I can honestly say that there was nothing wrong with this wine. It was good. It was at least as good as 100 other bottles that I've had that were the same price less a 0 on the end (i.e. about $20). Maybe a bit better.
But for that price and the hype, it had better be damn good. And it wasn't. It was just good.
Time to Taste 2000 Bordeaux (R&D's): Decanted for three hours and rebottled then poured with dinner roughly three hours later. Dark and somewhat brooding; black fruit with a slight jammy quality with earthy undertones. Somewhat firm tannins with red and black fruit, earth and iron flavors. Good finish. Young and needs a few years yet...drink from 2020+.
Is this really 15 years old? It is developing at a glacial pace, but based on the tasting notes from the mid-2000s, it has already shed some baby fat. It is in a fresh spot, with a lot of bright fruit that sits over some secondary development. A touch of herbal and cedar on the nose, giving way to bright fresh red and blue fruit. There is incredible density here but it is so well balanced and structured that it comes across as very light and delicate. It is remarkable to think about what Bordeaux "can be" which is to say, powerful but balanced. Way too many Bordeaux these days are straight ahead bruisers. This is in a completely different style and to me is not only much more versatile, but it should appeal to a larger audience. Some of the numeric scores are probably a touch high but this style of Bordeaux at this price point has become rare so I can understand the enthusiasm.
Best Bottle Dinner at Restaurant Riz in Frankfurt. We drank this Château Léoville Barton 2000 alongside a Château Gruaud Larose 2000. This Léoville Barton looked younger than the Gruaud Larose and had the less expressive nose of the two, offering dark fruit, cucumber and coffee. On the palate the Léoville showed dark flowers, black currant, cherry, cucumber, coffee, chocolate and tobacco, with medium to medium-plus acidity, smooth, ripe, medium-plus tannin and very good length. The Léoville needed some time to open-up, but then became smooth and balanced. Compared with the Gruaud Larose 2000, this Léoville Barton seemed younger, fruitier, riper and broader, yet more reserved, and promised better aging potential, whereas the Gruaud Larose was more open and accessible and gave more drinking pleasure at current stage of the wines. A very good St. Julien! Start drinking from 2018. 92+ for now.
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(Leoville Barton) The 2000 Leoville Barton was atypically subtle and wound at first. After some serious coaxing, aromas of brick, fireplace, cedar, coffee, cassis and deep roasted nuts all emerged. Its long and robust nose became very classic and full of spine, and it was easily the most concentrated wine so far. ‘Is it Cali?’ Wendy joked, but then she admitted that it only walked the line. The palate was also very concentrated and long, possessing spine and more noticeable alcohol but still tasty. The more wines that I had, the more I thought about 1982. Wendy admired its ‘fantastic length.’ The Barton got sweeter in the glass and definitely had that Napa Valley Grill to it but was still outstanding
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