2011 CHÂTEAU DUCRU BEAUCAILLOU 2ème Cru Classé Saint Julien
||Origin: France, Bordeaux
Lea & Sandeman review
Produced from a mere 25 hl/ha after a very severe selection saw 25% of the grapes on the vines after the flowering selected out. They seem to have been even more maniaque
than their neighbours, with sorting at the harvest starting with sorting tables out in the vineyard, as well as the optical sorting machine after the égrappage
. This yield is even lower than the heatwave and drought-affected 2003. 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot. Very classy integrated oak and rich fruit nose. Very supple but the fruit is totally authoritative in its style. Potent, regal ripeness and definition. There is grip to the tannins - unsurprising given they are at the same level as 2010, with higher acidity and less covering alcohol, but the grip merely serves to pull out the long finish. Pretty special.
Other reviews and comments
Strikingly floral Cabernet ripeness, finesse and purity, lovely texture, beautifully expressive almost Margaux style, total opposite to Las Cases. Drink 2017-2030.
Fabulous aromas of blackberries, plums, meat and rose petals. Full body, with special richness for the vintage with a sweetness not seen in many wines. Velvety tannins that are polished and beautiful. 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot. Little more Merlot than normal.
James Suckling, jamessuckling.com
One of the vintage’s stars, the 2011 Ducru Beaucaillou is a riveting blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Merlot. It boasts an inky/blue/purple color as well as an extraordinary nose of creme de cassis, licorice, subtle wood smoke and spring flowers, a surprising, full-bodied mouthfeel, and stunning intensity, purity, symmetry and length. Production at this estate used to be 12,000-15,000 cases, but after instituting a strict selection in addition to the smallest yields ever at this vineyard, it is down to 9,000 cases. The 2011 has considerable tannin, but it is soft and well-integrated. It should drink well for 20+ years. Readers should also be aware of just how sensational the second wine can be.
If you haven’t noticed yet, it’s time to jump on Bruno Borie’s bandwagon for the two wines being produced from separate parts of the Ducru Beaucaillou vineyard.
2012 - 2032
Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
Smallest Ducru harvest in the last 25 years, with 25% of the fruit that appeared in April/May eliminated. A vintage Bruno Borie likens to Nicole Kidman (cf Beyoncé in 2009). 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot. 95% new oak. pH 3.6. Deep dark cherry crimson. Seductive fruit on the nose. Warm and dry and the tannins have great finesse and zero dryness. Puts the many dry Margaux tasted this morning into perspective. Dense but really supple and has a juicy flourish on the finish. Long. And very pure cassis through the middle. 2018-2032
Julia Harding MW, www.JancisRobinson.com
The Grand Vin is a blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot that is being aged in 95% new oak. It has a broody, introspective bouquet compared to the 2009 and 2010 as one would expect, although it is well defined with fine minerality, a seam of dried herbs, a touch of rosemary and thyme underneath a patina of black fruit. The palate is medium-bodied with a fresh, citric entry. There is a slight hardness to the tannins although that will soften in time, although it is still struck through with a tensile streak. The finish has a firm tannic backbone, hints of soy and a saline touch towards the finish. This is an intriguing Ducru that should repay extended cellaring.
Neal Martin's Wine Journal, erobertparker.com
This isn’t quite as good as the 2010 and 2009 Ducrus, but it’s not far behind: a concentrated, yet very polished St Julien from the lowest yields ever at the château. Sweet and intense, with hauntingly floral aromas, notes of cassis, plums and currant, fresh acidity and rich, yet silky tannins leading to a bright, refreshing finish. Powerful yet restrained, this is a keeper. 15+ years.
Tim Atkin MW