2018 Léoville-Las Cases, St-Julien 6-pack in OWC (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1420371 99-100 points James Suckling

 OMG. This shows amazing depth of fruit and density. Full-bodied and so layered with incredible fruit and power. Blackberries. Blueberries. Violets. Hints of dried flowers. Fantastic fruit and tannins, yet agile and energetic. The château says 2016 plus, plus.  (4/2019)

98-100 points Jeb Dunnuck

 A candidate for the wine of the vintage is the 2018 Léoville Las Cases. My notes on this incredible wine are laced with expletives that I, unfortunately, can’t repeat here. Safe to say, however, it’s one of the greatest young Bordeaux I’ve been lucky enough to taste. Based on a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, and 9% Cabernet Franc, from yields of 35.5 hectoliters per hectare, that will spend 19 months in barrel, it offers a massive bouquet of crème de cassis, lead pencil shavings, crushed violets, tobacco, and a liquid rock-like minerality. Pure magic on the palate as well, with full-bodied richness, building structure, and a seamless, weightless, yet powerful mouthfeel, it has everything you could want from a wine. It has the purity and balance to drink well in 7-8 years (I wouldn’t hold it against you if couldn’t wait that long) and will keep for 50 years or more. For the tech geeks out there, this hit 14.49% alcohol, 3.65 pH, and an IPT of 80.  (5/2019)

98-100 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 'We produced great Cabernet Franc this year,' Directeur Général Pierre Graffeuille told me during my visit to Léoville Las Cases. Even though only 3% of the press wine was added back, he was also absolutely glowing about the quality of this too. And he should be--the finished blend for the 2018 Léoville Las Cases is yet another triumph for this great estate. Composed of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot, harvested September 15 to October 4 with yields of 35.5 hectoliters per hectare, it has 14.49% alcohol and will be aged in barriques, 90% new. Very deep purple-black in color, it is a little closed to begin, slowly emerging from the glass to reveal subtle woodsmoke, violets, tilled soil and underbrush scents over a core of warm cassis, wild blueberries and redcurrant jelly plus hints of rare beef and iron ore. Full-bodied, rich, super concentrated and bursting with latent energy, this is an atomic bomb waiting to go off in your mouth. It has a rock-solid foundation of firm, very ripe, very finely grained tannins and bold freshness supporting the muscular fruit through the epically long, amazingly nuanced finish. Simply breathtaking. (LPB)  (4/2019)

97-100 points Wine Spectator

 This is backward and dense, with thickly layered plum, blackberry, fig and blueberry reduction flavors wrapped liberally in warm ganache and melted licorice notes. A long echo of smoldering charcoal emerges at the very end. There's a lot to resolve here as the rich and austere sides are still melding, but the extra amplitude doesn't distort anything; it just all goes to 11. (JM)  (3/2019)

98 points Decanter

 2018 is another vintage where it's pretty much impossible to find fault with Las Cases, and where you get a kick of happiness from tasting it. Owner Jean-Hubert Delon compares the 2016 to the 1961 and the 2018 to the 1959 - let's all check back in a few decades to see if that's true! But where the 2016 was monumental, this has a subtlety that's rarely seen in such a young LLC. It's not that you'd call this approachable but you rarely see this level of plush density to the fruit at this stage. There's a civilised quality to the structure that makes you think, just maybe, the 2018 will be at optimum drinking before the 2016. You're still getting the complex cigar box and cassis aromatics, with deep, rippling black fruits on the palate accompanied by a cassis and liquorice whoosh and the layering up of dense but fine tannins. It demonstrates precise balance and an exceptionally long finish. All in all, this is a standout St-Julien. This year sees the lowest percentage of press wine ever used at this estate, coming in at under 3% (it's normally double this), because the wine already had so much structure that the normal level of press wine threw it out of balance. (JA)  (4/2019)

96-98 points Wine Enthusiast

 It is the tannins that mark out this powerful wine, presenting a fine balancing act between a firm structure and rich dark fruit flavors. It is the epitome of elegant Saint-Julien, with a welcome mix of weight and freshness. (RV)  (4/2019)

95-98 points Vinous

 The 2018 Léoville Las Cases is a rich, sumptuous, exotic wine in 2018. Plush fruit and suave, silky tannins give the 2018 a level of textural richness that is unusual for a young Léoville Las Cases. Crème de cassis, lavender, mint and sweet spice all build in this extraordinarily beautiful wine. I can't recall tasting a young Las Cases with this much immediacy and sheer allure. The 2018 Las Cases has a very bright future. It is also one of the unquestioned stars of the vintage. In 2018, the blend is 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot. (AG)  (4/2019)

Jancis Robinson

 Black core with narrow purple rim. A moment of hush needed here. So dark and so intense but also with incredible beauty in its restraint. Silky even with so many layers of tannin. pH 3.65 – quite a miracle in 2018. So dry but so not drying. The freshness from both the pH and the tannins. So fine, it just slides across the palate even if the tannin level is high. A wine of great power and restraint, and tannic finesse. Opens to a tiny note of wild herbs even though it is perfectly ripe, more aromatic as it opens. 18.5/20 points (JH)  (4/2019)

K&L Notes

PLEASE NOTE: This product is 6 bottles in its Original Wooden Case (OWC), sold only as a 6-bottle case to protect ideal provenance. If the wines must be shipped, they will be sent in pulp shippers to protect the bottles, with the wood case shipped separately. Will Call or Local Delivery orders can be handled as intact OWCs. Please detail any special handling requests at checkout online, or call us with specific instructions.


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Price: $1,550.00

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By: Trey Beffa | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/3/2019 | Send Email
Very structured and firm, the tannins are balanced with layers of red and black fruits that nearly melt into your mouth. Big and dense, the 2018 Las Cases is a serious wine. One for the cellar! A blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot and 9% Cabernet Franc.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

Specific Appellation:

Saint Julien

- St. Julien, the smallest of the four famous appellations of the Haut Medoc, is known for highly extracted, finely structured, Cabernet-based reds. It is nestled between Pauillac to the north and Margaux to the south. Like St. Estephe, there are no first growths in this area. Leoville-las-Cases, Leoville Poyferre, Leoville Barton, Ducru Beaucaillou, and Gruard Larose are the second-growths of St. Julien followed by Lagrange which is the only third-growth. Beychevelle, Branaire Ducru, St. Pierre, and Talbot, which are all fourth-growth wines, round out the grand cru classe chateaux. In the last several vintages, wineries from this appellation have been out-performing their traditional rankings making many of the wines from this region some of the best values in red wine today.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.5