More open than many 2015 St.-Juliens at this stage in spite of the firm, dry tannin structure behind the bright cassis. The tannins need some integration, but with some patience (from 2021 or 2022), this will become a rather fine wine.
Medium to deep garnet colored, the 2015 Branaire-Ducru reveals notes of blackcurrant cordial, plum preserves, and fruitcake, with touches of Indian spices and fragrant soil. The medium-bodied palate is packed with juicy black fruits, supported by ripe, grainy tannins, finishing long and layered.
Tasted blind. Dark garnet. Correct but not glamorous or intense. Quite a sweet start then the tannins – not the ripest – come to the fore. A bit insipid on the end.
Bright quite light the bilberry and bramble on the nose is fresh and the start of the palate firm. There is mid richness good depth of flavour the cassis and black cherry is backed by dark chocolate. Brighter at the back the finish has freshness and length.
This was comparatively backward and closed when I tasted it, still showing a slight
angularity that should soften in barrel. The components are there: sturdy Cabernet-based
fruit, fresh acidity and good depth. Drink: 2022-32
With trademark Branaire élan and lush swathes of black and red fruit, this is a lovely, open wine on the nose and yet
the palate is leaner and more focussed and it sharpens up and lengthens in an impressive manner. It is rather cool and
refreshing on the finish which provides a dramatic counterpoint to the exotic scent.
The 2015 Branaire-Ducru is a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot and 4% Cabernet Franc that was picked between 18 September until 8 October, with two or three intervals in between. Matured in around 60% new oak (although as usual my barrel sample was from a new oak barrel), it has a high-toned, black cherry and cassis scented nose that perhaps feels a little constricted by the new wood in this sample, though not necessarily once in bottle. The palate is medium-bodied with a lightly spiced entry, white pepper and a touch of sage, gritty tannin, foursquare and a little conservative. There is commendable weight on the finish, if not quite the precision compared to its peers. I noticed this gaining more cohesion in the glass, which bodes well for once the Branaire-Ducru is in bottle. I expect this to rest at the top of my banded score. Drink: 2020 - 2040.
This is very structured and tight with chewy polished tannins and blueberry, blackberry. Full and savory. Should develop beautifully.
Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the 2015 Branaire-Ducru has an earthy nose over a core of red and black currants with hints of tapenade, pencil shavings and sage. The medium-bodied palate is firm and chewy, with just enough fruit and a lively finish. 2019 - 2031
Deep ruby/crimson. Correct without being stunning. A little more attenuated than one might have expected given the vintage. Just slightly stringy on the end.
Bright crimson. Slightly occluded nose. Could do with a little more precision and freshness but it's certainly absolutely typical. Hint of mint on the end.
Dark ruby. Sweetly gamey on the nose. A little light compared with some but very correct. Quite advanced. But just slightly austere in style. No one could object but I can't imagine many falling madly in love. Stones on the finish.