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Château Léoville Las Cases 2006, Saint-Julien Magnum


"Not surprisingly, Chateau Leoville Las Cases has produced another classic, potentially long lived wine in 2006. Among the Saint-Juliens, it, Ducru Beaucaillou, and Léoville Barton possess the potential for the greatest longevity. Interestingly, when I visited this château in January, proprietor Jean-Hubert Delon offered me two samples, one where the cork had been pulled immediately prior to tasting, and another that had been decanted four hours earlier. Both were superb, but the wine that had had extended aeration was clearly the finer offering. The opaque purple-hued 2006 - only 40% of the crop made it into the final blend - exhibits a personality that mimics the superb 1996. Classic aromas of sweet black raspberries, kirsch, cassis, and subtle toasty oak are followed by a full-bodied, concentrated wine displaying moderately high tannin. This cuvée can often resemble a Pauillac wrapped in the St-Julien appellation, and the 2006 is no exception. A blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14.5% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc, it will require significant cellaring before consumption. Anticipated maturity: 2019-2035+. 95 Points"
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Country: France
Region: Bordeaux
Subregion: Saint-Julien
Vintage: 2006
Colour: Red
Grape Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc
ABV: 13%
Bottle Size: 150cl
Closure: Natural cork
Style: Well built
Drink With: Salt-crusted roast rib of beef

Perfectionist owner Jean-Hubert Delon believes the 2006 Léoville Las Cases recalls the greatness of the 1986 and 1996. The natural alcohol came in at 13.3%, and only 40% of the production made it into the final blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14.5% Merlot, and a dollop of Cabernet Franc.

From Jancis Robinson's Purple Pages:
Like the other wines from this stable such as second wine Clos Du Marquis, this was blended early and put into barrel a month earlier than usual. They are aware that the earlier start to élevage has had a (beneficial) effect on how the wine tastes at this stage, giving it greater smoothness.

The glass already feels weightier than Clos Du Marquis! Very deep purple right out to rim. Big, big difference between this and Clos Du Marquis on the nose – completely different. Rather opulent even. Rich and very fine and intense and certainly pulling out all the stops! There’s finesse here. Even Las Cases is not trying to be big and tough this year. Trying for suppleness and fully ripe fruit. Very lively and fine tannins. Amazing nose even though not that much alcohol. Very neat long finish. 18/20