more Merlot than Cabernet with the final blend 48% Merlot, 46% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot. The yield was only 28 hl/ha. There is a black colour and a highly concentrated nose of cassis, kirsch and black cherry fruit. The palate is fat, plump, thick and densely textured with slickly polished sweet ripe tannins. Sumptuous and succulent with great purity and focused black fruit balanced by fresh, racy acidity. A sleek, harmonious thoroughbred.

Farr Vintners, March 2013

There is a depth of fruit on the nose and the palate with the rich cassis underpinned by firmer black cherry. The tannins are firm but ripe and rounded with the rich black fruits giving way to fresher black fruits on the back palate and finish. 2018-35.

Derek Smedley MW, April 2013

Palmer's negligible price drop, partly justified by low yields of 28 hectolitres per hectare,
may not make it the bargain of the vintage in 2012, but this is still a special wine. Highly
aromatic, showing sweet, slightly overt vanilla oak, red berry and cassis fruit and more
tannin than appears at first.
Drink: 2020-35

Tim Atkin MW, timatkin.com, April 2013
Read more tasting notes...

The 2012 Palmer's inky/purple color is more saturated than most Margaux's, and it offers complex notes of blackberries, cassis, licorice, truffle and spring flowers. The wine is dense, rich and full-bodied with a muscular appeal, but the tannins, as high as they are, are sweet and well-integrated. None of the new oak used during the wine-s upbringing is noticeable. Interestingly, this wine showed no evidence of dilution from the October 7-9 rainfall. I suspect it will require 3-4 years of cellaring, and should last for two decades.

Thomas Duroux produced a brilliant 2012 Palmer that is unquestionably one of the stars of the vintage. High levels of tannin were up there with their best vintages, at least analytically. The final blend of 48% Merlot, 46% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot results in a style of wine that is totally different than that of its nearby neighbors, Chateau Margaux, Rauzan-Segla and Malescot St.-Exupery.

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (206), April 2013

A wine with a vertical palate for the vintage. Deep and rich with polished tannins, beautiful fruit. Layered and very long. Blueberries, hazelnut, cedar and a mineral, creamy character. Fabulous for the vintage.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2013

Black cherry, blackberry, loganberry, plenty of brambled hedgerow fruits with juice and generosity. A little shorter on the finish than the 2011, but this has so much charm, curls of black chocolate, and a mouthwatering mint and eucalptus kick on the finish. Low yields, around 28hl/h. Harvest October 1 to 15 (under rain, after a dry summer), 60% new oak.

Jane Anson, JaneAnson.com, December 2021
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.