In 2021, Tasting Notes
  Bok's Rating:

Ao Yun 敖云2013 versus Malescot St Exupery 3rd growth Margaux 2005
9.5 stars
16 Apr 2021

I have reported Malescot St Exupery 2005 in the past here

Ao Yun has been gathering a lot of attention lately, this wine is produced in the foothills of the Himalayas, near legendary city of Shangri-la in Yunnan province of China. The property belonged to Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessey (LVMH). The CEO managing this project is Jean-Guillaume Prats, who used to run Cos d’Estournel in Bordeaux. I chose this Malescot St Exupery to have a showdown against Ao Yun 2013 which is the first vintage being produced has myriad reasons; First, 2005 is a superb Bordeaux vintage and perhaps it’s a good showdown; Next, a Margaux wine is usually softer and more mellow, not as harsh as a Pauillac perhaps not so ready at 16 years old. Lastly, Malescot’s composition is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot, while Ao Yun is composed of mainly Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc (composition was not revealed by LVMH). Perhaps a fairer showdown would be Sassicaia with the same composition of grape varietals, but I’ll leave it to future reviews. I decanted both wines for almost 4 hours (including dinner it would have been 6 hours), although I had a sip of both wines immediately upon decanting both bottles. Bouquet of Ao Yun has this elevated acidity with a bit of chemical oak funk, and the acidity was reflected in the content as well, however, a simple sip and there are a lot of promising elements inside, and already overtook Malescot by a shoulder as my preference. A couple hours later, I took another whiff, and I was impressed, very mellow fruit and slightly elevated oak profile. A sip and I was sold, I was really impressed with the content, the fruit is very expressive, soft and elegant, more importantly, drinking right next to Malescot, it stood tall, not giving in a bit in terms of overall performance, I really enjoyed the finesse of the wine body, and this is not common for Bordeaux, in fact, Malescot was bold and too rich when compared to Ao Yun. I must confess I never had a bottle of Chinese made wines this impressive until tonight. Perhaps hundreds of years down the road, wines made in China is as common as silk made in China. 敖云带着一丝丝的中国本土风味,非常秀气和优雅,有一种傲视天下,非常独特。

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