2005 Léoville Las Cases, St-Julien (Elsewhere $400)
(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.
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.
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.
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.
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