Bordeaux 2015: our best buys


Ch. du Tertre. Photograph: Jason Lowe

Ch. du Tertre. Photograph: Jason Lowe

Following on from our list of top-scoring Bordeaux 2015s, as well as those that pulled at our team’s heartstrings, we have put together a wish-list of wines which we think offer the best value, whether Cru Bourgeois or Classed Growth.

Ch. Angludet, Margaux – 16.5/20

What a lovely, rich and fresh wine. Ch. Angludet is always one of the most reliable châteaux. The rich concentration is so generous and rewarding. I love the sweetness at the front of the palate. Good depth, a bit of intensity and lovely tannins that harmoniously combine with an appealing acidity on the finish. Often described as a traditionalist’s wine, this is actually rather delicious. Cabernet provides the power here, but it is so restrained, floral, perfumed and flavoursome. Margaux performed very well in 2015 and this wine is reflective of the quality of the vintage. Given that the price is always appropriate to the quality of the wine here, we have no hesitation in recommending it.

Blend: 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot

Ch. Batailley, Pauillac – 16.5/20

The toasty, ripe plum and cedar nose is extremely welcome and is followed by the freshness which has become a hallmark of the 2015 vintage. The purity of fruit is beguiling, with grippy acidity and tannins. There is some sweetness, but it is allied to a purity which works very well indeed. This is a great example of Claret and Pauillac. It is also excellent value, and a wine which we have no hesitation in recommending again this year. Another very enjoyable wine from this estate.

Blend: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot

Domaine de Chevalier Rouge, Pessac-Léognan – 16.5/20

The creamy blackberry nose on offer here is wonderfully attractive. There is great harmony, structure, and a lovely concentration of pure, mineral cassis fruit. There is a cool stone character here on the palate which is lovely and fresh. A hallmark of the vintage. Harmony, ripe, fleshy fruit and gorgeous juice is all present. This is such a delicate wine. Classy, elegant. Utterly elegant in fact. This is really gentle, approachable and so, so pure. A fantastic wine, this is a must-buy from the vintage.

Blend: 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot

Ch. Moulin Saint-Georges, St Emilion – 16.5/20

All the 2015 wines from Ch. Ausone wowed us and Moulin Saint-Georges is often a leading contender in our category for great-value wine for the table in five years from the vintage, this year was no different. Concentrated fruit is blended superbly with tasty tannins and a deep, blackberry finish. It is a crowd-pleasing wine. Rewarding. It demonstrates all that is good about St Emilion.

Blend: 80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc

Ch. Clinet, Pomerol – 16.5/20

This wine demonstrates why Clinet is currently one of the most exciting properties in Bordeaux. There is an alluring perfume on the nose, which is full of ripe blueberry and redcurrant fruit. The tight kernel of fruit unfurls on the back palate coupled with persistent tannins. The finish is accompanied by an attractive smoky profile, suggesting clever use of oak. With plenty of dense and concentrated fruit, liquorice and blackberries, this is the most enjoyable tasting of this wine en primeur that we can remember.

Blend: 90% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Cabernet Franc

Ch. Grand-Puy-Lacoste. Photograph: Jason Lowe

Ch. Grand-Puy-Lacoste. Photograph: Jason Lowe

Ch. Grand-Puy-Lacoste, Pauillac – 16.5/20

Balance, purity and finesse are the hallmarks of this approachable, intense wine – another fine example from the 2015 vintage. Very pure, fresh and clean, it also has a super attractive palate of blackberry and raspberry. The finish is peppery and full of spice, with some hints of cedar too. I really like this wine. It’s a top-class Pauillac, brilliant Claret and so precise. The velvety palate is polished and direct, but there is lots of interest dancing around the mouth. Another fantastic wine from François-Xavier Borie.

Blend: 74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc

Ch. du Tertre, Margaux – 15.5/20

What a lovely expressive nose: the sweet red fruits combine with violet notes. The palate has structured, yet very fine, grainy tannins. The pure, crunchy red fruit flavours are immediately appealing. Ch. du Tertre always offers great value for money and the 2015 vintage is no exception. Cool, refreshing acidity appears on the finish and the tannins are tremendously well textured. The wine brims with dark fruit flavours, and the fruit is dense, concentrated and luscious. The broad, fleshy fruit profile really appeals. Quite restrained, but precise and quite sophisticated. This is really cool on the finish and so attractive.

Blend: 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot, 10% Cabernet Franc

Ch. Capbern, St Estèphe – 16/20

There is plenty of lovely dark, Cabernet Sauvignon blackcurrant-style fruit on the nose with a twist of black pepper and a touch of oak. The nose is echoed on the palate, but has a slightly broader range of spice and lush, dark fruit. Crisp acidity and ripe, yet quite grippy tannins on the finish will ensure it ages well. Quite flashy overall, but an impressive wine for the price.

Ch. Pédesclaux, Pauillac – 16/20

The weight and style of this wine confirm that it is unquestionably Pauillac in origin. A good, reliable glass of Claret, it has super cedar-wood notes in harmony with the fruit. Dark fruits dominate, with all the usual suspects present, blackberries, currants, cherry and cassis. Carefully judged oak provides touches of pepper, spice and creamy vanilla. Among the wines in its class, this is a very good effort in 2015 and at the top of its category.

Ch. Malartic Lagravière, Pessac-Léognan – 16/20

Offering a dense, opulent style, this is an ambitious effort. Glowing deep crimson at its core, with a lighter purple rim, it is a modern style of Pessac-Léognan, which fits perfectly into the style of the 2015 vintage. More obviously fruity than one might expect of the appellation, it is ripe, with delicious blackberry on the nose and palate. Soft, integrated tannins and a lush, opulent finish complete the picture.

Ch. Cantenac Brown, Margaux – 16/20

This is really appealing and impressive Margaux. If the price fits, then it really ought to be a buy for the early-drinking cellar. Excellent red fruit on the palate gives way to a sublime structure and superb freshness. Sweet and seductive, it is a really delicious glass of wine. Raspberries, cream, ripe red fruit and pleasant tannins combine on a sweet and seductive long finish. Cool and refreshing, a very good effort in 2015.

Browse all the latest releases on or read more about Bordeaux 2015 en primeur here.