Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2eme Grand Cru Classe, Saint Julien 2018



Like its neighbour LĂ©oville Barton, PoyferrĂ© usually offers good value for money when first offered en primeur. The wines here are more smooth, ripe and fleshy than the seriously structured wines of Barton and Lascases. The result is a delicious St Julien that can usually charm early in its life and can stand the test of time. A frequent winner of blind tastings. Plantings in the 80 hectare vineyard are 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot and 4% Cabernet Franc. Fruit from the younger vines goes into “Le Pavillon de PoyferrĂ©” whilst “Moulin Riche”is made from a separate part of the vineyard. Didier Cuvelier compares the 2018 to his 2010 and talks of “freshness with power”. The blend is typical with a little less Petit Verdot and there is 80% new oak.

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One of the gems in the vintage will be the 2018 Château LĂ©oville-PoyferrĂ©, which is a powerful, incredibly sexy wine based on 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, and the balance Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, representing just 45% of the total production. In the same ballpark as the 2000, 2005, 2009, and 2010, its deep purple color is followed by a rich, opulent bouquet of sweet black and blue fruits, tobacco, and graphite. Both intellectually and hedonistically satisfying, it fills the mouth with fruit, has remarkable purity and precision for such a powerful wine, sweet tannins, and a finish that goes on for nearly a minute. It’s similar in character to the 2009 and will keep for three decades or more. This wine checks in at 14.4% alcohol, with a pH of 3.7, and a massive (one of the highest in the vintage) IPT value of 90. Tasted twice.

Score: 96/99 Jeb Dunnuck, May 2019