This estate has been on fire in recent vintages, and the 2018 Château Léoville Barton is up there with the best of them. Based on 82% Cabernet Sauvignon and 18% Merlot that was brought up in 60% new French oak, this classic, flawlessly balanced, straight-up awesome Saint-Julien has loads of cassis and mulberry fruits as well as notes of freshly sharpened pencils, leafy tobacco, chocolate, and earth. Rich, medium to full-bodied, and concentrated on the palate, it has building tannins and healthy acidity, yet the fruit is pure, perfectly ripe, and wonderfully integrated with all the wine's components. As is normal with this cuvée, it closes down with extended air and is going to take a solid 8-10 years of bottle age to reach the early stages of maturity. It's going to evolve for 30-40 years in cold cellars.
Sweet berries, blackberries, raspberries and violets follow through to a full body with extremely creamy, polished tannins that caress the palate. It’s really long and polished. Gorgeous finish.
In this wine, fine and rich tannins partner with powerful black-plum and black-currant fruits. Densely textured while also having swathes of rich fruits, the wine shows both a firm side and one that offers total deliciousness. As it matures, both these aspects will come together. *Editors’ Choice* (RV)
Cassis, crushed plum and steeped blackberry fruit is all packed into this wine, along with tar, violet and roasted apple wood notes, plus a terrific tug of warm earth. Shows lots of energy in reserve, with a tightly knit finish pulling everything together. Cellaring required. *Highly Recommended* (JM)
Well-polished blackcurrant, cassis and bilberry, everything pretty silky and firm. Not fully showing its generosity at this point but no question that it is going to get there soon. Clear charcoal, graphite and woodsmoke as it opens up. A ton of life ahead, and an appealing sense of mint freshness. Lives up to its en primeur promise - this is Léoville Barton at its most confident. (JA)
The 2018 Léoville-Barton is a gorgeous, exotic wine. Crème de cassis, lavender, menthol, licorice and cloves race out of the glass. The 2018 marries the natural opulence of the year with a pretty classic sense of structure, making for one of the more compelling wines of the year. I would give this a good decade in the cellar. There is much to look forward to. I especially admire the energy and poise here. (AG)
Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2018 Léoville Barton needs a little swirling to coax out delicate notions of fresh blackberries, mulberries and cassis, plus touches of pencil shavings, clove oil, charcoal and black truffles. The medium to full-bodied palate delivers a great intensity of earth and mineral-laced black fruit flavors, supported by firm, ripe, grainy tannins and seamless freshness, finishing on a lingering ferrous note. Give it a good 4-5 years in bottle and drink it over the next 20 years+. (LPB) 94+
Dark and brooding on the nose, with savoury spices and earthy blackcurrant fruit. Superb depth of dark cassis fruit and brilliant retained freshness of acidity. For now, the oak is a little obvious but that is no worry, there is such intensity and such a bold tannic structure that this is best left in the cellar longer than most. Robust, grippy tannins amply frame the fruit and add to the sense of gravitas here. This is a wine that takes the ripe concentration of the vintage and wraps it in house style – freshness and structure. Excellent. 18/20 points (TP)
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