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Chateau Leoville Poyferre (Futures Pre-Sale) 2017

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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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JS 96
James Suckling
Very tight and energetic finish to this young, new red with currant and blackberry character. Hints of crushed stones. Dense and four-square with a chewy tannin structure and a long finish. Very muscular. Serious encore to the 2016. Same level?
Barrel Sample: 95-96
WS 95
Wine Spectator
Warm, displaying a slightly rounded feel for the vintage, this sports plum, cassis and blackberry compote flavors. A mouthwatering anise edge shows on the polished finish, with a well-buried graphite spine.
Barrel Sample: 92-95
JD 95
Jeb Dunnuck
Château Léoville-Poyferré has been on a roll for over a decade now, and they’ve produced a terrific, fruit-forward, pleasure-bent 2017 that readers should snatch up. A blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, it was harvested between September 20th and October 6th, and is aging in 80% new French oak. Awesome crème de cassis, violets, spice box, and crushed rock-like minerality all emerge from this dense, medium to full-bodied, sexy 2017 that has sweet tannin and an expansive, opulent texture. I love the depth of fruit, and where too many wines in the vintage can be straight and a touch charmless, this beauty dishes out tons of pleasure! Don’t miss it.
Barrel Sample: 93-95
RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Yields in 2017 were 44.34 hectoliters per hectare. The 2017 Léoville Poyferré is very deep purple-black in color with super intense notes of freshly crushed blackcurrants, wild blueberries and Sichuan pepper with hints of lavender, baking spices and wood smoke. The palate is medium-bodied, firm and grainy with restrained, understated fruit and a long, mineral-laced finish.
Barrel Sample: 93-95
V 95
Vinous
The 2017 Léoville-Poyferré boasts serious depth and concentration within the context of the year. Bright and floral, with beautifully layered fruit, the 2017 is at once gracious and powerful. Raspberry jam, chocolate, new leather and spice all flesh out in this decidedly exuberant, fleshy Saint-Julien. Many 2017s are quite open, but Léoville-Poyferré is quite reticent. Some of that may be attributable to high percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon in a blend composed of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Because of the late season rains, only 3 out of the 5 parcels that typically inform the Grand Vin were used. Tasted two times. – Antonio Galloni
Barrel Sample: 92-95
D 95
Decanter
This has lower alcohol than usual, but doesn't sacrifice the mouthfeel. There's a succulent damson and cappuccino expression through the finish here, along with tautly constructed, bouncy tannins that are both expressive and powerful. It's one of the more rich and round wines in St-Juliens, as fits the house style. Extremely accomplished, it's powerful and will clearly age well. It's somewhere between 2014 and 2015 in quality, but not touching the majestic 2016. A success in the vintage, underlining again that St-Julien has had an extremely lucky 2017.
Barrel Sample
TA 94
Tim Atkin
Intense, savoury and meaty oak aromas. Concentrated and deep. Flavour packed and deep black and red fruits. Concentrated and still elegant, with good acidity and rounded tannins. Juicy fruit finish.
Barrel Sample: 92-94
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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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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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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.

Tasting Notes for Bordeaux Blends

Bordeaux Blends are dry, red wines and generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, black cherry plum, graphite, cedar and violet. 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.

Perfect Food Pairings for Bordeaux Blends

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 Secrets for Bordeaux Blends

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.

JOBF422800_2017 Item# 422800

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