Owned by the Cuvelier family since 1921, the third of the Léoville’s has been regarded as the most lightweight for decades. That changed when Didier Cuvelier took charge in the 1970’s, and a period of continuous improvement now sees this château amongst the finest châteaux of St-Julien. For me this was one of wines of the vintage. Aged in 80% new oak, a big impressive and weighty wine, richly structured, voluptuous and generous.
Very perfumed, with delicious, juicy density on the palate and layer upon layer of gorgeous fruit (freshly picked blackberries) with a wonderful, gravel minerality and earthy complexity. Wonderfully supple, ripe tannins melt on the palate and the length is simply incredible.
Enjoy with a classic beef wellington.
One of the more flamboyant and sumptuous wines of the vintage, this inky/purple-colored St.-Julien reveals thrilling levels of opulence, richness and aromatic pleasures. A soaring bouquet of creme de cassis, charcoal, graphite and spring flowers is followed by a super-concentrated wine with silky tannins, stunning amounts of glycerin, a voluptuous, multilayered mouthfeel and nearly 14% natural alcohol. Displaying fabulous definition for such a big, plump, massive, concentrated effort, I suspect the tannin levels are high even though they are largely concealed by lavish amounts of fruit, glycerin and extract. Anticipated maturity: 2018-2040.
Robert Parker (Wine Advocate #199, Feb 2012) 100 points