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Cahors: taming the tiger

While Argentinian Malbec may be stealing the limelight, the best producers in its homeland of Cahors are welcoming in an era of finesse and elegance. Stephen Brook highlights the stars to watch...

Top 12 wines from Cahors

Jean-Luc Baldès, Clos Triguedina, Probus 2009
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Spicy, savoury black fruits on the nose. Concentrated but very suave with splendid fruit and opulence, ample structure and good length.
Price £31.75-£32 Exel Wines, Joseph Barnes
Drink 2015-2024
Alc 14%

Domaine La Bérangeraie, Cuvée Maurin 2009
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Plummy but not raisiny nose, forthright, with some liquorice. Full-bodied and almost tarry, concentrated, powerful but not hot. Fleshy, creamy, long.
Price £15.99-£17.99 Selfridges, The Solent Cellar
Drink 2014-2020
Alc 15%

Château de Chambert, Grand Vin 2008
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Oaky, dense, blackberry and cherry nose. Full-bodied and compact, it has great concentration, but the tannins are fine-grained and there’s good acidity. Still a touch severe but this has a fine future.
Price £22-£26.99 Widely available via UK agent Liberty Wines
Drink 2015-2022
Alc 13.5%

Château Les Croisille, Divin Croisille 2009
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Complex, oaky nose of cappuccino and plums, this is toasty but elegant. Suave and velvety, this is very tannic and concentrated. A bit overbearing but has good acidity and a long fleshy finish.
Price £25 Humble Grape
Drink 2015-2024
Alc 15%

Château Lamartine, Expression 2009
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Torrefied nose, with rich black fruits and mocha notes, yet also some lift. Broad but very concentrated, it’s full-bodied and powerful, with suave tannins and a solid, darkchocolate finish. Long.
Price £22.50 Imperial Wine Co
Drink 2015-2022
Alc 14.5%

Château de Mercuès, Cuvée Malbec 6666 2005
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
From densely planted vines, this has a ripe, sumptuous, oaky nose. Very rich and dense, Lively and spicy, with fine depth of flavour. Long.
Price £36.09 General Wine Co
Drink 2014-2022
Alc 14%

Métairie Grande du Théron, Cuvée Prestige 2011
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Voluptuous cherry nose, with a touch of mint. Very ripe and rounded, but fine acidity keeps it taut, intense, balanced and pure. With drive, poise and persistence.
Price £9.90 (2008) The Wine Boutique
Drink 2014-2022
Alc 14.5%

Château du Cèdre 2010
17/20pts (90/100pts)
Opaque red, with a spicy, oaky, black cherry nose. Fresh attack, concentrated but lively, with vigour and structure but not too much extraction. Long.
Price £18.50 Bancroft Wines, Lea & Sandeman
Drink 2014-2022
Alc 13.5%

Clos Troteligotte, K-Or 2012
17/20pts (90/100pts)
Powerful plummy nose. Full-bodied and very concentrated, ripe and succulent, with good acidity and ample drive and force. Long, peppery finish.
Price £14.99 (2011) Cambridge Wine Merchants
Drink 2015-2022
Alc 13.5%

Château Haut-Monplaisir, Tradition 2009
17/20pts (90/100pts)
Rich, minty, cassis nose. Plump, rounded and packed with fruit, balanced by firm ripe tannins, this has fine structure. Punches above its weight.
Price £13.50 Eton Vintners
Drink 2014-2020
Alc 14.5%

Château Pineraie 2010
17/20pts (90/100pts)
With a lively, fruity, cherry nose, this is ripe and juicy, broad yet with verve, and still has some tannic backbone. Long spicy finish.
Price £9-£11 Ake & Humphris, All About Wine, Best Cellars
Drink 2014-2018
Alc 13.5%

Château Vincens, Cuvée Prestige 2011
17/20pts (90/100pts)
Subdued oaky nose, with notes of cherry pie. Broad, juicy, chocolatey, assertive, with a firm tannic backbone.
Price £12.99 Cambridge Wine Merchants, Rude Wines
Drink 2014-2022
Alc 15%

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