Anthony Barton's second growth is always a top quality Bordeaux of classic proportions. Structured, Cabernet Sauvignon dominated wines are produced here that are serious, controlled and pure. The 50 hectare vineyard is planted 74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Always the epitome of Saint Julien and the ultimate "Englishman's Claret". 86% Cabernet Sauvingon in 2016 - the highest ever proportion in the blend - with 14% Merlot. Deep colour. A classic nose - precise in ripe but cool blackcurrant, hints of tobacco and cedar, and a little vanilla. Very enticing. The palate is powerful yet controlled - black fruits hold the core with great intensity. The tannins, while firm, are ripe and extremely refined, allowing notes of violet, dark chocolate, cedar and spice box to emerge through the mid-palate and onto the finish. Long, fine and precise, this is a really superb Leoville Barton, and a standout wine for us from the 2016 tastings.
|Score: 17.5+||Farr Vintners, April 2017|
The 2016 Leoville-Barton is a blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon and 14% Merlot picked from 29 September until 13 October, matured in 60% new oak and delivering 13% alcohol. It has a more intense bouquet compared to the Langoa-Barton, plenty of intense blackberry and raspberry fruit, minerals, cedar and a hint of licorice. The palate is a little chewy on the entry with good grip in the mouth. This demonstrates the backbone of the finish, just the right amount of spiciness with excellent salinity on the long finish. It is not a once-in-a-lifetime Leoville Barton, but (as usual) it just seems to do everything right. Maybe it's not quite up there with the stellar 2015 Léoville Barton, which I re-tasted at the time, but it is not far off. Drink 2026 - 2055.
|Score: 93/95||Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (230), April 2017|
Tight and chewy with a solid tannin structure and depth of fruit. Full body and lots of depth and texture. A Barton with lots happening already. Develops beautifully on the palate. Should be better than the 2015.
|Score: 95/96||James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, March 2017|
The 2016 Léoville-Barton is superb. Precision, nuance and delineation are the signatures in a wine that speaks to class above all else. Eloquent and nuanced to the core, the 2016 is simply magnificent. There is a fair bit of tannin, but the grain is very, very fine. The 2016 is not a huge Léoville-Barton, but it is a wine of nobility and pedigree. Tasted two times.
|Score: 93/96||Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, April 2017|
Rich and ripe on the nose the fruit is sweet the palate has a mix of rich cassis and black cherry. Discreet tannins underpin the mid palate has depth and sweetness the back palate a rich mix of fruits. There is enough freshness to balance and although lighter toward the back it finishes with depth of flavour. 2026-40
|Score: 94/96||Derek Smedley MW, DerekSmedleyMW.co.uk, April 2017|
Making no concessions to sensitive taste buds during en primeur week, this is an unashamedly firm, tannic, densely constructed St Julien that needs at least another decade in bottle. Oaky, firm and compact, with layers of damson, graphite and blackcurrant fruit and a grippy finish. 2027-40
|Score: 93||Tim Atkin MW, timatkin.com, April 2017|
Dark blackish purple. Less obviously aromatic than Langoa. Tea-leaf notes. Round texture with gloriously ripe tannins. Really a standout Barton. So unusually supple! Yet with masses of tannins underneath. This will surely be one of the vintage's longer-living wines. Glorious texture and flavour. Utterly minerally dry, but not drying. Very good freshness – much fresher than many of its peers. Real energy.
|Score: 18||Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2017|
Restrained but textured, a confident delivery of lashings of cassis, bilberry and blackberry fruits. This is an exceptional Léoville-Barton that sacrifices none of its St-Julien signature while delivering a powerful, beautifully sculpted wine. This is a total triumph, my favourite for years at this property.
Drinking Window 2027 - 2050
|Score: 96||Jane Anson, Decanter.com, April 2017|