CHÂTEAU LÉOVILLE BARTON
2006 2ème Cru Classé Saint Julien
|Classification||2ème Cru Classé|
Like Langoa, a very classical profile, marginally more haughty and austere, the Cabernet coming out. How does it manage always to be a different colour to all the other wines - an imperial Roman purple. Lovely rich texture in the nose, layer upon layer of spice and fruit. Very soft salty attack. Finest tannins. Elegance, minerality and purity with great dry concentration. A firm, crunchy-fresh, slightly granular tannic finish Rating: 93-93 L&S (Apr 2007)
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A return to a more classic profile, with silky, dark damson and cassis, more structured tannins and great persistence. A lovely, extremely accomplished 2006, although it is still quite closed and backward right now. Drinking range: 2017 - 2040 Rating: 94 Jane Anson, Decanter(Jul 2017)
The nose is firm with lots of black cherry and sloe but the palate has sweetness of flavour layers of rich ripe fruit. The fruit is supported by the tannins and although firm they feel ripe giving richness and power on the back palate and finish. 2018-30 Rating: 93 Derek Smedley MW, www.dereksmedleymw.co.uk(Dec 2013)
Impressive deep ruby. Very ripe aromas of black raspberry, dark chocolate and minerals, with a note of menthol austerity. Then big, chocolatey and rich, with lovely ripe acids framing the flavors of dark fruits, chocolate and licorice. This is lush in the middle but finishes with a boatload of tannins that currently cut off the wine's fruit. Today the Langoa is almost sweet by comparison. Remarkably creamy and full-flavored for a wine with only 12.8% alcohol; if only this could be accomplished in Napa Valley! Rating: 91-93 Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar(May 2007)
Very balanced and pretty, with violet and currant. Full and silky. Gorgeous. Harmonious. Rating: 92-94 James Suckling, The Wine Spectator(May 2007)
This classically made, dense purple-hued wine exhibits enormous potential, but currently it is forebodingly backward, dense, and broad. Once again, proprietor Anthony Barton delivers a wine with superb concentration, a classic style, and the possibility of three decades or more of ageability. Like most of the finest Leoville Bartons, considerable patience will be required. The 2006 will need 8-10 years of cellaring, and may even rival the 2005. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2035. Rating: 92-94 Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, www.RobertParker.com(May 2007)
An attractive, floral nose with sweet ripe blackberry, blueberry and cedar. Great definition and lift. The palate displays lovely balanced, a succulent core of black fruits with huge grip. Notes of black coffee, liquorish and a tang of salt, slightly bitter on the very unresolved finish. This will need time, a complex, quite intellectual Barton that will come into its own in bottle. Rating: 92-94 ? Neal Martin, www.robertparker.com(Apr 2007)
Deep colour, very fine concentration of blackcurrant and berry fruits, fragrant and almost discreet due to the immense purity of expression, a superbly expressive wine with natural concentration, great freshness and great length. 2015-40. Rating: ***** www.decanter.com(Apr 2007)
Very dark crimson. Sturdy, tobacco leaf, savoury, some leather and then some ripeness and richness. Lots there, lots to draw you in and no excess of dryness even though it is pretty dry - Léoville Barton? Very energetic and even quite electric in terms of its impact on the palate. Seems to fade on the finish and then revives and completes the tasting experience. 2015-25 Rating: 18 Jancis Robinson MW OBE - www.JancisRobinson.com(Apr 2007)
Château Léoville Barton
St Julien Deuxième cru 1855
When the Marquis de Las-Cases-Beauvoir fled France during the Revolution, his Léoville estate was seized with an eye to selling it off. In the end, only a quarter was sold (although a further division occured a few years later), and this was purchased by Hugh Barton who had acquired the neighbouring estate of Château Pontet-Langlois (and re-named it Langoa-Barton) a few years earlier in 1821. The Barton's ownership of Langoa is the longest ownership by one family of any estate in the Médoc.
Hugh's original intention, so it is said, in purchasing a portion of the Léoville estate was to sell it back to the emigré Marquis, but he was an emigré Marquis without sufficient means and the estate stayed with the Barton family, becoming Château Léoville Barton. There was no château attached and the wines were, and still are, made at Langoa.
The Bartons had already been a fixture of the Bordeaux wine trade for a hundred years at this stage - Thomas Barton left his native Ireland in 1722 and settled in Bordeaux, eventually buying Château le Boscq in St Estèphe in 1745. His grandson Hugh, who bought the two Barton estates, developed a wine merchant's business with Daniel Guestier (Barton & Guestier), and the Guestier family proved crucial in protecting the Barton's châteaux during both the French Revolution and World War II when the Bartons had to flee France.
Léoville Barton has 51 hectares in production, the vineyard is of top-class deep gravels - part of the bank that is closest to the Gironde, continuing southward from Las Cases and Poyferré, with Ducru Beaucaillou beyond - with clay underneath. It is densely planted (9100 plants per hectare) with around 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and most of the rest being Merlot.
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