Chateau Gruaud Larose 2010
Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Julien, Bordeaux, France
James Suckling - "Ripe raspberries and blueberries with hints of fresh flowers. Deep nose of dark fruits. Full body, with silky tannins and a beautifully integrated tannin structure. It's long and very refined. Better than 2009. "
Wine Enthusiast - "For anybody looking for classic Bordeaux, this is the bottle to seek. "Classic" here means a wine with a tannic structure that also relies on a black currant flavor, with acidity providing freshness but not losing any concentration or aging potential. Keep for many years."
Wine Spectator - "This is distinctive, with an aromatic roasted alder wood streak leading the way, quickly followed by dense but sleek blackberry cobbler, currant paste and warm plum sauce notes. Well-polished through the finish, offering deeply embedded acidity. Best from 2015 through 2030."
The Wine Advocate - "Dark garnet/plum/purple, with loads of spice, earth, underbrush, red and black currants, licorice, and even a hint of Provencal garrigue, this full-bodied, tannic, masculine style of St.-Julien needs 5-6 years of cellaring, but is full, beefy, rich and impressively endowed. There are plenty of firm tannins in the background of this blockbuster wine, which has been built for the long haul. This is one 2010 where patience will be required. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2040.
International Wine Cellar - "Bright red-ruby. Blackcurrant, smoke, tobacco and leather on the nose, with hints of game and earth. Round, lush and seamless in the mouth; shows an animal aspect yet comes across as civilized owing to well-judged extraction. Enticing sweetness to the flavors of dark and red berries and wild herbs, lifted by a note of candied flowers. This has the concentration and body to support its serious but sweet tannins. I would not be surprised if this large-scaled wine shut down in bottle in the near future, but it should also be long-lived.
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Chateau Gruaud Larose Winery
Chevalier de Gruard and Chevalier de La Rose owned this 70 hectare estate in Saint-Julien in the mid 18th century. Their two names were first associated on a label in 1781. Due to inheritance problems, the estate was divided in two until 1935, when Désiré Cordier, who had already bought a part in the early 1900s, restored the domain to its original size.
Since the 1980s, Gruard Larose has been held by groups of institutional investors before coming into the hands of the Merlant family in 1997. The vines are in a single block on a rise consisting of deep red gravel. Georges Pauli and his team have been responsible for winegrowing since 1970. Due to their expert care, Gruard Larose's soil is able to express its full potential. The wine is more than ever worthy of its Second Growth status in the 1855 classification. View all Chateau Gruaud Larose Wines
About St-JulienView a map of St-Julien wineries (saint juhl-e-EHN)
The smallest of the top four Haut-Médoc communes, St-Julien is directly south of Pauillac. With no first growths to its name, the commune often goes overlooked. But it has 11 excellent second, third and fourth growths, and the highest proportion of classified growths of the top four. It doesn't have the concentration and powerful punch of a Pauillac or the soft elegance of a Margaux, but the wine of St-Julien combines the best of its northern & southern neighbors.
Notable FactsA good descriptor of St-Julien wines is balance. Cabernet Sauvignon-based like all left bankers, St-Julien also adds a bit of Merlot for softness. The best known chateaux are the Léovilles – Léoville-Barton, Léoville-Las Cases, Léoville Poyferre - although Barton and Las Cases are more common and more recognizable to consumers. All three are second growths and top notch for their class. The other well known chateaux are Chateau Gruaud-Larosse & Lagrange, a second growth and fourth growth, known for reliable quality.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.