Full Pull Mysterious Margaux

Hello friends. We have the continuation of what is turning into a mid-December tradition: well-priced Margaux seasoned with a healthy dash of mystery:

2014 Maison Sichel Margaux

In 2014 our Sichel Margaux offer was on December 15. In 2015 it was December 18. We’re a tick later this year as I wanted to make sure we had our full parcel in the warehouse and available for pickup this week. It’s the smallest parcel we’ve had of any vintage of Sichel Margaux, so it may end up needing to be allocated. If that’s the case, we’ll allocate on Tuesday at noon so that the wine is ready to go for our two remaining pickup days on Thursday and Friday. Apologies in advance if we have to under-allocate, but I’m confident everyone who orders should be able to get at least a few bottles.

The December timing for this wine makes sense, as it is a near-perfect wine for any holiday dinner involving a large hunk of roasting red meat. As for the healthy dash of mystery, you might remember the story from previous offers, the one where we’re essentially getting fifth-hand information, and even that info has to be redacted. Not exactly the height of journalistic integrity, I know. Sorry. But the wine is so damned good that I’m inclined not to care, and feedback on previous vintages tells me y’all don’t care much either.

Here is that fifth-hand info:
1. At the spring 2014 Bordeaux En Primeur tastings, one of the Sichel brothers…
2. …told the owner of their Seattle import partner…
3. …who told the representative of that import partner who calls on Full Pull…
4. …who told me (Paul Z)…
5. …who is now telling you…
…that today’s wine is declassified juice from world-class winery Chateau [REDACTED] in Margaux.

Could something have been lost in translation at some point? Certainly. But cursory internet research seems to confirm the story, and the wine itself has been phenomenal each time I’ve tasted it. Basically, to get access to this wine, I have to promise not to reveal any Chateau names, and that was a deal I was willing to make. Furthermore, this is not an easy wine to find in the United States. I’m not sure if any markets outside the northwest even have the 2014 yet, and I believe the parcel we have is all we’re going to get.

Maison Sichel is into its fifth generation in Bordeaux. They’ve done a little of everything over the years: negociant, distributor, merchant, exporter, owner of properties, winemaking. They’re woven into the fabric of Bordeaux, and they’re only going to put their family name on something they’re proud of. They have a few different partners in Margaux, and this bottle comes entirely from one of those partners. And it’s a damned good one. As in: a bottle will cost you multiple hundreds of dollars good.

The blend is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, and 5% Petit Verdot (more clues!), and listed alc is 13%. What I’ve loved about all the vintages we’ve offered is that they represent terrific, honest Bordeaux, not over-polished but instead proudly earthy, throwing the kind of come-hither glances that only top-notch BDX can. This one begins with a nose of black plum and cassis fruit, earth, and savory notes of tarragon and black olive. Barrel tones are represented by this smoky cedary aroma that I associate with preparing a cedar plank on a charcoal grill. The overall effect is one attractive nose indeed. We’re accessing this ’14 a bit earlier in its evolution than previous vintages, and how that translates to the palate is more emphasis on velvety primary fruit. Of course because it’s Margaux there is still a sturdy scaffolding of tannin, toothsome and redolent of english breakfast tea. That structure will support a slow-and-steady evolution in bottle, and this is one of those wines that will bring myriad pleasures any time you access it over the next 20 years.

Please limit order requests to 12 bottles (warning: actual allocations might end up more in the 2-4 bottle range), and we’ll do our best to fulfill all requests. The wine is in the warehouse and ready for immediate pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.

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