2012 Reserve de Léoville-Barton, St-Julien

SKU #1277306 90 points James Suckling

 Tight and flavorful with blueberries, currants and fresh earth character plus just a hint of minerals. Medium to full body, fine tannins and a fresh finish. Drink or hold.  (2/2015)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Tasted blind at the Southwold Bordeaux tasting. The 2012 Réserve de Léoville-Barton has a fruit-driven, open, pure raspberry and crushed strawberry scented bouquet that is simple but designed to seduce. "Punter friendly," as they say. The palate is medium-bodied with a sweet entry, fleshy in the mouth, soft tannin with a smudged, easy-drinking finish. (NM)  (10/2016)

Wine Spectator

 A bright, floral-edged version, with a violet note weaving around the open-knit cherry and pomegranate flavors. Modest fruit on the finish gives way to an austere savory edge. (JM, Web-2015)

K&L Notes

This is the second wine of famed Second Growth Léoville-Barton. On a par with Pagodes and Reserve de la Comtesse de Lalande, this is classic St Julien in character, and a great value while you wait for the first wines to come around.

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Price: $34.99
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Staff Image By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/23/2017 | Send Email
This is yet another 2012 that is drinking beautifully now. The red fruits of the vintage seem to dominate over the more typical dark fruits of Leoville Barton's first wine. With sweet earthy and spicy notes on the nose as well, this is a delicous example of the vintage and of the inherent value in picking a well made second wine from a prestigious property such as Leoville Barton (always one of our favorites).

Staff Image By: Steve Bearden | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/20/2017 | Send Email
The second wine of Leoville Barton is floral and fresh with the same sweet red and dark fruit as the first wine but none of the tannic scale. This has lots of Leoville character in an approachable style and price.

Staff Image By: Clyde Beffa Jr. | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/15/2016 | Send Email
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70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 7% Cab Franc, 3% Pet Verdot. This classic Claret, from the lovely underrated vintage of 2012 provides every bit as much complexity and nuance as both the classed growths Léoville and Langoa Barton. This second wine of Leoville is elegant and polished, displaying red and black fruits and integrated tannins. We found it to be quite approachable and softer than some of the older vintages of this wine. Terrific texture and mouthfeel. Cellar it for a few more years or double decant it and drink now with a rack of lamb.
Drink from 2016 to 2026

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.