While the 2008 is not a blockbuster, it is a strong effort for the vintage. This dark plum/purple-hued wine reveals some background oak, licorice, earth, plum, black currant and cherry notes intertwined with a foresty/mossy component. Deep, polished and medium to full-bodied with sweet tannin, it builds incrementally on the palate. This impressive 2008 will benefit from 2-3 years of cellaring and should drink well for two decades.
A blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot and 9% Petit Verdot. Moderate intensity on the nose, black fruits, a touch of soot, tobacco and smoke. Good definition but needs to coalesce. The palate is medium-bodied, grainy tannins, nice weight and acidity. Fresh and as always, full of character. The finish has a touch of spice and cedar to it - more Cabernet than usual. This is a restrained but nicely focused Gruaud. Tasted April 2009.
Plummy and perfumed, with sweet spices and currants. Lovely subtle nose. Full- to medium-bodied, with fine tannins and lovely balance. Ripe and pretty fruit. Could get even better
Mid crimson with a pale rim. Very sweet for a St-Julien. Almost right bank ripeness. Sweet start. Not as classical as most St-Juliens. More forward and winning! Attractive drink for the medium term. Hint of chocolate even. Medium charge of tannins. Polished silky texture. Very beguiling.
While it is not the 2000 or 1990, the 2008 is the finest Gruaud Larose I have tasted in eight years. Not a blockbuster, it is more beefy and dense than other recent vintages, revealing notes of pine forest, smoke, herbs, licorice, black currants, and cedar. With high but ripe tannins, medium to full body, and a strong finish, it will benefit from 2-3 years of cellaring, and should keep for 20 years thereafter.