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An extraordinary wine, the classic 2008 Latour (13.5% natural alcohol) is composed of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc (40% of the production made it into the grand vin). Its dense purple color is followed by hints of espresso roast, cassis, burning embers, truffles and graphite. Rich with full-bodied power, beautiful purity and graciousness allied to a voluminous, savory, broad mouthfeel, this beauty will be drinkable in 4-5 years and will keep for three decades.
Damn me for saying it, but I actually think the 2008 Latour will turn out to be even better than the 2005 or 2000. I still have a weakness for the 2003, but it is somewhat atypical in how forward, fleshy, and opulent it is. The 2008 Latour is a more concentrated version of the 1996, and that's saying something. The harvest took place between September 29 and October 7 for the Merlot, but the Cabernet Sauvignon finished around the 19th of October. The natural alcohol of 13.48% may be the highest ever achieved at Latour. The final blend is 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc. Moreover, in a low yield year, only 40% of the production made it into the grand vin, so even with the global economic crisis, this is going to be a tightly allocated wine - with under 10,000 cases produced. A fabulous infant, it exhibits an inky/purple color as well as extraordinarily pure notes of creme de cassis, crushed rocks, and flowers. The fact that there is no hint of oak is a testament to the vintage's density and richness. The wine possesses full-bodied power as well as a boatload of tannin, and it is even more backward than Lafite Rothschild. Nevertheless, the hallmark of a great wine and potentially top-notch vintage is the sweetness of the tannin, and that is evident. The wine is young, unevolved, and incredibly pure (another hallmark of this unexpectedly magical vintage) with an amazingly long, textured, layered finish. It should be forgotten for 5-8 years, and consumed over the following four decades
The 2008 Latour has a more bold and concentrated bouquet compared to the Lafite-Rothschild, scents of blackberry, bilberry, iris, cigar humidor and cold wet stone that all surge from the glass. This is beautifully defined. The palate is medium-bodied with firm in tannin, a light marine influence infusing the black fruit, a little spice towards the finish with superb persistency. It is an authorative Latour as usual, one now beginning to enter its stride although naturally it will last for two or three decades with ease. 2018 - 2050
Tasted ex-château and single blind in Southwold. The Latour 2008 has a reserved, slightly tertiary bouquet that if aristocratic and rather aloof compared to say, Lafite 2008. Yet it has immense focus and tension, mineral-laden blackberry, graphite and cassis. The palate is full-bodied with firm, slightly chewy tannins that will take some considerable time to soften. Clean and crisp with unerring symmetry, yet somehow uncompromising and far less generous than say, the 2009. This will require a couple of decades in the cellar, when that embryonic generosity that is demonstrated in barrel will spring forth. Tasted January 2012.
A blend of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot and representing 40% of the production, this Latour has a ripe blackcurrant nose, cedar, crushed stones, just a hint of sous-bois. Full-bodied on the palate, very fine tannins, ripe blackberry, dark plum, a touch of spice, cedar, very "Cabernet". Masculine, but very well poised. Minerally towards the finish. Like the Les Forts de Latour, there is an aloofness about it but it certainly a little sulky on the finish. Hopefully it will gain a greater sense of purpose and ebullience throughout its élevage
Composed of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot, 0.75% Cabernet Franc and 0.25% Petit Verdot, the 2008 Latour gives a medium to deep garnet color and slips sensuously out of the glass with Chinese five spice, unsmoked cigars, sandalwood and dried roses scents over a core of warm cassis, Black Forest cake, chocolate mint and smoked meats plus a waft of black olives and garrigue. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is well-sustained in the middle with generous black fruits and lovely red fruit sparks, layered with savory nuances and a firm, grainy backbone, finishing with bags of perfume and freshness.
Very deep garnet-purple colored, the 2008 Latour has a youthfully subdued nose revealing notes of red plums and mulberries with underlying suggestions of damp earth, iron ore, pencil lead and dried Provencal herbs. The palate is superbly structured with firm, tight-knit grainy tannins and crisp acid supporting the muscular fruit, finishing long and savory.
Offers currant and blackberry aromas, with hints of flowers. Starts as a slow attack on the palate, then builds with superpolished tannins and pretty fruit, offering berries and mineral. Long and caressing
Lowest Merlot proportion ever in the grand vin. The last time there was more than 90% Cabernet Sauvignon was 2004. 'Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot don't complement each other at Latour - Merlot diminishes our Cabernet Sauvignon unless they are very, very old Merlot vines which add texture and density and concentration. The rest dilute it. It's also probably our taste. I just don't like these Merlots - I prefer to keep this precision...'Very dark and rich-looking. Dense and purple. Graphite notes and very dense. Some seductive perfume. Then very ripe start with lots of ripeness. Very firm and confident and pure. Fine stones, very precise. Sucky stones. Still very cool, very neat, very fine. Masses of density stops it being painfully dry on the finish. Very fine sleek and dense - well back on track after '07 by Latour'! One of the most polished Latours but very Latour. Very healthy. Health juice.
The concentration of fruit gives richness to the nose. Cassis, blueberry and sloe all vie for dominance. The tannic cage is firm but the tannins feel ripe, nothing aggressive. Lighter flavours bilberry and some raspberry give a surprising elegance towards the finish. It is a wine with power and style.
(94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc & Petit Verdot; the Grand Vin represents 40% of the whole.) Black-red, terrific expression of blackcurrant fruit, slightly smoky and already complex, really fine floral fruit, really fine clear depth and length, a tight style, firm and classic, full of energy and savoury fruit, excitingly precise, tannins in perfect balance. Drink 2018-40.