One of the stars of the Northern Medoc UGC. Gruaud has been steadily improving and this is a very fine effort. It is also one of the few Chateaux on the left bank that has just about the same vineyards as when they were classified in 1855. It is just about one plot which surrounds the impressive chateau, so this is a terroir wine! Sultry, dark, inky, with notes of pencil shavings, graphite, minerals, bramble fruit, Sanguinello oranges and wild strawberries. This is very impressive and inviting with a wealth of dark fruit. A real success.
Château Gruaud Larose is situated on the Saint Julien terroir just next to the village of Beychevelle, slightly deviated from the “Route des Chateaux”. While the surface of the appellation is quite small it assembles the greatest concentration of Cru Classé wines in the Medoc. The vineyard is stretching over 82 hectares of gravely soil overlaying calcareous clay which gives a fine wine with character. As a result, it was classified Second Grand Cru in 1855. This is one of the few estates that comprises the same vineyards as they did at the time of the 1855 classification. Old vintages from the 60s and 80s prove what this terroir is capable of. After a dip in form at the beginning of the Millennium, the estate is back on track producing wines of second growth quality.
St-Julien may not have any first growths like its neighbour Pauillac but has a raft of high-performing Châteaux in its ranks, second through to fourth growths, Including Ducru-Beaucaillou, Léoville Las Cases, Léoville-Poyferré, Léoville-Barton.
Gruaud-Larose and Talbot. For many St-Julien is quintessential claret, robust, powerful but refined subtle and poised. Gravelly soils dominate, hence wide plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon with some Merlot.