Chateau La Bessane 2005

This wine proved an able advocate for not evaluating wines on a "slurp and spit" basis.  The bottle revealed itself as an unexpected blend of 60% petit verdot, 20% cabernet sauvignon and 20% merlot from Margaux.  The very high percentage of the late ripening petit verdot was presumably a nod to the excellent weather conditions in Bordeaux in 2005.  Personally, I think some of Australia's warmer regions do justice to the petit verdot, so I wasn't sure what to expect.  My initial thoughts were surprise.  Oak and white pepper aromas led to a thin palate that lacked a middle, with coconut and pepper flavours and acidity to the fore.

Then after about 20 minutes, perhaps the full moon was out, because something happened.  A ripe and perfectly pleasant wine, with a nice structure sat on the table.  I think this is a wine for decanting, food and maybe both.  Though, in the end, the start was so bad that I remain a little unconvinced.  84 points (6.8/10)

Abv: 13.5%
Price: $55
Would I buy it having tasted it?  No.
Website: http://www.chateaupaloumey.com/

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