|Classification||2ème Cru Classé|
Deep pure purple with a slight edge of blue. Again (like Langoa) a well-rounded richness to the nose, ripe black fruit. Black mineral expression, and some very dry tannic structure, all with excellent depth of flavour. A real pleasure. Rating: 92-92 L&S (Apr 2009)
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The 2008 Léoville Barton has a lovely, heart-warming bouquet of ripe blackberry and cedar, touches of graphite, precise and supremely well focused. Classic Barton. The palate is medium-bodied, fresh and lively with impressive density; structured with a firm backbone on the graphite-tinged and tensile finish that suggests that it deserves another 3-4 years in bottle. Excellent. Drinking range: 2022 - 2045 Rating: 93+ Neal Martin, vinous.com (Feb 2018)
Very deep purple-ruby. Floral aromas of blueberry, blackcurrant and violet. The palate offers lovely balance, with pure black fruit flavors in perfect harmony with fine acids and smooth tannins. Finishes long and pure, with a late mineral surge. Not the last word in concentration but a gorgeous, well-made wine. Rating: 90-92 Ian d'Agata - Stephen Tanzer website (May 2009)
Another blockbuster, long-term wine from proprietor Anthony Barton, this 2008 is among the biggest, most back-strapping efforts of the vintage. As with many vintages of Leoville Barton, it is best forgotten for another decade. An inky/purple color is followed by notes of forest floor, camphor, red and black fruits, and a hint of wood. This brawny, masculine-styled St.-Julien possesses huge body, massive concentration, and mouth-searing levels of tannin. However, the tannins are much sweeter than the 2005's were at the same stage, so that should not be an issue as long as potential purchasers exercise patience. This impressively pure, classic Bordeaux should be at its finest between 2020-2050. Rating: 92-94 Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, www.RobertParker.com (Apr 2009)
Purplish with a lightish rim. Quite integrated nose. Well balanced. Some savour though no great intensity. Very fine tannins and good balance even if not a very firm imprint of personality. Marked tannins on the finish without a great weight of exciting fruit. 2014-19 Rating: 16.5+ Jancis Robinson MW OBE - www.JancisRobinson.com (Apr 2009)
90-93 Roses, blackberries, currants and wet earth. Full-bodied, with velvety tannins and very pretty fruit. Long and juicy. A delicious wine, very balanced. Rating: 90-93 James Suckling, The Wine Spectator (Apr 2009)
A blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc, similar to Langoa this is very ripe and rich on the nose – blackberry, a touch of cedar, fig and Xmas cake. Good definition. The palate is tannic, masculine, good level of ripeness with cedar, blueberry, cassis and blackberry. Very assertive, really lacquers the mouth although I cannot help but think it is a degree too sweet on the prune-tinged finish. Rating: 90-92 Neal Martin, www.robertparker.com (Apr 2009)
Black-red, very good concentration of autumnal black fruits nose, impressively structured fruit, plummy ripeness on the attack, classic firmness on the finish, very good depth and persistence, powerful yet restrained. Drink 2018-30. Rating: 18**** www.decanter.com (Apr 2009)
Château Leoville 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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