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Chateau Langoa Barton, Saint Julien

Regular price £87.50
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Producer Information

Chateau Langoa-Barton, 3rd Classified Growth, was the first of the two Bordeaux wine estates bought by Hugh Barton in the 1820s, the other being Leoville-Barton, 2nd Classified Growth.

Hugh Barton was a descendant of an Irish family which settled in Bordeaux in the 18th century and which has a long and distinguished history in the region's wine trade. Both properties are still family-owned and run and together represent the longest tradition of unchanged ownership in the Medoc. Anthony Barton is the current proprietor but is gradually passing the reins to his daughter Lillian. Langoa Barton has 20 hectares of vineyards (Cabernet Sauvignon 71%, Merlot 21% and Cabernet Franc 8%) lie on gravelly-clay soils. Vinification includes 18 months' maturation in oak barriques (50% new). Langoa Barton is vinified and matured in exactly the same way as Leoville-Barton and any difference between them must be put down to variations in the soils and exposure of their respective vineyard blocks.

Both Langoa and Leoville wines are models of typical St Julien restraint and elegance, and Anthony's fair pricing policy, always with an eye to the long term has won him many loyal friends amongst his customers. For years, Langoa Barton was considered slightly lighter and more forward than Leoville. However, in the last decade it has become noticeably deeper in colour and richer and more concentrated on the palate. Langoa Barton is now often the equal of Leoville.

Grapes

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc

Production

The plots that compose the Château Langoa Barton terroir overlook the river. The splendid slopes of quaternary gravel bring the grapes to full maturity and then they undergo a rigorous selection process before being chosen for the Langoa Barton. The plowing is traditional, without weeding or herbicide. The grape varieties are Cabernet Sauvignon 54%, Merlot 35% and Cabernet Franc 11%.

The final blend for this vintage was: 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc

The harvesting is done entirely by hand. After the de-stemming, the berries are carefully sorted, crushed and poured in wooden vats thermo-regulated, according to their plots. The alcoholic fermentation lasts from 7 to 10 days and the extraction is always respectful of the juice by adjusting the number of pumping depending on the cuvées and the vintages. The maceration is about 3 weeks then the juice is drawn in barrels, lot by lot. The wine is then aged between 16 and 18 months in French oak barrels of which 60% are brand new, in a cellar maintained at 15 °. The wines are topped up 3 times a week to avoid any contact between the wine and the air, the racking is traditional using the so-called "à l'esquive" method.

Tasting Notes

This vintage is a picture of generosity, a portrait of sensual delight, of silky serenity. The nose tingles with aromatic herbs: wild thyme and Summer savoury along with a touch of graphite. The palate, with its deep, lingering flavours, is an accumulation of strength. Then the well-tamed tannins finish tenderly, caressed by the velvet touch of the almost imperceptible oak.

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