Château Laroque: "Saint-Émilion's brightest rising star”

22 February 2024

Laroque 2021 is a sublime wine that will appeal to classicists as well as those with more contemporary tastes. With lower alcohol and a delicate purity, it demonstrates an ethereal quality that defies its modest price tag. However, the lower alcohol certainly does not mean it lacks substance. On the contrary, there is a vibrant core of beautiful Merlot fruit offering well defined notes of red berry fruits, plums, brambles and hedgerow. The limestone plateau imparts a wonderful freshness, with a gorgeous saline lift to the long, graceful finish.

This magnificent château, occupying an enviable position in Saint-Christophe-des-Bardes, was long considered the sleeping giant of St Émilion. For years the wines never reached anything like their potential, until in 2015, David Suire, formally of Pavie Macquin and Larcis Ducasse took the helm and steered a different course… Now the wines are firm favourites of the J&B team, offering some of the best bang for your buck in Bordeaux. We highly recommend this slightly more restrained version of the house style – as Antonio Galloni advises, it’s not to be missed!

"The 2021 Laroque is a standout. Bright and racy, with tremendous persistence, Laroque stakes its claim as Saint-Émilion's brightest rising star. Bright limestone accents run through a core of red/purplish fruit, rose petal, mint and white pepper. There is a linear intensity to Laroque that is hugely appealing. Technical Director David Suire fashioned a gem. Don't miss it. 93-95/100Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com

The 2021 Laroque opens in the glass with aromas of dark, minty berries, orange zest and toasty oak, followed by a medium to full-bodied, fleshy and layered palate with a sweet core of fruit, supple tannins and a long, mineral finish. This has turned out very nicely in bottle, and given its low-pH profile, it's likely to reward some bottle age. 92+/100” William Kelley, The Wine Advocate

"The 2021 Laroque has upped its game in recent vintages under David Suire. It was cropped between 1 and 15 October at 41hL/ha, and matured in 50% new oak. It has a refined bouquet with brambly red fruit, light undergrowth and mineral scents. The palate is medium-bodied with fine-grain tannins, poised and again, mineral-driven thanks to its limestone soils. This latest release continues that fine run of form but will be more approachable than recent vintages. 91-93/100” Neal Martin, Vinous.com

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