Bordeaux 2016: Ducru Beaucaillou and Leoville Poyferre

Bordeaux 2016: Ducru Beaucaillou and Leoville Poyferre
Today sees the release of two big hitters from the commune of St Julien: Leoville Poyferre and Ducru Beaucaillou. Didier Cuvelier and Bruno Borie’s wines have both excelled in 2016. They are deep, muscular offerings, yet both possess a sweetness and charm that makes them most alluring. Ducru is more introverted and brooding than its seductive 2015 counterpart. It is deeply impressive, a glossy, inky black example, which is true to the Ducru style, but has a slight leaning towards Leoville Las Cases with its linear, taut fruit and chiselled tannins. The Poyferre is an impressive specimen, boasting a spectacular mid-palate and grand scale tannins. Both these wines are deserving of their colossal Wine Advocate scores.

‘The 2016 Leoville-Poyferre is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc. Didier Cuvelier told me that color leeched out naturally and he conducted an 8 day pre-fermentation maceration. Matured in 80% new oak with some malolactic in barrel, it has a typical bouquet for this estate with opulent but neatly controlled, billowing scents of black cherries, black plum, crème de cassis and violets. The palate is beautifully balanced with fine tannin, a killer line of acidity and perhaps one of the most harmonious Poyferré that I have encountered at this juncture. It just glides across the mouth and slips down the throat with consummate ease. Superb. Drink 2024 - 2060. 95-97/100’. - Neal Martin,

‘The 2016 Ducru Beaucaillou is a blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot cropped at 36 hectoliters per hectare between 24 September and 14 October and matured in 100% new oak barrels (for a total of 18 months). The alcohol level comes in at 13.63% with a pH of 3.71. The bouquet is very closed at first, and so I aerated the Grand Vin by transferring from one glass to another. It gradually unfurls to reveal scents of blackberry, bilberry, cedar and a touch of pencil lead. The palate is medium-bodied with a firm backbone cloaked in layers of black fruit. The new oak is probably more present here than some of its peers, but there is more than sufficient substance to absorb that. The mineralité surfaces right towards the persistent finish, completing what is a Ducru Beaucaillou built for the long term. Drink 2026 - 2065. 96-98/100’. - Neal Martin,

We can also offer limited quantities of the 96-98 point Clinet.

‘The 2016 Clinet is a blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon that was picked from 22 September for the young vines, the older vines picked 1 and 2 October, finishing with the Cabernet Sauvignon the following day. It was cropped at 49 hectoliters per hectare and matured in 70% new oak and the remainder in second-fill barrels. It has 14.15% alcohol and a record-breaking 94 IPT. It has a very linear bouquet, quite strict and intense with a light iodine and marine scent merging with the black fruit. This is a more "aristocratic" nose for Clinet, sophisticated and one of the most nuanced I have encountered. The palate is medium-bodied with filigree tannin that forms the foundation of a more masculine Clinet, complex and focused with a subtle spiciness coming through on the finish, which fans out with confidence and leaves a disarming, saline tang in the mouth. Yes, this is a magnificent Clinet, cool and mineral-soaked, both cerebral and lip-smackingly delicious. Drink Date 2024 – 2055. 96-98/100’. - Neal Martin,

Please note that there is currently no stock available