2012 Lynch-Bages, Pauillac (1.5L) (Pre-Arrival)
Barrel sample. The wine is very dry, layered tannins giving a major sense of structure. It will always have this dry, dense character, very firm, solid and powerful.
Aromas of blackcurrants, blueberries and lemons follow through to a full body, firm tannins and a fresh, clean finish. A little tight now but excellent. Precision to this. Back ended. Better in 2018.
This has a very solid core of dark plum, crushed black currant and blackberry fruit, with lightly firm flesh and good drive through the finish, where alder and iron notes fill in. Shows excellent energy and depth, while harnessing the austere edge of the vintage. Best from 2018 through 2025.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Deep purple. Floral blackcurrant and mineral aromas on the delicate, pure nose. Then equally delicate in the mouth, offering flavors of dark berries, graphite and cedar. Finishes clean and long, with above-average concentration for the vintage. Jean-Charles Cazes explained that the harvest reception system was changed this year, with two extra reception lines added to destem/sort and then sort again. The result was a very clean crop.
Dark and spicy. Compact, chewy tannins but there's fine dark fruit to complete the whole. Perhaps slightly on the austere side but balanced in that style. (JH)
A big mash of Cabernet fruit and structure--exactly what I expected of it. Classic claret! (Ralph Sands, K&L Bordeaux expert)