The Vine Clive Coates Juin 2004

Verticale de Richebourg

Richebourg 2002 : Medium-full colour. Bottled two months previously. Lovely soft red fruit nose. Medium to fullish body on the palate. Very good grip. The tannins are soft and ripe. This is potentially very lush and succulent. But by no means a blockbuster. Very seductive. Very fine. 2011-2025. 18.5

Richebourg 2001 : Medium-full colour. This has gone into its shell a little on the nose. Medium-full body. More obviously tannic structure than the 2002. Very good grip. Slightly less rich. Certainly less plump. But more spice. Plenty of energy and distinction. Lovely long complex finish. Very fine. 2011-2025. 18.5

Richebourg 2000 : Suprisingly good colour. Soft nose. A little light but no lack of fruit, elegance, harmony or succulence. Medium to medium-full body. This is excellent for the vintage. Surprisingly voluminous. Fresh and balanced. Ripe and classy. Very lovely. 2012-2042. 19

Richebourg 1999 : Very fine colour. Marvellous nose. Full, concentrated , rich, profound, very elegant and complex. Still very young. Full body. Excellent grip. Very concentrated. Very fine tannins. This is clearly superior to the more recent vintages. Splendid fruit. Very, very long and multi-dimensional. A great wine ! 2012-2042. 20

Richebourg 1998 : Very good colour. Just a suggestion of brown. Fullish nose. Rich, exotic and spicy. A touch of caramel and mocha at present. Cedary flavours as it developed. Fullish body. Some tannin. Very good acidity. Nice ripe, cool fruit on the palate. Plenty of substance and depth. It needs to be kept while the tannins soften up. Very fine. 2010-2030. 18.5

Richebourg 1997 : Medium-full colour. Some maturity. Soft nose. Just a little diffuse after the 1998 and 1996. Medium to medium-full body. Ripe and quite fresh. But a little weak. It lacks bite. Nevertheless very good indeed if not fine within the context of this vintage. Ultimately it lacks depth and dimension, unfortunately. Ready. Now-2007. 17

Richebourg 1996 : Fine colour. Still very youthfull. Rather austere on the nose. Even a slight vegetal, lean touch. Is it always going to be a bit like this, I wondered. On the palate though much more round and generous. Full body. Still some tannin to round off. High acidity keeping is fresh. Long and stylish. This is very fine indeed. 2008-2030. 19.5

Richebourg 1995 : The first vintage with simply Anne Gros on the label. Very fine colour. Just a hint of maturity. Rich, full, very profound nose. A full bodied wine. Plenty of structure but not too solid or tannic. Full and youthful. Still quite a lot of tannin to be absorbed, more than the 1996. But it is rounder, fatter and richer as well. Yet not quite so elegant perhaps. Like the 1996 emphatically a wine for food. But not yet ready. 2008-2025. 18.5