1986 Ducru-Beaucaillou, St-Julien

SKU #950537 95 points Wine Spectator

 A monster in its infancy. Almost black in color, with intense cassis, herb and mint aromas and superrich, dense cassis and licorice flavors. May last forever. (TM)  (10/1992)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 At 16 years of age, this wine continues to taste more like a 5 to 7-year-old Bordeaux. The color is a handsome dark ruby with just a bit of pink at the edge. The wine exhibits sweet red and black currant fruit intermixed with wet stones, spice, and flowers. Medium-bodied and still moderately tannic, but very concentrated, this firmly structured, slightly austere wine has tremendous upside to it. By the way, this was the first vintage where I began to notice on some bottles the wet cement/damp cardboard aromas that were far more increasingly evident in the subsequent vintages, 1987, 1988, 1989, and 1990. Interestingly, the last five times I have tasted the 1986 Ducru-Beaucaillou, they were totally pristine bottles. Anticipated maturity: 2006-2030. Last tasted, 5/02. (90+)  (1/2003)

K&L Notes

90 points Neal Martin: "This was a good bottle that is ageing well. The nose displays fine intensity with dark plum, blackberry, graphite and just that touch of oyster shell with well-integrated oak. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannins, missing the delineation of a top-flight Ducru but jam-packed with ripe black fruits towards the long finish. It just misses the precision of today’s wines, but is still a delicious Saint Julien. Tasted November 2011."

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Price: $219.99

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By: Clyde Beffa Jr. | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/29/2015 | Send Email
A huge wine dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon. Tons of red fruit flavors and cassis aromas. Quite tannic, but decant two hours and enjoy with a steak dinner.
Drink from 2015 to 2035

Additional Information:


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.


- 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.


- 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.