2004 Gruaud-Larose, St-Julien

SKU #1030624 91 points Wine & Spirits

 This has the plump richness typical of Gruaud, its potent extract fragrant with blueberry and tobacco in a standoff between the green and the black. The tannins are hidden behind all that fruit, not at all obvious, softened to chocolate scents. This should be at its best around ten years from the vintage.  (10/2007)

89 points Wine Enthusiast

 A solid, firm wine; young and closed up. It has an awkward sharpness to its fruit, maybe a stage in its evolution. It seems to be more focused with its dry tannins, layering these right over the fruit.  (6/2007)

89 points Wine Spectator

 Plummy aromas, with leaf and tobacco undertones. Medium-bodied, with soft, silky tannins and a medium finish. Balanced and delightful already, yet needs a little more concentration to be outstanding. Best after 2010.  (3/2007)

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Ruby-red. Expressive nose offers game, spice, tobacco, leather, underbrush, iron and exotic flowers. Supple and fine-grained, with currant and baked plum flavors complicated by chocolate and leather. A wine of moderate intensity and power for this property but rather suave. The cooler vintage character comes through on the finish, which features notes of raw currant and pepper and slightly dusty tannins.  (6/2007)

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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the M├ędoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

- View our bestselling Bordeaux.
Specific Appellation:

Saint Julien

- St. Julien, the smallest of the four famous appellations of the Haut Medoc, is known for highly extracted, finely structured, Cabernet-based reds. It is nestled between Pauillac to the north and Margaux to the south. Like St. Estephe, there are no first growths in this area. Leoville-las-Cases, Leoville Poyferre, Leoville Barton, Ducru Beaucaillou, and Gruard Larose are the second-growths of St. Julien followed by Lagrange which is the only third-growth. Beychevelle, Branaire Ducru, St. Pierre, and Talbot, which are all fourth-growth wines, round out the grand cru classe chateaux. In the last several vintages, wineries from this appellation have been out-performing their traditional rankings making many of the wines from this region some of the best values in red wine today.