Châteu Malmaison is a value play, producing solid Bordeaux at a very attractive price year after year. With the 2005 vintage in Bordeaux being lauded as classic, I had high hopes for getting some serious quality for my dollar.
In 1973 Baron Edmond de Rothschild purchased Châteu Malmaison which at that time consisted of a decaying winery and 24 hectares of neglected vineyard. Between 1974 and 1978, the winery was renovated and vineyard replanted to approximately 67% Merlot and 33% Cabernet Sauvignon. 1988 vintage marked the first release, utilizing grapes from the mature vines. Since 1997, widow of Edmond, Baronne Nadine de Rothschild continues the custom of the estate.
This 2005 does not disappoint. Blend of 80% Merlot 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. Dark purple color. Dark berry, black plum, currant, spice, dust, some oak. Decanted for approximately one hour; still tight with aggressive tannins, softened slightly over several hours. Full bodied, ripe, layered flavors, good structure. Highly recommend at this price point – needs more time, so lay it down for another 2-3 years. Total production of 8,335 cases.