Spotlight On Saint-Julien: A Tour of Superb Seconds


Spotlight On Saint-Julien: A Tour of Superb Seconds

Cat Stephani |
It’s that time of year again! While our team heads off to Bordeaux to explore the coming release of the 2022 vintage, we thought we’d offer our fellow claret classicists a tour of their very own – a spotlight on Saint-Julien and its superb Second Growths.

With their elegant fruit, remarkable balance, and great finesse, Saint-Julien’s quintessential expressions of classic claret are an endless well of reliable benchmark Bordeaux. From the formidable Léoville-Las-Cases to the seductive Ducru-Beaucaillou, the region's leading Second Growths showcase incredible consistency year in and year out. An in-depth tour awaits with our latest selection of Saint-Julien and its classified greats!

Château Ducru-Beaucaillou
Capturing the region’s great consistency across vintages, Ducru-Beaucaillou is a gorgeous and seductive expression of Saint-Julien with a surprisingly high proportion of Cabernet Sauvignon. Aged almost entirely in 90% new oak, you can rely on it to be one of the most polished and high-achieving wines of the appellation each and every year.

Our current offerings are a window into the full range of this splendorous château, from the effortlessly refined 1986 to the aromatic vibrancy of 2006.

Château Léoville Barton
Far more formidable and masculine than it was a decade ago, the traditional Château Léoville Barton captures the essence of Saint-Julien’s classical profile. This is the meeting point of power and finesse, where youthful cassis gives way to a certain cedarwood complexity over time.

In a near-perfect window, an hour's decant is all you need with the graceful and poised 1996. For excellent value, the harmonious 2014 is laden with graphite-tinged blackberry fruit and years of drinking ahead.

Château Léoville-Las-Cases
Undoubtedly home to the richest and most powerful wines of Saint-Julien; structure, confidence, and longevity await beyond the lion-topped gateway entrance to Léoville-Las-Cases.

If it’s maturity you’re after, enveloping aromas of dark bilberry, rose, and eucalyptus unfurl with an impressive pungency in the 1989.

Not to be overlooked, the underrated, cooler vintage of 2001 offers a rewarding bouquet of crushed black fruits, graphite and leather. Silky yet impressively intense, you won’t want to sleep on this long and refined expression of benchmark Saint-Julien.

Château Léoville Poyferré
If Barton is the most classic of the Léoville trio, and Las-Cases the most concentrated and majestic, then Léoville Poyferré is the most sensual and voluptuous. The higher proportion of Merlot in the blend lends itself toward a more fragrant and earlier drinking take on Saint-Julien.

With rich damson fruit and crushed violet, the 2017 offers a more mineral-driven expression of Poyferré, while the sumptuous and powerful 2015 is loaded with opulent cassis and inky purple fruits, true to house style.

Château Gruaud Larose
Balanced by its superb weight and structure, Gruaud Larose is the most fruit-driven of Saint-Julien’s seconds, often rivaling Léoville-Las-Cases in richness. Built with long aging in mind, the best vintages evolve effortlessly for decades. Beguiling layers of cedar, stony aromas, and soft tannin await with the mature 1989.

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