During the Primeurs campaign last month, I was glad to have met with David Bolomey, who’s compiled this terrific table that lets you compare the rankings of well-known wine critics, as well as futures pricing. Even if you’re just remotely interested in Bordeaux wine futures, you really should check this out. You can sort by critic, vintage, appellation, etc… It’s very user-friendly, and honestly, a lot of fun to play with.
So, I found myself sorting the wines by critic—and when I came upon Robert Parker, the wine to appear at the top of the list (coming in at 98-100 points with an asterisk no less!) was the name Hosanna (for alphabetical reasons, Cos d’Estourel was actually listed first, but both tied for the top Parker scores)
Hosanna? What is that? It sounds more like a church hymn than a wine producer… Well, sure, Bordeaux is a vast region of 10,000+ producers, so I can’t expect to know them all. However, between living here—and especially working for a fine wine merchant—I’ve by now gotten a fairly decent grasp on the top names. I recognized the other names in the chart, but this one didn’t even sound remotely familiar.
So, I did the usual thing and googled Hosanna: “a liturgical word in Judaism and Christianity…” Oops, not that one. I then inserted “chateau” and this time I got a winery: “Château Hosanna, formerly Château Certan-Giraud, is a Bordeaux wine from the appellation Pomerol…”
Okay, it used to be called something else… that explains things a bit. So, after some brief research, here’s the basics on Parker’s (tied for) #1 rated ’09 Bordeaux barrel sample:
- Appellation: Pomerol
- Planted acreage: 11 acres
- Grape varieties: 70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc
- Soil: mix of clay and gravel
- Production: ~ 18,000 bottles
Chateau Hosanna used to be called Chateau Certan Giraud, but the name changed after it was purchased in 1999 by Estates Jean-Pierre Moueix (same owners of Pétrus). The former property was divided into Hosanna and a smaller plot (just 5 acres) that today is Château Certan Marzelle.
According to the wine’s technical sheet, it was renamed Hosanna because the name evokes “praise and acclamation.” Well, if all it took was 10 years to become Parker’s top-rated wine, then that must be true…