Robert Parker 98P
The 2014 Le Désir (53% Cabernet Franc, 21% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Malbec) has an inky purple color and a sweet kiss of chocolate, black truffle, forest floor, black raspberry and black currants. Opulent, but again structured and super-dense and pure, this is another massively concentrated wine meant for the long haul (and for our grandchildren). Give it 4-6 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 35-40 years. Remarkably, Pierre Seillan told me that 2014, while a drought year, was not actually that hot in the micro-terroirs he was working, but in terms of quality, it turned out to be the most surprisingly positive vintage he’s ever witnessed.
This winery, one of the gems of the Kendall-Jackson portfolio of boutique wineries, debuted in 1998 and has been hitting on all cylinders since. I suspect top priority is given to Bordelais winemaker Pierre Seillan’s choice of the finest fruit he can find from Jackson’s holdings in Alexander Valley, Chalk Hill and Knights Valley. There are three Bordeaux-inspired cuvées made, with La Muse the Right Bank Pomerol style of wine dominated by Merlot, La Joie a Médoc-like blend dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, and Le Desir a St.-Emilion-oriented wine dominated by Cabernet Franc. Percentages of these principal grapes all change with the vintage, but those varieties are clearly the strength of each cuvée. Kudos once again to Pierre Seillan!