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Cahors Tradition

by Tom Cannavan 2013

tender These notes accompany our in-depth profile of Cahors. See all UK stockists of Cahors wines on wine-searcher.

Domaine la Berangeraie, Cuvée Juline 2009
Quite a creamy red fruit nose, a touch of strawberry and a touch of sappiness too. The palate has really quite good, inky and deep fruit, perhaps a very slightly astringent finish, but it also has some real elegance. 87/100.

Château Combel la Serre, Cuvée Originelle 2010
Vinous nose, a touch earthy. On the palate a little more juicy, a red fruit character quite light, but spicy, if slightly dilute in the finish. 84/100

Château la Caminade, Malbec / Merlot 2009
Quite a solid black fruit nose, a certain meatiness, a touch of meat stock rusticity. Palate has a little more density and weight, more flesh, with a powerful, full finish. 84/100

Georges Vigouroux, Les Comtes Malbec 2010
Just a touch antiseptic at first, a touch sappy and earthy, but much fruitier on the palate. A nice tight cherry freshness, modest tannins and fresh acidity. 86/100

Château Armandiere, Malbec Ancestral 2010
A little meaty and earthy, with a dark plum character to the fruit. The palate has modest fruit, quite big, drying tannins, and a dry finish of spice. 85-86/100

Château Fantou, Tradition 2009
Fairly generic, vinous nose of dark berry fruit but seems a touch stewed perhaps, a touch of prune and plum. Very dry on the palate, the dryness of tannins as prominent as the fruit. 83/100

Château de Gaudou, Tradition 2011
Very black colour, vibrant and youthful aromas too, kirsch notes adding a little lift. Some of that punchy, more vibrant black fruit comes through, nicely edged by dry tannin and fresh acidity, but a pleasing picture this. 86/100

Domaine du Prince 2009
Back to a more solid, meaty style, the dark colour and blackcurrant and blueberry fruit quite pleasingly brooding. The palate has good concentration. Quite meaty, quite dry and tannic, grippy finish needs food. 86/100

Château de Hauterive 2010
Slightly antiseptic nose, that touch of meatiness but there is fruit too. Plums and a certain fleshiness. The palate is dry and serious, a sinewy, quite muscular quality with spice and a tight tannin structure, but less dry than some, a little more fruit concentration. 86/100

Domaine du Garinet, Cuvée Bonheur 2010
Very youthful black/purple. Bright, focused aromas, the little blue/black fruit lift edged with violet very pleasing. Quite a big mouthful of wine this, and though the big muscular and dry tannins have the upper hand, the fruit is good, and with cherry skin bite of acidity, fresh. 88/100

Pelvillain Freres, Gariottin Selection 2011
Vivid, youthful colour again, and a meaty nose, the slightly animal/Brett note a little worrying but not over-pronounced. The tannins coat the teeth and gums, very dry and savoury, but just about enough fruit. Quite an extracted style. 84/100

Clos du Chene 2010
A little more mellow in colour and in aroma, with a soft, sappy edge and hint of strawberry. The palate has good fruit - it is lighter, the tannins a little more tender, allowing the fruit and spice to come through. A pleasing drinker. 85/100

Château Lacapelle Cabanac 2011
Interesting herbal and even grassy note, but not underripe and not at all unpleasant. Very nice palate, supple and smooth, the tannins nicely balanced by an honest fruit weight and concentration, and really nice acidity. the finishing impressions is spice and fruit, and appealing it is too. 87/100

Château Haut Monplaisir, Tradition 2010
A touch herbal, almost geranium leaf quality, with an undertone of meatiness. On the palate quite juicy, a good squirt of black fruit, a little bittersweet, with nice juiciness against the dry tannins. I like the balance here. 87/100

Château Quattre 2008
Nicely dark fruited nose, quite plummy and mellow even a little chocolaty. The palate has good juiciness too, quite a lot of meaty tannin and spice, but balance is pretty good and it finishes with a bit of tangy freshness. 85/100

Château Eugenie, Tradition 2009
Softening colour on rim, good core of plummy ripe fruit, fleshy and dry character on the nose. Quite a juicy, vinous palate, the tannins fairly drying, but there is a layered quality to this, with some kirsch like freshness and bite. 87/100

Château St Sernin 2011
Very youthful, very purple/crimson edge. Primary fruit aromas, a touch inky and watercolour paint-boxy, leading onto a dry, inky palate of youthful tannin but nicely sappy/inky dry fruit and a promising, quite long finish. 86/100

Vinovalie-Cave des Cotes d'Olt, Tarani Reserve 2009
More mature colour and aromas, with a touch of caramel even to solid red fruit and a little violetty edge just showing through. The palate has a juiciness and a freshness, a nice core of creamy fruit set against the tannins. Dry but balanced and savoury. 85/100

Vinovalie-Cave des Cotes d'Olt, La Patrie 2011
Black with a little crimson on rim. Solid and attractive aromas, not a lot of the cherry/kirsch brightness of some younger wines here. Very dry palate, quite a lot of inky extraction, but actually some nice fruit comes through: plum and dark cherry skins, plenty of spice, giving a fairly nice, savoury finish overall. 86/100

Domaine le Bout du Lieu 2009
A certain meatiness here, much more on the muscular/solid side aromatically than some, a certain inky quality too. Really nice palate: such solidity to the fruit at the core of this, not without charm with a keen cherry edge to the chocolaty plum and espresso hint. The tannins are big but really ripe, and the acid balance is excellent. Very good. 88/100

Mas des Etoiles, Petite Etoile 2010
Savoury, with a gently herbal, meaty character, but solid colour and solid black fruit in there too. The sweetness of fruit comes through powerfully, another very good wine this, with all the components balanced and a long, chewy, but fresh finish. 88/100

Château du Cèdre, Heritage 2011
Another vibrantly youthful colour, and solid fruit, a touch meaty, a touch earthy, but dense black berry fruit is there. Drying in the mouth, the tannins coating the tongue, lots of sour cherry fruit and acidity, and a pleasingly dark and serious edge to this. 87/100

Château les Croisille, Cuvée Château 2009
Less clear aromatically, a slightly more muddied picture, the palate big and powerfully built: a certain four square character, quite meaty and dense, a big wine built for food. 86-87/100

Next: tasting notes for 45 Cahors Prestige level wines

for our in-depth feature The Malbecs of Cahors