Robert Parker 93
The 1996 Leoville Barton appears more youthful than the 1996 Langoa Barton in the glass with a healthy deep garnet core. The aromatics unfurl gracefully in the glass revealing briary, wild hedgerow, black truffle and sandalwood scents — firmly in secondary aroma stage but with appreciable presence and intensity. The palate is medium-bodied with grippy tannin that form its firm and classic structure, spice, white pepper and cloves infusing the slightly animally red berry fruit. This is an adorable Léoville Barton that is occupying a very “happy” place at the moment — superb precision, old school claret at its best. Decant for an hour no more, then enjoy. Tasted July 2016.
Anticipated maturity: 2016-2035
Dark crimson. Sweet, evolved, almost elderly nose. Aromatic fruit. Still the vestige of a backbone. A lady of mature years who is a stalwart of the Conservative party? (If this wine were a person…) Slight lack of concentration on the mid palate.
Anticipated maturity: 2005-2026
Full ruby color. Blueberry, roasted nuts, mint and a hint of game on the nose. Fat, sweet and multilayered; rich, ripe and deep. Offers a generous mouthfeel for a young ’96 from the Medoc. Substantial ripe tannins spread out over the palate. Very long, ripe aftertaste.