I bought and drank a few bottles of this wine ages ago, in about 2006, so I was really excited to see where it had gone in the last decade. It's certainly better now, less tannic and more aromatic. Upon popping the cork, it had a really nice earthy fruitiness but that faded rather quickly. The nose then became dominated with oak, red fruit, and cigar. Over the hours we drank it, a lot of cedar and rolled tobacco emerged. The palate was mostly fruit, cigar, and cedar, smooth and enjoyable with tannins that faded considerably over 8 hours of drinking. Based on my experience with the wine, it's hard for me to say if it was better 5 years ago than today or will be better in 5 years. Perhaps it is in a good place now.
I enjoyed this wine, but I was hoping for a bit more X-factor. I've had a number of $30 and $40 second wines of famous Chateau (eg. Alter Ego from Palmer and Tourelles de Longueville from Pichon Baron, both from 2001). While this wine wasn't that much more expensive, I feel like it should deliver more as a Grand Cru Classe 3rd Growth than a second wine or a Cru Bourgeois. My experience with this wine made me agree with notes from Neal Martin and Robert Parker that called Lagrange a sturdy, reliable St. Julien but not an inspiring one. I do feel that the 1989 and particularly the 1990 were really a notch up for Lagrange, but the 1986, 1995, 1996, 2000, and 2003 definitely fit the sturdy but not inspiring description. I'll be serving the 1995 and 2003 at my wedding, and I think that they are have QPR because I got lucky and found them for $45 a bottle. I'm not sure the wines are worth the normal $75-$90 price tag.
62 % Cabernet-Sauvignon, 27 % Merlot, 11 % Petit Verdot
Robe : rubis orangée. brillante avec de fines larmes Nez : on est sur la finesse, sur le cassis, le cèdre, le cirage blond En bouche : on est également sur la finesse, les tanins sont fondus. C'est un vin en demi-corps avec une belle acidité qui apporte de la fraîcheur. Le vin présente une belle longueur en bouche. Très bien.
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(Chateau Lagrange St Julien) This is slightly more aromatic than Les Fiefs from the same vintage, although it is predominantly the nutty and mocha aromas of youth. Quite balanced and elegant on the palate, with a gentle structure, showing some depth on the midpalate and finish. Not very expressive at the moment, but has potential. I think this will be drinking well in 2-3 years, perhaps a little longer. Very good.
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