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2018 Léoville-Las Cases, St-Julien (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1407985 100 points Jeb Dunnuck

Outer quote mark Pure magic and one of the finest expressions of this estate I could imagine, as well as a perfect wine, the 2018 Château Léoville Las Cases comes from a mix of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, and 9% Cabernet Franc that spent 19 months in (I believe) all new French oak. Its dense purple color is followed by a profound wine loaded with notions of crème de cassis, lead pencil shavings, melon, crushed stone, tobacco, and violets. Full-bodied, concentrated, and massive on the palate, yet also incredibly well delineated and precise, it has a wonderful mix of seemingly ripe, sunny fruit from a warm year yet the minerality, purity, and precision of a cooler year. This wine is going to be just about immortal; however, do your best to hide bottles for a solid 10-15 years. Inner quote mark (3/2021)

99 points Decanter

Outer quote mark This has such a textured, ripe, plump and poised black fruit character that is clear from the aromatics alone. Mouthfilling with huge texture and density, full of licorice root, black chocolate shavings and cocoa pod with crème de cassis edging. This is delicious and has chewy tannins that you can pick up with a shovel. One of the 'wines of the vintage'. Only 2% of press wine (unusually low, as it can go up to 15% in some years). It grips on tight to the finish - extremely impressive. 90% new oak. 80IPT. 3.65pH. A yield of 35.5hl/ha. (JA) Inner quote mark (3/2021)

99 points James Suckling

Outer quote mark An elegant, complex nose of blackberries, blueberries and herbal and spice notes with dark-chocolate and earthy undertones. Violets, flowers and graphite, too. It’s full-bodied with firm, layered tannins and a crushed-stone undertone throughout the fresh, velvety and layered palate. Very complex, muscular and formed. The finish is endless. Lowest percentage of press wine ever in this. So deep. Try after 2027. Inner quote mark (3/2021)

99 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark The 2018 Léoville Las Cases is composed of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot, harvested September 15 to October 4 with yields of 35.5 hectoliters per hectare, it has 14.49% alcohol and was aged in 90% new barriques. Deep purple-black colored, it needs a fair bit of coaxing to reveal striking scents of blackcurrant pastilles, wild blueberries and redcurrant jelly, giving way to notions of crushed rocks, lavender, Indian spices, unsmoked cigars and black truffles, plus a provocative waft of rose oil. The full-bodied palate is densely laden with black fruit preserves and earthy layers, accented by bright, lively red berry and floral sparks. It has a rock-solid frame of firm, ripe, grainy tannins and bold freshness, finishing very long and wonderfully minerally. The tannins are so beautifully approachable even at this youthful stage, making it delicious to drink now, but afford it 5-6 years in bottle to allow those finer nuances to emerge and drink it over the next 40+ years. (LPB) Inner quote mark (3/2021)

96-98 points Wine Enthusiast

Outer quote mark It is the tannins that mark out this powerful wine, presenting a fine balancing act between a firm structure and rich dark fruit flavors. It is the epitome of elegant Saint-Julien, with a welcome mix of weight and freshness. (RV) Inner quote mark (4/2019)

97 points Vinous

Outer quote mark The 2018 Léoville Las Cases is a very sensual wine. Silky and nuanced, the 2018 exudes extraordinary finesse from start to finish. The 2018 is a bit closed in on itself at first, but then again, that is Las Cases. At the same time, the tannins are nowhere as brooding as they once were. Inky dark fruit, crème de cassis, mocha and a whole range of savory Cabernet nuances run through a dense, packed Las Cases that is all class. The 2018 is 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc, 9% Merlot and that spent 21 months in oak, 90% new. One of the recent developments at Las Cases has been a decease in the use of press wine, about 2.7% for the 2018 versus the average of 5-10% and the 15% or so that was the norm in the 1980s. I imagine that, plus the ripeness that is common these days, goes a long way towards explaining the seductive quality of many recent vintages. This is a fabulous effort from proprietor Jean-Hubert Delon and his team. (AG) Inner quote mark (3/2021)

97 points Wine Spectator

Outer quote mark Reserved, even reticent, at first, but like a cold fireplace brought back to life it slowly reveals beautifully handcrafted notes of cassis, plum reduction and blackberry puree along with hints of charcoal, warm cast iron and sweet bay leaf. A violet note chimes on the seriously long finish, adding a tantalizing treble note. A precise, regal, terroir-driven wine. (JM) Inner quote mark (3/2021)

Jancis Robinson

Outer quote mark Black core with narrow purple rim. A moment of hush needed here. So dark and so intense but also with incredible beauty in its restraint. Silky even with so many layers of tannin. pH 3.65 – quite a miracle in 2018. So dry but so not drying. The freshness from both the pH and the tannins. So fine, it just slides across the palate even if the tannin level is high. A wine of great power and restraint, and tannic finesse. Opens to a tiny note of wild herbs even though it is perfectly ripe, more aromatic as it opens. 18.5/20 points (JH) Inner quote mark (4/2019)

K&L Notes

96 points Neal Martin in Vinous: "The 2018 Léoville–Las Cases, which was picked at 35.5hl/ha and matured in 90% new oak, still shows the exuberant floral bouquet that I remarked upon from barrel, featuring violets and (less so) lavender scents that complement the multilayered black fruit. On initial pouring, after a 60 minute decant, it blossoms and evolves greater delineation and poise. The palate is beautifully balanced with silky-smooth tannins that frame the plush, quite heady mixture of red and black fruit. Initially robust, over the ensuing hours it mellows nicely, though it retains the backbone and symmetry you expect from this redoubtable Saint-Julien. An exquisite wine that will age effortlessly over 25–40 years." (3/2021)


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Price: $299.99

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Product Reviews:

By: Trey Beffa | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/3/2019 | Send Email
Very structured and firm, the tannins are balanced with layers of red and black fruits that nearly melt into your mouth. Big and dense, the 2018 Las Cases is a serious wine. One for the cellar! A blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot and 9% Cabernet Franc.

By: Clyde Beffa Jr. | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/2/2019 | Send Email
Glass Full Glass Full Glass Full Glass Full Glass Full
This wine received the highest combined rating of all the wine raters ( except for latour and Lafleur). It is truly amazing. Blueberry and boysenberry aromas-so ripe and round. Seamless wine-elegant yet powerful. Like their 2009 with a bit more tannin. Better than most of the first growths.
Drink from 2025 to 2045

By: Ralph Sands | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/3/2019 | Send Email
Pure, powerful red fruits of deep raspberry and cassis, perfect extraction, no hints of over ripeness, and a touch of sweet middle flesh. Very strong wine with sparking acidity and freshness, this wine will live a very long life! 2 Stars Ralph Sands

By: Ryan Moses | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/16/2019 | Send Email
A textbook LLC built on structure and depth, the 2018 is a brooding wine that might challenge many folks' patience, but reward them generously at the end of the day. Dark black and purple fruits surround a textured palate that adds a savory note through a persistent finish lined with fine-grained tannins. There is depth and density to spare.

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