1990 Fieuzal, Pessac-Léognan

SKU #950323 91 points Wine Spectator

 Gorgeous. Wonderfully deep aromas of minerals, violets, berries and cherries. Full-bodied and very concentrated, with subtle yet rich berry and boysenberry flavors and silky tannins. --1990 Bordeaux retrospective.  (8/2000)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 This wine has improved immensely in the bottle, making my earlier notes look particularly stingy. The color is a healthy dark ruby/purple. Aromatically, the wine has opened considerably, revealing plenty of cranberry, black cherry, and cassis fruit. There are also notes of lavish new oak, earth, and cedar in the moderately intense bouquet. The wine is medium-bodied, with sweet fruit, gobs of glycerin (a hallmark of many 1990s), and soft tannin. It has fleshed out considerably, with the tannin becoming better integrated. It is still a youthful, promising wine. (RP)  (1/1998)

K&L Notes

The Pessac-Léognan appellation was created in the 1980s when the growers of northern Graves successfully argued to split Graves in two. The soil structure, sandstone-based gravel, is similar to Médoc, giving the wines an earthy quality. In a 2004 article for Decanter magazine, Clive Coates declared the 1990 de Fieuzal to be one of the better wines produced in the appellation that year.

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Price: $69.99

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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.


- 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.


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Specific Appellation:


- Graves is the large red and white wine region located to the southeast of the city of Bordeaux along the Garonne River. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates the red wines from the area, while the whites are mixtures of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. The most important area within the Graves is the village of Pessac-Leognan. Most of the great chateaux, including Haut Brion, a premier cru and the only wine outside of the Medoc to be included in the 1855 Classification, are located in this small appellation. Graves derives its name from the rocky, stony terrain of the region. Many people believe that the stony soil radiates the day's heat at night and thus makes the grapes ripen earlier than the other regions in Bordeaux.