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Neal Martin on ’07

Neal Martin, the solitary British contributor to Robert Parker’s website, has released the first part of his report into the Bordeaux ’07 vintage. Starting with his general thoughts (the notes come later this week) his report generally tallies with the emerging consensus on the year.

‘This was a year when it was nigh impossible to predict quality by the name on the chateau entrance and it was more essential than ever, to approach each wine without preconceptions or pre-prepared headlines that disaster had befallen BordeauxIt was more akin to Burgundy, where the skill of the winemaker was paramount. Fortunately, Bordeaux has many skilled winemakers with the financial means to carry out their most stringent measures.’

In common with the majority of his wine critic colleagues, he praises the wines where the winemaker pushed the winemaking process as little as possible, producing attractive, medium-bodied wines for early drinking. And, ‘whilst there are no truly profound dry red wines’ there are, ‘many commendable wines’ to be found across the region, ‘with no appellation really out-performing another’.

Martin gained a small but loyal following when writing under his previous incarnation, The Wine Journal, and has been steadily picking up fans on both sides of the Atlantic since his transfer to the Wine Advocate. We await his notes with interest.