One of the leading "Super-Second" growths of the Médoc. The vines are situated alongside those of Chateau Latour, just over the St Julien border. The young Cabernet vines and older Merlot vines are used for the "Petit Lion" label. The most Pauillac-like of all the Saint Juliens with a strong Cabernet Sauvignon character. Much of the Merlot now goes into Le Petit Lion which is 45% Merlot in 2018. The vines further inland from the "enclos" are used to make Clos du Marquis. The 2018 grand vin is 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 11% Cabernet Franc and is being aged in 90% new oak. The yield was 35.5 hl/ha and the alcohol level is 14.49%
|Bordeaux||2018||Leoville Las Cases||BT||1||0||2,150.00||12||12||238.888888||99.00||99.00||Leoville Las Cases||0.75|
|Wines are offered subject to remaining unsold. E&OE.|
The 2018 Léoville Las Cases is composed of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot, harvested September 15 to October 4 with yields of 35.5 hectoliters per hectare, it has 14.49% alcohol and was aged in 90% new barriques. Deep purple-black colored, it needs a fair bit of coaxing to reveal striking scents of blackcurrant pastilles, wild blueberries and redcurrant jelly, giving way to notions of crushed rocks, lavender, Indian spices, unsmoked cigars and black truffles, plus a provocative waft of rose oil. The full-bodied palate is densely laden with black fruit preserves and earthy layers, accented by bright, lively red berry and floral sparks. It has a rock-solid frame of firm, ripe, grainy tannins and bold freshness, finishing very long and wonderfully minerally. The tannins are so beautifully approachable even at this youthful stage, making it delicious to drink now, but afford it 5-6 years in bottle to allow those finer nuances to emerge and drink it over the next 40+ years. Drink 2026-2066.
The 2018 Léoville–Las Cases, which was picked at 35.5hl/ha and matured in 90% new oak, still shows the exuberant floral bouquet that I remarked upon from barrel, featuring violets and (less so) lavender scents that complement the multilayered black fruit. On initial pouring, after a 60 minute decant, it blossoms and evolves greater delineation and poise. The palate is beautifully balanced with silky-smooth tannins that frame the plush, quite heady mixture of red and black fruit. Initially robust, over the ensuing hours it mellows nicely, though it retains the backbone and symmetry you expect from this redoubtable Saint-Julien. An exquisite wine that will age effortlessly over 25–40 years. Drink 2024-2050.
The 2018 Léoville Las-Cases was picked from 15 September and 4 October at 35.5hl/ha and then matured in 90% new oak. This has the lowest pressed wine in history at only two or three percent. This has one of the most floral bouquets that I can recall on a Léoville Las-Cases at this stage with lavender and violet scents combining with the pretty black fruit, gaining intensity all the time in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannins, a more rounded Las-Cases with plenty of plush red and black fruit and a silky finish that caresses the mouth. It is a lovely and comparatively more approachable Las-Cases that is charming from start to finish. It is not quite up there with the ethereal 2016, though it is not too far off. Drink 2024-2050.
“We produced great Cabernet Franc this year,” Directeur Général Pierre Graffeuille told me during my visit to Léoville Las Cases. Even though only 3% of the press wine was added back, he was also absolutely glowing about the quality of this too. And he should be—the finished blend for the 2018 Léoville Las Cases is yet another triumph for this great estate. Composed of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot, harvested September 15 to October 4 with yields of 35.5 hectoliters per hectare, it has 14.49% alcohol and will be aged in barriques, 90% new. Very deep purple-black in color, it is a little closed to begin, slowly emerging from the glass to reveal subtle woodsmoke, violets, tilled soil and underbrush scents over a core of warm cassis, wild blueberries and redcurrant jelly plus hints of rare beef and iron ore. Full-bodied, rich, super concentrated and bursting with latent energy, this is an atomic bomb waiting to go off in your mouth. It has a rock-solid foundation of firm, very ripe, very finely grained tannins and bold freshness supporting the muscular fruit through the epically long, amazingly nuanced finish. Simply breathtaking.
An elegant, complex nose of blackberries, blueberries and herbal and spice notes with dark-chocolate and earthy undertones. Violets, flowers and graphite, too. It’s full-bodied with firm, layered tannins and a crushed-stone undertone throughout the fresh, velvety and layered palate. Very complex, muscular and formed. The finish is endless. Lowest percentage of press wine ever in this. So deep. Try after 2027.
OMG. This shows amazing depth of fruit and density. Full-bodied and so layered with incredible fruit and power. Blackberries. Blueberries. Violets. Hints of dried flowers. Fantastic fruit and tannins, yet agile and energetic. The château says 2016 plus, plus.
The 2018 Léoville Las Cases is a very sensual wine. Silky and nuanced, the 2018 exudes extraordinary finesse from start to finish. The 2018 is a bit closed in on itself at first, but then again, that is Las Cases. At the same time, the tannins are nowhere as brooding as they once were. Inky dark fruit, crème de cassis, mocha and a whole range of savory Cabernet nuances run through a dense, packed Las Cases that is all class. The 2018 is 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc, 9% Merlot and that spent 21 months in oak, 90% new. One of the recent developments at Las Cases has been a decease in the use of press wine, about 2.7% for the 2018 versus the average of 5-10% and the 15% or so that was the norm in the 1980s. I imagine that, plus the ripeness that is common these days, goes a long way towards explaining the seductive quality of many recent vintages. This is a fabulous effort from proprietor Jean-Hubert Delon and his team. 2028 - 2058
The 2018 Léoville Las Cases is a rich, sumptuous, exotic wine in 2018. Plush fruit and suave, silky tannins give the 2018 a level of textural richness that is unusual for a young Léoville Las Cases. Crème de cassis, lavender, mint and sweet spice all build in this extraordinarily beautiful wine. I can't recall tasting a young Las Cases with this much immediacy and sheer allure. The 2018 Las Cases has a very bright future. It is also one of the unquestioned stars of the vintage. In 2018, the blend is 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot.
80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc, 9% Merlot. 90% new oak, pH 3.65. Barrel sample.
Black core with narrow purple rim. A moment of hush needed here. So dark and so intense but also with incredible beauty in its restraint. Silky even with so many layers of tannin. pH 3.65 – quite a miracle in 2018. So dry but so not drying. The freshness from both the pH and the tannins. So fine, it just slides across the palate even if the tannin level is high. A wine of great power and restraint, and tannic finesse. Opens to a tiny note of wild herbs even though it is perfectly ripe, more aromatic as it opens. (JH) 14.49%
Very deep and opaque in colour. The nose is toasty and spicy, with cloves, nutmeg and cassis. The palate is heady and rich on entry with inky black fruit and monolithic, firm tannins. Full of spice, there are notes of roasted coffee bean, star anise and clove to complement the blackcurrant fruit. This is impressively rich but very dense in tannin at this stage. A long finish promises more to come, but this is another Leoville Las Cases that will require significant cellaring before reaching its peak.
A candidate for the wine of the vintage is the 2018 Léoville Las Cases. My notes on this incredible wine are laced with expletives that I, unfortunately, can’t repeat here. Safe to say, however, it’s one of the greatest young Bordeaux I’ve been lucky enough to taste. Based on a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, and 9% Cabernet Franc, from yields of 35.5 hectoliters per hectare, that will spend 19 months in barrel, it offers a massive bouquet of crème de cassis, lead pencil shavings, crushed violets, tobacco, and a liquid rock-like minerality. Pure magic on the palate as well, with full-bodied richness, building structure, and a seamless, weightless, yet powerful mouthfeel, it has everything you could want from a wine. It has the purity and balance to drink well in 7-8 years (I wouldn’t hold it against you if couldn’t wait that long) and will keep for 50 years or more. For the tech geeks out there, this hit 14.49% alcohol, 3.65 pH, and an IPT of 80.
This is backward and dense, with thickly layered plum, blackberry, fig and blueberry reduction flavors wrapped liberally in warm ganache and melted licorice notes. A long echo of smoldering charcoal emerges at the very end. There's a lot to resolve here as the rich and austere sides are still melding, but the extra amplitude doesn't distort anything; it just all goes to 11.
(80 Cabernet Sauvignon, 11 Cabernet Franc, 9 Merlot) | 90% new oak | 14.49% alc | 80 IPT Las Cases manages, yet again, to make one of the most composed and complete wines of the year. Following on from a sensational nose, a super-complex initial burst of fruit hits the palate and it left me reeling, while I desperately tried to compute what was going on. There is a coolness here which balances the exuberance on the palate and it is magical. In complete contrast to Ducru, this is a Zen-like wine with very fine length and serious definition. On the face of it the blend, the alcohol and oak look very similar to that of Ducru’s but the flavour is the antithesis and I adore the fact that two great estates have made such exquisite but contrasting wines in this vintage. Already very complex, there is every sign that this will turn out to be one of the truly great vintages for Las Cases. I know that this is a relatively forward style of wine for this venerable Château but I would still bet that patience rewards those who wait. There is so much depth and harmony in this wine it would be a shame to drink it before every nook and cranny can be fully explored.