2005 Léoville Las Cases, St-Julien

SKU #1040950 100 points Wine Spectator

 (Collectibles) This is breathtaking. Black in color, with incredible aromas of crushed blackberry, mineral, licorice and lead pencil. Full-bodied, with a mind-blowing texture of seamless tannins that coat every millimeter of the palate. Goes on and on, with licorice, currant and flowers.  (3/ 2008)

99 points James Suckling

 A stunningly complex and complete nose of flowers, dark fruits, and minerals. Very perfumed and subtle at the same time. The palate is full, yet tight and powerful with perfect tannins and a long, long finish. The quality of the tannins is phenomenal, please leave this alone for ten years.  (5/ 2012)

98 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Another titanic effort from the Delon family, the 2005 Leoville Las Cases is probably the greatest wine made at this estate since Jean-Hubert Delon’s father produced the 1986 and 1996. Only 37% of the production made it into the 2005, a blend of primarily Cabernet Sauvignon with less than 13% Merlot and Cabernet Franc. An inky/ruby/purple color is accompanied by reticent aromatics that, with considerable coaxing, offer up subtle notes of toasty vanillin intermixed with lead pencil shavings, wet rocks, and enormously ripe, intense black cherry and creme de cassis. The wine hits the palate with a full-bodied, layered mouthfeel as well as enormous extract, concentration, and purity. This ageless, monumental claret requires a minimum of 15-20 years to approach maturity, and should last for a half century. It is about as classic a Leoville Las Cases as one will find.  (4/ 2008)

98 points Wine & Spirits

 Here is one more vintage to prove Las Cases deserves to be elevated to first growth. The Delon family has tended this great terroir as if they were already there. And the wine has the assured stance, the persistence of flavor that lasts long enough to become a memory, an imprint on whatever synaptic connection may store and recall the greatest pleasures of taste. The energy in the wine is remarkable: beautiful, lithe juice that carries a flavor close to tiny currants and black cherries, but a flavor all its own. The deep stones of Le Clos and the roses with their view of the Gironde seem to be there in the wine as well. Harmonious and jazzed. Perhaps this is the vintage.  (10/ 2008)

95 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Saturated ruby-red. A confiture of dark berries on the nose, with a complicating torrefaction note of coffee. Fat, sweet, plump and full, with a silky, enveloping texture rare for this wine in its youth. The highly concentrated cassis, violet and bitter chocolate flavors really take over the mouth and stay awhile. The huge, chocolatey finish features big, ripe, building tannins. One can easily taste this massive wine today, but there are great reserves here to ensure a long and slow evolution in bottle-and I would not be at all surprised if it shut down soon for a very long time. Our cabernet sauvignon was perfectly ripe in both '05 and '06, noted cellarmaster Rolland. 95(+?) points  (6/ 2008)

95 points Wine Enthusiast

 While the aromas are tight and firm, once it is in the mouth, this wine just explodes. The tannins are dark, almost impenetrable, dry and dense. These tannins are a layer over the fruit that just piles up with ripe blackberry juice, an edge of blueberry. The soft sweetness of this range of flavors continues on the finish, pitted against the tannins.  (3/ 2009)

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By: Clyde Beffa Jr. |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/28/2013  | Send Email
*** One of the top wines of the vintage with scores all the way to 100 points. Best to cellar this at least five more years.

Additional Information:

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 Médoc 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.