The aromatically complex 1979 Chateau Palmer, Margaux
The mature wines of Chateau Palmer have given me great delight over this past year. A bottle of 1979 Chateau Palmer, Margaux tried at our last house is just one example. Unfortunately, I cannot find the empty, packed away bottle so I have included a picture of another bottle purchased at the same time. The 1979 vintage represents traditional Palmer in that it is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot of which the Merlot was in large proportion. More recently, the Petit Verdot has been replaced. The grapes themselves were de-stalked by hand through a lattice-work table then fermented in oak vats. All of these methods are no longer employed.
This particular bottle had top-shoulder fill and came from an entire parcel I found in the dump-bin. The nose proved fantastic! Though there was still some ripe fruit in the mouth with acidity and structural components to support future life, it was a bit firm. I purchased these bottles several years ago when I knew nothing about old vintages of Palmer. My only regret is that I walked away with only two bottles. I should have bought the entire lot! This wine was purchased at MacArthur Beverages.
1979 Chateau Palmer, Margaux –
Imported by Parliament Import Co. This is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. Alcohol 11%-14%. To-shoulder fill. Drunk over two-hours the nose was beautiful with complex aromas of wood box, berries, and ripe fruit. The red fruit showed more firmness in the mouth with acidity and noticeable drying tannins. It is clear this wine will live for many years but right now it is good with its offer of a little, deep fruited ripeness at first. It wraps up with cedar notes and firmness. Four stars for the nose but overall: *** Now – 2020.