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Chateau Gloria (Futures Pre-Sale) 2018

  • WS96
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  • D93
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 96
Wine Spectator
There's lots here, with raspberry, blackberry, currant and blueberry fruit all playing a role, along with lively briar and licorice snap notes. An apple wood frame keeps the elements in line.
Barrel Sample: 93-96
JS 94
James Suckling
This is a tight and linear red, showing dark berries and blueberries with cedar with flowers. Full-bodied and foursquare. Framed and focused.
Barrel Sample: 93-94
RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2018 Gloria is deep garnet-purple colored and gives up expressive notions of warm red and black currants, black cherries and boysenberries with hints of spice cake, cedar chest, pencil lead and menthol. Full-bodied with a firm texture of ripe, grainy tannins, it has a lively line cutting through the dense, savory layers, finishing on a lingering spicy note. The blend is currently 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Anticipated aging is for 14 months in oak barriques, 40% new.
Barrel Sample: 92-94
JD 94
Jeb Dunnuck

Readers looking for an estate on the uptick need to check out the 2018 Château Gloria, which is up with the finest vintages I’ve tasted from this Saint-Julien estate. Deeply colored with terrific cassis and blackberry fruits as well as ample leafy herbs and sappy flower notes, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, has polished, elegant tannins, and a great finish. It’s a juicy, fruit-forward effort with good concentration and lots of class. Drink it over the coming 25 years or more. The blend is currently 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, and the balance Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, from a selection of 65% of the total production, that’s currently resting in 40% new French oak. Barrel Sample: 92-94.

D 93
Decanter

Gloria is fast becoming one of the most exciting insider wines of the entire Bordeaux region, and that rare species of a non-classified St-Julien. The fruit here is brambly, textured and autumnal, and again the alcohol seems generous but balanced, with plenty of St-Julien finesse. It has a feeling of not needing to go too far to convince anyone. This is some austerity here but there's a bounce to the tannins through the mid-palate, while the alcohol is clearly there but not dominant, helped I would expect by relatively generous yields of 46hl/ha. Very good quality. 5% Cabernet Franc makes up the blend. 50% new oak. Drinking Window 2027 - 2040. Barrel Sample: 93

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Chateau Gloria

Chateau Gloria

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Chateau Gloria, France
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One of the better-known Crus Bourgeois of the Medoc, still at reasonable prices. Chateau Gloria is made up of holdings of classified Crus and would deserve to be classified in its own right. Recent vintages have found all their character again, in the tradition of the great Saint-Julien wines. A surprising wine if you are prepared to wait: after 30 years, the 1970 vintage has just reached optimum maturity.
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St-Julien

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An icon of balance and tradition, St. Julien boasts the highest proportion of classed growths in the Médoc. What it lacks in any first growths, it makes up in the rest: five amazing second growth chateaux, two superb third growths and four well-reputed fourth growths. While the actual class rankings set in 1855 (first, second, and so on the fifth) today do not necessarily indicate a score of quality, the classification system is important to understand in the context of Bordeaux history. Today rivalry among the classed chateaux only serves to elevate the appellation overall.

One of its best historically, the estate of Leoville, was the largest in the Médoc in the 18th century, before it was divided into the three second growths known today as Chateau Léoville-Las-Cases, Léoville-Poyferré and Léoville-Barton. Located in the north section, these are stone’s throw from Chateau Latour in Pauillac and share much in common with that well-esteemed estate.

The relatively homogeneous gravelly and rocky top soil on top of clay-limestone subsoil is broken only by a narrow strip of bank on either side of the “jalle,” or stream, that bisects the zone and flows into the Gironde.

St. Julien wines are for those wanting subtlety, balance and consistency in their Bordeaux. Rewarding and persistent, the best among these Bordeaux Blends are full of blueberry, blackberry, cassis, plum, tobacco and licorice. They are intense and complex and finish with fine, velvety tannins.

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Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

BANF520465_2018 Item# 520465