This morning Leoville Barton 2017 has released, a perennial favourite and leading Second growth wine from St.Julien. In 2017 it is considered to be on par with their 2016 effort, receiving 93-95 points from Neal Martin, equalling his 2016 score, whereon he says ‘Seriously, this is nudging (not equalling, nudging!) the 2016 in terms of quality and there are just a handful of properties where I can state that this year.’ Antonio Galloni has given it one of his highest grades with 93-96 points, equalling his 2016 score and saying ‘One of the few truly exceptional Left Bank wines of the vintage, the 2017 Léoville-Barton is simply fabulous.’ Lisa Perrotti-Brown seems to have underscored this by a point, awarding it 91-93+, however the addition of the plus suggests the higher end of the bracket or above will be achieved. Leoville Barton 2017 is a very fine wine, a gorgeous representation of this iconic and beloved Estate.
The price today is £654 per case of 12 or £327 per case of six, offering an attractive entry price for a leading Second Growth. Today’s release price therefore reflects a 12.1% reduction on the release price of the 2016. The 2017 is comparable also to the 2009 in terms of quality, which received 93+ from bottle, to which this offers a 12.9% discount. The quality of the wine and the discount to the 2009 and 2016 make this attractive, as does its relative price when compared to the other leading Second Growths. The only thing stopping this from being a must buy is that the 2014, which scored 94 points trades today at £550, however, the 2005 which scored 92 trades at £950, a premium of 45%. There is plenty to love about Leoville Barton, a wine close to our hearts and it is selling well. It is a good buy and a wine to own.
Leoville Barton represents the archetype of great Bordeaux, each vintage is built to last, an idiom for truly great, age-worthy Bordeaux. However, the price of Leoville Barton has always remained very appealing and Bordeaux lovers will appreciate today’s release price and stock up on this magnificent and venerable Chateau for the decades ahead. To put its price into perspective, Leoville Barton 2015 costs just over half the price of Sassicaia and Ornellaia on release, less than half the price of Pichon Baron and Pichon Lalande, we can expect around 115% discount to the expected release price of Leoville Las Cases. We believe strongly in the value for money in Leoville Barton 2017.
Chateau Leoville was at the time of the French Revolution the largest Estate in the Medoc, however, it was confiscated when the Marquis de Las Cases fled the Revolution. Today it occupies a quarter of the original Estate. In 1826 Hugh Barton, of successful negociant business Barton & Guestier, bought a share in the Estate with the purpose of returning it to its original owner. The Marquis de Las Cases, unfortunately, was unable to reimburse Barton for the land and so he remained the owner. Interestingly five years before, Hugh Barton had also acquired the neighbouring property of Langoa and as there was no chai on the Leoville land he was forced to vinify both the wines of Leoville and Langoa at the chai on the Langoa Estate. This practice continues to this day.
Leoville Barton has been owned by one family for almost two centuries. Since 1986 the Estate has embraced new wine making techniques and the efforts have been reflected in the wines to date. Leoville Barton is situated in the centre of St Julien and has gravely soil with a subsoil of clay. The wine is Cabernet Sauvignon dominate and has flavours of dark fruit and a nose of cedar which is typical of a wine from St Julien. Especially in recent years, Leoville Barton has a reputation of producing wonderful wines at reasonable prices and coupled with the wit and charm of Anthony Barton this is a favourite of consumers and journalists alike.
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