1994 Gruaud-Larose, St-Julien

SKU #1014555 Decanter

 Light, jammy fruit nose. Attractive fruit on the palate, with good, round tannins - an elegant wine.  (12/1998)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 It has been a few years since I last tasted this vintage of Gruaud.... The nose is light but nicely defined with faded dark plum, undergrowth and cigar box scents. The palate is well balanced with a leafy green edge one might expect for the vintage....and yet you cannot help feeling that a bottle served on the dining table would be polished off without complaint. Approach it for what it is and you will not be disappointed. Drink now. Tasted February 2013. (Neil Martin's Wine Journal)  (3/2013)

K&L Notes

A medium-bodied but firm expression of Gruaud-Larose, a rare Bordeaux known for including all the region's varietals. 1994 was a warm, sunny vintage bedeviled by rain during harvest. Consequently, many of the wines from the Médoc are dilute, or suffer from green or astringent tannins. The ’94 Gruaud Larose is an exception, displaying unexpected ripeness and weight. There is much to savor here: sweet black fruits and a hint of that cigar box character that I typically associate with Gruaud Larose. A strong effort for the vintage. Classified as a second growth in 1855, this is an often underrated property that seems to epitomize all that is good about St-Julien. (Jeff Garneau, K&L, 5/2016)

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Price: $69.99
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Staff Image By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/4/2014 | Send Email
Cinnamon and I enjoyed this claret last night with a ribeye steak and potatoes. Cinnamon decided to be avant-garde on this occasion, and instead of peas or green beans served pan seared padron peppers. We put a touch of truffle salt on the steaks after cooking them, and the meal turned out very nicely. How did the Gruaud work? It was predictably great with the food. This 1994 has the poise and power of a great vintage at 20 years old, and seems to just be hitting its stride. It has a huge amount of pure, dark cassis fruit, integrated but very present tannins, and lots of electricity on the long, mineral laden finish. It took discipline for me not to hog the bottle, but it was too good not to share fairly with Cinnamon!
Drink from 2014 to 2034

Staff Image By: Jeff Garneau | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/31/2012 | Send Email
A good vintage that was spoiled somewhat by rain at harvest, the wines are a little lighter in body than they might have been otherwise but in all other respects are quite good. This 1994 Gruaud Larose offers a savory nose of leather and tobacco, tangy red currant notes and an enticing hint of mint. The perfect claret to accompany a nice beef roast or a Friday night ribeye.

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.


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.