The 2014 Le Dôme was tasted directly after its lieutenant, the Vieux Château Mazerat, and to be frank I found that the latter had overtaken the Le Dôme in its slipstream. Sure, the Le Dôme comes replete with attractive black cherry, allspice and black truffle aromas, although I discerned more complexity conferred upon the Vieux Château Mazerat. The palate is medium-bodied with a rounded, generous opening, quite rich and heady as usual, although the acidity keeps a rein on the things. It is a voluminous Le Dôme, but I still uphold that this would have benefited from a shorter cuvaison period.
Le Dôme is a single vineyard less than three hectares in size and is owned by Jonathan Maltus of Château Teyssier fame. Le Dôme represents the highest proportion of Cabernet Franc in wine of this level from Bordeaux. Seventy percent of the vineyard is dedicated to this variety and the rest is old vine Merlot. The vines were planted in the 1950's on sandy soil and the yield is reduced by up to three runs of green harvesting.
Concentration and definition are therefore the watchwords for this benchmark wine. The grapes are harvested at the precise moment of ripeness, hand-picked and after double-triage are transported into wooden vats. Secondary fermentation in French oak barrels is followed by a traditional approach to ageing. The production of Le Dôme is not large. What little exists, however is made with no expense spared in the pursuit of excellence.