TN '83 Mouton - Printable Version

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- Karena Shannon - 01-12-1999

This is the way to celebrate your anniversary. We were delighted to have this with Prime N.Y.’s in a shittake-red wine reduction made with a half cup of the previous day’s ’95 La Cardonne. Good fill, cork looked to be in good condition,
Color was medium red, no brown at edge. After an hour to an hour and a half in the decanter, a very complex nose was revealed. Black currants, strawberries, tobacco, smoke, passion fruit(!): we smelled something different every time we went back, but did not pick up the “lead pencil” that I understand is typical for this property. Probably could sit on this wine a little longer, but we found it very enjoyable right now. The wine wasn’t as silky or as big as the ’85 Latour that Tex brought to the Napa Off-line, but it was much more complex on the nose. It’s hard to picture what a “great” vintage of this wine must taste like!
Picked this up almost three years ago, so the price was “reasonable”. I’m not sure I’d drop, what…the buck-eighty that this now commands on the secondary market (which is still cheaper than the 250 that the ’95 and ’96 are going for now).
A funny thing though, this wine wasn’t all that great for the first sixty minutes it was open. I mean, it wasn’t bad, but if we’d tried this at a tasting, we’d have wondered what all the hype and fuss for this chateau was about. It really brought it home for me that wine tasting is rather subjective and irreproducible. To quote a cliché, all we’re really getting when we taste a wine is a snapshot of it, at that particular moment in time. All of our anecdotes about opened bottles of wine changing over a day or two in the fridge---sometimes getting better, most of them turning to vinegar---further reinforce this idea. In addition, this continues to call into question for me the aura of absolute finality that many critics attach to their judgments.