2012 Larcis Ducasse, St-Emilion (Pre-Arrival)
This shows so much class and balance with blackberry and mushroom character. Some wet earth. It makes you want to drink it! Fine and ripe tannins. Gorgeous. Drink in 2018.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
This great terroir, long owned by the Gratiot family, has come to life under the inspired winemaking of Nicolas Thienpont and Stéphane Derenoncourt. Some recent vintages have been legendary efforts, especially 2005, 2008, 2009 and 2010. The 2012 (83% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc) is right in the competition, with an inky, opaque, bluish/purple color, gorgeously sweet, rich nose of black raspberries, black cherries and currants, and licorice. The wine hits the palate with a full-bodied, thunderous effect. This blend tips the scales at 14.5% alcohol, which is indicative of its fabulously exposed vineyard on a full, steep limestone slope with a primarily southern exposure. This is full-bodied, ripe and one of the great stars of the vintage – again. The wine has full-bodied texture, gorgeous purity, richness and length. Drink it over the next 20 years.
Barrel sample. Newly promoted to Premier Grand Cru Classé in 2012, this is a fine, concentrated wine, showing great style. It has weight and a delicious juiciness that is sustained by firm, dry tannins. Already a beautiful wine.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(83% merlot and 17% cabernet franc; 28 h/h production): Purple-ruby. Piquant notes of cinnamon, ink and white pepper perk up the red berry and cherry aromas on the captivating nose. Then sweet, suave and dense on the palate, with noteworthy precision to the red berry, mineral and floral flavors. Finishes silky and long. A marvelous wine by which to celebrate the chateau's upgrade to 1er Grand Cru Classe status.
Dark and winey, with steeped currant, macerated plum and warm boysenberry coulis flavors, laced with licorice snap and roasted apple wood notes. The charcoal edge is buried on the finish, with a lingering minerality. Lots going on here. Needs time. Best from 2017 through 2027.—
Deep dark cherry colour. Fine and dry and so fresh. Feels like a breath of summer. But it is not particularly light - good length - just no excess weight. Drink 2017-2023. 17-/20 points.
"A remarkable effort," to quote Robert Parker, who goes on to add: "yields were kept to 23 hectoliters per hectare by the brilliant team of Nicolas Thienpont, Stephane Derenoncourt, David Suire and Julien Lavenu. The final blend of 83% Merlot and 17% Cabernet Franc has produced a powerhouse with 14.5% natural alcohol. This team's goal is undoubtedly to elevate Larcis Ducasse to the status of Ausone, Cheval Blanc, Pavie and Angelus. They are well on their way." (04/2013)