This is a sexy and well-formed 2017 with very velvety and suave tannins that go on for minutes. Full-bodied, soft and round. Extremely long and last for minutes.
James SucklingScore: 97-98/100
The 2017 Palmer, a blend of 54% Merlot with 42% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot, is very deep purple-black in color and leaps from the glass with freshly macerated blue and black fruits: wild blueberries, blackberries and black cherries plus hints of licorice, rose hips, tilled soil and oolong tea with a waft of truffles. Medium-bodied, very finely crafted with exquisitely ripe and smooth yet firm tannins and sporting great mid-palate intensity and wonderful freshness, it finishes long and minerally.
Robert ParkerScore: 96-98/100
The 2017 Palmer, a blend of 54% Merlot with 42% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot, is very deep purple-black in color and leaps from the glass with freshly macerated blue and black fruits: wild blueberries, blackberries and black cherries plus hints of licorice, rose hips, tilled soil and oolong tea with a waft of truffles. Medium-bodied, very finely crafted with exquisitely ripe and smooth yet firm tannins and sporting great mid-palate intensity and wonderful freshness, it finishes long and minerally. Apr 2018, www.robertparker.com
Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine AdvocateScore: 96-98/100
It's very interesting to watch a 'super-second' risk scaling back the muscular attributes of its wine. The key, says director Thomas Duroux, was building the blend carefully and using the press wines to preserve the mid-palate (12% press in this wine, around the same as the 2015). It's less powerful and concentrated than the last few vintages, and yet the wine feels sculpted and sewn into place. The fine tannins are extremely clear and precise, and there's a purity of fruit expression that gives an overwhelming initial impression. The aromatics are really striking, offering an abundance of violet notes on the nose with huge finesse. It just gets better and better in the mouth,, and the tannins do that slow-build thing that is so disarming. This has clear ageing potential. Very low SO2 use for the past few years, in keeping with their biodynamic principles. Just one plot of Petit Verdot for the grand vin was hit by frost. Harvested 20-29 September. 11,000 cases of Palmer, representing 55% of the crop.
DecanterScore: 95/100Drink 2026-2040
All the elements of the château come through beautifully in the 2017 Palmer. Dark, succulent and inviting, Palmer expresses the forward, fresh style of the year very nicely. Dark cherry, plum, mocha, chocolate and dark spice notes fill out the wine's frame effortlessly. The 2017 is an understated wine of great promise. I can't wait to taste it from bottle. The blend is 54% Merlot, 42% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot. Technical Director Thomas Duroux told me his team harvested all the fruit in nine days as opposed to the more typical 2-3 weeks. The 2017s were done with no SO2 at crush. Duroux stopped the pumpovers early and favored gentle extractions. Both wines are in the 13-13.2 range of finished alcohol.
Antonio Galloni, VinousScore: 93-96/100
The 2017 Palmer was cropped at 38hl/ha between 20 and 29 September and then matured in 65% new oak (though this sample was taken from a used barrel as usual). For me there is quite a large difference between the Palmer and Alter Ego, the bouquet here is much more sophisticated and demonstrating more delineation: black fruit, iris, brown spices, a touch of clove and a subtle brine influence in the background. The palate is medium-bodied with very fine tannin, crisp acidity, smooth and harmonious with a palpable sense of tension. I love the purity here, almost to an extent that I felt like asking Thomas Duroux to eschew the new oak! This has great potential and I love the typicité that I hope will not be obstructed.
Neal MartinScore: Drink 2023-2050
Black core. A little smoky and reduced, more closed/restrained than the Alter Ego. Tannins are firm but so fluid. The tannins are somehow deceptive, they seem so velvety. Very fresh, subtle and extremely persistent. Incredibly pure, and very long. So fluid (though I have to be careful because apparentlyfluide in French means 'dilute') and incredibly elegant. (JH)
Jancis Robinson MWScore: 17.5-18/20Drink Drink2027-2047
This is solidly ripe, with juicy energy adding extra lift to the mix of plum, cherry and blackberry fruit. A super-fresh iron streak checks in, along with mouthwatering bay and savory notes. This stands out from the pack.—J.M.
Wine SpectatorScore: 92-95/100
One of the more inky, black-colored wines in the vintage, the 2017 Palmer is a powerhouse effort that has a big, rich, chewy style as well as tons of chocolaty black and blue fruits, graphite, licorice, truffle, and hints of violets. A blend of 54% Merlot, 42% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Petit Verdot, harvested between the 20th and 29th of September, it has a powerful, full-bodied style, building tannin, and is impeccably balanced. It’s one of the vintage’s most promising efforts but is going to need 3-4 years of cellaring. It should last for two decades or more.
Jeb DunnuckScore: 92-95/100