|Subregion||France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > St Julien|
The Barton family'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". The Barton family traditions continue with Anthony's daughter Lilian and her son Damien in charge of the estate. A real Farr Vintners favourite and a true Bordeaux classic.
A terrific success, the 2021 Léoville Barton unwinds in the glass with aromas of blackcurrant, wild berries and plums mingled with hints of pencil shavings, loamy soil and cigar wrapper. Medium to full-bodied, deep and seamless, it's concentrated and tensile, with beautifully refined tannins, lively acids and all the class that an elevated percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon growing in deep gravel can provide. It's the first vintage vinified in the Barton family's new winery, and I suspect that contributes to the ultra-refined quality of tannin this year. The blend is 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Tasted three times.
The 2021 Léoville-Barton was picked from 27 September until 7 October, matured in 60% new oak. The alcohol is 13.12%. It has a clean and pure bouquet with blackberry, bilberry, cedar and hints of shucked oyster shell: focused and very well delineated, classic in style. The palate has a smooth and cohesive entry, very well-knit with beautifully integrated oak. Crisp acidity with the perfect amount of tension on the classically-styled finish, this Léoville Barton demonstrates the advantages of their brand new cellar (even though the reception was not finished in time!) I cannot see any reason not to own a few bottles of this in your cellar.
The 2021 is a more Cabernet Sauvignon-dominated blend than Langoa, with 84% of the blend along with 11% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Deep purple colour. Pure blackcurrant fruit on the nose highlights the high percentage of Cabernet in the blend. This follows on the palate, which is sinewy and focused, the black fruit framed by chewy, dense tannins. Layers of cigar box, cedar and cumin add to the overall depth of this wine. Tightly coiled and unerringly fresh despite its dark fruit, this is a vin de garde that will reward patience in the cellar.
A medium-bodied red with redcurrant, crushed-stone and earth character, following through to fine tannins and a polished finish. Balanced.
The 2021 Leoville Barton is composed of 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, and 5% Cabernet Franc, harvested from 27 September to 7 October. Deep garnet-purple in color, it needs a fair bit of swirling to shake loose notes of fresh blackberries, mulberries, and cassis, plus touches of garrigue, wild blueberries, violets, and licorice with a touch of wood smoke. Medium-bodied, the palate has a rock-solid structure of firm, grainy tannins and a lively backbone with loads of crunchy black fruit layers and an impressive array of savory sparks on the long finish.
St Julien’s location next to the river Garonne saved it from the worst of the frost, and this is one of the best wines in the appellation. It has energy and plenty of depths of fruit to work through, with powerful spice notes of clove, white pepper and turmeric, with the fresh acidities in the cassis and bilberry fruit turned into a prop for propelling things forward through the palate. And even if all this wasn’t the case, this is a wine to buy in 2021 in memory of Anthony Barton, long-term owner and Bordeaux legend, who died in January 2022. 60% new oak. Tasted twice.
84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample.
Minerally and racy with a density that is often missing in 2021. Layers of fruit and plentiful but refined tannins. Structured and persistent, the quality of the vineyard appreciable. Fresh and well defined. Good balance. Definite potential. (JL)
Drink 2029 – 2045