Chateau Marquis D’Alesme Becker
Chateau Marquis D’Alesme can trace its roots all the way back to 1585. 31 years after the estate was created, they began planting vines and cultivating their vineyard. The name of the property, Marquis D’Alesme, comes from one of the early aristocratic families that previously owned the estate.
Chateau Marquis D’Alesme changed hands during the French revolution. In 1809. the Medoc chateau was sold to a Dutch wine merchant, Jean Bekker Terrlink, who changed the name of the property to include his middle name, and Chateau Marquis D’Alesme Becker was born!
The Chateau changed hands many times too long to write about here. I am going to start in 2006. In 2006, Chateau Marquis D’Alesme Becker was sold by the Zuger family to the Perrodo family for 25 Million Euros. This was a logical estate to buy for the new owner, Hubert Perrodo, as he already owned another Margaux vineyard, Chateau Labegorce, which he obtained in 1989.
Sadly, Hubert Perrodo was killed in a skiing accident shortly after buying the property. The estate is currently managed by the daughter, Nathalie Perrodo.
In time for the 2015 vintage Nathalie who is 1/2 Asian and 1/2 French totally redid the Chateau exterior as well as revitalizing the winery to use the state of the art equipment. They dropped the last name Becker and they even built a wine bar where you can have some of their wines and snacks. Let’s talk about this wine from the earlier years before Nathalie took over that I have had in my cellar for about 14 years.
2005 Chateau Marquis, D’Alesme Becker, Margaux
The 15 hectare Left Bank vineyard of Chateau Marquis d’Alesme is divided into 3 unique terroirs and soils. They have a section of the vineyard with silica and gravel soils situated close to the D2 road is planted to 63% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc.
This shows a marked increase in the amount of Cabernet Sauvignon and new plantings of Cabernet Franc. There is a parcel located next to the chateau that consists of silica and gravel soil and some clay in the terroir that is planted to 100% Merlot. The third parcel is made up of younger vines and used for a second label. The Chateau is a 3rd Growth Grand Cru Classe assigned during the Classification of Bordeaux in 1855. The vines are currently about 40 years of age and they practice 100% sustainable farming. Their wines are aged for the first 3 months on their lees (Dead Yeast ) and for 18 months in 60% New French Oak.
The Chateau claims that their wines of today are way more exciting than anything prior to the 2010 vintage. Well, 2005 was a MONSTER Vintage so let’s see if I am excited or not about an older vintage.
OFF THE BAT WARNING. 2005 was a powerful vintage. This wine needs a MINIMUM OF A 3 HOUR DECANT and actually has plenty of years ahead and was more reviewable on DAY 2
After 3 hours in the decanter and a slight chill I was able to review. Most of my notes are from DAY 2 as it needs more time in the cellar. Dark bright ruby red in the glass with a brick to pink meniscus indicating it’s 15 years of age. Aromas of Blackberry Liqueur, Strong Coffee, Floral Scents, Tobacco, Vanilla and Lead Pencil Shavings. Very harmonious in the mid palate of juicy red and black fruits mingling together as it ends with a velvety yet still drying tannin grip that indicates plenty of more time for this wine to get even better. I think hearty beef stews, lamb, flank steak as well as earthy root vegetables such as beets and wild mushrooms. I went with a mature aged firm dutch Prima Donna Cheese and it paired beautifully. For certain a wine with a meal and not to sit out by the pool with. I score this 2005 91+ points out of 100, but would like to re visit this vintage in 5-8 more years. I can only imagine what their 2015 and 2016’s taste like if the Chateau says they are way more exciting than vintages prior to 2010. This was a solid Margaux.
I would recommend leaving your 2005 Bordeaux in the wine cellar in this price range or higher. If not, remember a minimum of 3 hours in a decanter prior to drinking. I always was a fan of Margaux and they are always more feminine in style than the muscular Pauillacs. This is the kind of wine you only share with people who appreciate dry wines. If they are fans of Napa Cabs….LOCK YOUR WINE FRIDGE. They will miss the 15 grams of Sugar this wine does not have. Kudos to a great Chateau in a great appellation with a great history. I look forward to trying some of the later vintages. For a wine in the $45 price range… well worth the investment. It’s even better on DAY 2!!
Grape-fully yours, Larry
Marjolaine Maurice de Coninck, Winemaker at Chateau Marquis d’Alesme, left, pours a glass of 2014 Chateau Marquis d’Alesme wine for Nathalie Perrodo-Samani (Owner of Chateau)