Thirty Years Warre | 1994 vintage wines

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“There is always an unassailable financial imperative to make as much (good) wine as possible. In 1994, it would have cost a First Growth château (like Mouton Rothschild) 2 million francs (about £200,000) to declassify (i.e. not sell as the ‘Grand Vin’) a 150-hectolitre / 20,000-bottle vat of wine…”
The 1994 Bordeaux harvest was small.

If the Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes were picked before (or after) the September rains, the quality was good.

But Cabernet Sauvignon takes longer to ripen properly, so some winemakers left it until October, trying to dodge the rainfall.

Château Mouton Rothschild managed to bring in its grapes without them getting too wet and made a very good wine in 1994 – comparable to the 1988.

In the Douro Valley of Portugal, 1994 was a widely “declared” vintage that produced classic Port wines of great richness and longevity, such as Dow’sSmith Woodhouse, and Warre’s.
Since a standard 75cl bottle is not large enough to share, we suggest trying a 1.5-litre magnum bottle of 1994 Quinta do Passadouro Vintage Port, brought to life by the great Douro winemaker Dirk Niepoort.
We also have available magnums of the outstanding Lebanese red wine Chateau Musar.

Its 1994 vintage was made in the aftermath of a late summer heatwave.

The resulting wine was, according to Musar itself, “intense (and) richly-concentrated” – which is not always the case with 30-year olds…

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