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Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2016

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750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Blend: 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
D 98
Decanter
Relatively closed right now, as are all the St-Juliens, this takes time to open in the glass but does so to reveal lots of northern Médoc character in the liquorice and brambly fruit puree, with touches of caramel and sweet cassis. It's hewn out of slate boulders with layers of tannin - a lovely construction that's deepened even further during ageing. 2% Cabernet Franc finishes the blend. Matured in 80% new oak. Michel Rolland consults.
JD 98
Jeb Dunnuck
Tasted on four separate occasions where this wine rated 97+, 98, 98, and 99, the 2016 Château Léoville-Poyferré is a brilliant bottle of wine and is certainly in the same league as the 2000, 2003, 2009, and 2010. Made from 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, and the balance Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, aged in 80% new oak, this brilliantly concentrated, full-bodied, opulent beast of a wine offers a heavenly bouquet of crème de cassis, blackcurrants, smoked earth, tobacco leaf, and ample crushed rocks. It’s certainly one of the most flamboyant and opulent wines in the vintage, yet it remains perfectly balanced, with masses of polished tannins, no hard edges, and a fabulous finish. It will be drinkable in 3-4 years yet keep for 3-4 decades.
JS 97
James Suckling
Wow. The power and depth to this wine is super with a full and fleshy palate, yet so tight and integrated with panache and energy. Chewy tannins yet seamless and melted in the wine. Extremely long and beautiful. This needs at least five to six years to resolve the steely tannins that run through this wine. Take a look from 2024. A blend of 61 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 27 per cent merlot, eight per cent merlot and four per cent cabernet franc.
WS 97
Wine Spectator
Richly layered, with a core of well-steeped plum, blackberry and black currant fruit flavors cruising through, flanked by ganache, sweet tobacco and warm tar notes. There's a plush, toasty coating but the wine's energy and nearly unbridled fruit will easily soak that up. A last echo of violet is further evidence of a lovely evolution ahead. Best from 2025 through 2040.
RP 97
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Léoville Poyferré hits the ground running with intense cassis, violets, dark chocolate, menthol and fragrant earth notions complemented by nuances of cigar box and smoked meats. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is charged with energetic, super intense black fruit and floral layers, beautifully supported with super firm, ripe, grainy tannins and seamless freshness. This liquid is simply alive in the mouth, culminating in an epically long finish that will leave your mouth practically tingling. WOW!
Rating: 97+
WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
Ripe, bold fruits mark out this opulent wine. Its rich tannins are typical of the estate and of the vintage. Serious concentration is balanced with good acidity to give a generous wine that also has the structure for aging. Drink from 2025.
Cellar Selection
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Chateau Leoville Poyferre

Chateau Leoville Poyferre

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Chateau Leoville Poyferre, France
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Due to a division of the large Léoville estate, Chateau Léoville Poyferré was created in 1840 and included as a Second Growth in the famous 1855 Classification. In 1920, the Cuvelier family purchased the estate and Didier Cuvelier has been in charge since 1979.

Major investments were made to bring out the best in the vineyards, and the cellars were also renovated. In 1994, noted consulting oenologist Michel Rolland began to offer his precious winemaking advice. The final blend is made after many careful tastings. Chateau Léoville Poyferré is aged in oak barrels, 75% of which are new every year. It is an extremely well-balanced wine with a great deal of finesse and excellent aging potential.

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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.

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