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1999 Lanessan, Haut-Médoc

SKU #1052924

When young the wines of Château Lanessan are typically a deep, intense ruby color with an elegant nose and fruity, floral aromas. On the palate the structure is complex and dense, melting away harmoniously to a good, long finish. When they are older the wines take on a terracotta tint, and the nose becomes increasingly complex with the appearance of plum and undergrowth aromas. The flavors are smooth, warm, and perfectly harmonious, ending with silky tannins. This 18-year-old bottle is drinking perfectly now! According to Robert Parker, "This underrated Médoc consistently produces wines of fifth-growth quality."

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Price: $19.99
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By: David Driscoll | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/18/2017 | Send Email
The documented history of Lanessan dates back to 1310 when records show that Dame Paironne la Montagne, the widow of Henry de Lanessan, sold the estate to Sieur de Blaignan. In 1793 it was purchased by Jean Delbos, a Bordeaux négociant, and it has remained in the family ever since. In 1855, Louis Delbos, who was the manager at the time, refused to submit samples for consideration in what is now the most famous classification in wine history – the decree from Emperor Napoleon himself that ranked the great wines of Bordeaux's Médoc into the five-tier growth system we still recognize today. While Delbos then regarded the procedure as "bureaucratic nonsense," Bordeaux author David Peppercorn called his disinterest "a piece of high-handedness that has cost Lanessan dearly." The 1855 Classification remains in place today. It has never been updated, despite a failed attempt to do so in 1960. Personal rankings from established Bordeaux critics are published from time to time, but they don't carry the weight of the original. Therefore, whenever enthusiasts peruse the one official ranking of top Bordeaux estates, Lanessan's name is nowhere to be found. So who is Lanessan, you ask? Why are they so important and why have we sold thousands upon thousands of bottles of their wine over the years? Lanessan is an old world Bordeaux producer that, due to a "high-handed" career decision, was kept out of the most important wine classification in history. A chateau that has always held true to its terroir-driven roots and made wine the old-fashioned way, regardless of who was handing out big points and fancy awards. I was talking to our own Clyde recently, who said to me: "Just think how much the owner’s refusal to submit samples in 1855 has cost the property over 150 plus years. It would have been rated at least a fourth growth - so many St Julien wines are rated 2nd growths. You figure the price would be double at least what it has been over the years!" Instead of fourth-growth status, however, Lanessan continues to fly under-the-radar, alluding the attention of most Bordeaux aficionados despite its quality. Take of sip of this 1999 and find out what the fuss is about. Clyde has had a soft spot for the Lanessan wines since 1996 when he first forged a relationship with the underrated chateau. That friendship has blossomed over time. Because of his support and enthusiasm for the wine, Lanessan has agreed to sell us back vintages like the 1999 directly, without distribution fees driving up the price. When we can buy wines directly from the chateau, not only can we keep the cost down, but we can also guarantee that they've been cellared in optimal conditions. When you're talking Bordeaux of that quality for $19.99, it's time to start talking case quantities.

By: Jacques Moreira | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/8/2017 | Send Email
Perfectly aged and full of life—that is the only way I can describe this wine. Cassis, groseille/grenadine, along with coffee and softer notes of sweet plums. It does show development in its tertiary notes of leather and the very much resolved tannins and acidity. Double duty here—drink it now or hold for five or so years.

By: Clyde Beffa Jr. | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/3/2017 | Send Email
Drinking perfectly now! One of our favorite wines is back in house. For under $20 at this age, it doesn't get much better. Grab some while its still available. One of the sleepers of the vintage

By: Kirk Walker | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/23/2010 | Send Email
This is the bottle of Bordeaux you should take home for dinner tonight! Perfectly aged, medium bodied with soft fruit that is accented with underbrush and tobacco and earth. The tannins are mature and round, the time is right for this bottle.

By: Jason Marwedel | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/19/2010 | Send Email
If you love classic Bordeaux at an affordable price, you need look no farther than Chateau Lannessan! Loads of dark plum on the nose with notes of cacao, tobacco leaf, and cedar. This wine has great texture and a ripe mid palate backed by solid acidity and fine tannins. It will certainly age for another few years, but is great now with an hour of decanting

By: Steve Greer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/11/2010 | Send Email
This could be our best value in the store when you consider overall quality and straight-from-the-winery’s-cellar aging. That’s 10-year-old Bordeaux in great condition for only 20 bucks. On the nose: mushroom and earth, which also comes through on the palate with dried black fruit and tobacco. The finish is flush with cassis followed by more tobacco and earth. If you haven’t had an aged Bordeaux and want to experience it without spending too much coin, treat yourself to this wine.

By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/12/2010 | Send Email
This perfect-for-drinking 11 year old claret will be overlooked by far too many of our customers because of its very low price. Don't be one of those folks! This wine is good enough to be a very recommendable $40 Bordeaux, and is very complete wine. It is quite full bodied without loosing its elegance, and has fantastic, evolved, cassis Cabernet flavor to spare. It also has an intriguing, earthy tobacco note that I found quite appealing. I can't wait to serve it with my next "full English" meal of rare roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, mash potatoes and Brussels sprouts! I will have to remember to buy some extra for the years to come as well, this bottle has more than enough guts to last!
Drink from 2010 to 2019

By: Jeff Garneau | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/10/2010 | Send Email
I have long been a fan of this over performing Haut-Médoc estate. Château Lanessan has as storied a history as many classified growths. The current owners, the Delbos-Bouteiller family, can date their ownership of the property back to 1793, and the property itself to 1310. The wines were not included in the Classification of 1855 since the owner at the time, Louis Delbos, neglected to send in samples to the committee. However, it was considered to be the equal of many fifth growths. The property lies just to the south of Château Beychevelle in the commune of Cussac-Fort-Médoc, and has a very St. Julien-like character. This 1999 vintage is surprisingly ripe with firm tannins and impressive dark fruit. With some time in a decanter notes of black currants and cedar emerge on the nose. In the mouth, the fruit is rich and concentrated - blackberry compote and damson plum. 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot. For Bordeaux lovers this wine represents a tremendous value at less than $20. Drink now or enjoy over the next 3 to 5 years.

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