Leoville Barton 2012
Deep ruby colour with tight garnet rim. It opens up fine with some complexity, mainly from using four varieties, with 83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc. The first nose is filled with maturity-classy and complex tones, delicate woods, black(red) currant, cherries, prune, and black tea. The palate reflects the nose and is accessible, soft, medium-bodied, easy to drink, not particularly powerful and a little less robust than Barton can be, but already very accessible, with integrated tannins and a fresh acid structure. Medium length in the finish and balanced in itself. Not a great vintage but a great drinking pleasure.
The score is consistently high, for example:
WE 94–96. Barrel sample. Firmly tannic, this wine is dry and extracted. There's potential for this powerful, impressive wine to bear its very dry character with the weight of its fruit. Edited.
VertdeVIn 95. The nose is fruity and fresh and offers some minerality and good definition. There are notes of crunchy blackberry, crushed strawberry and more slightly crushed raspberry combined with touches of blueberry, delicate hints of liquorice, and cardamom, as well as discreet hints of vanilla and almost sweet blond tobacco. The palate is fruity, well-balanced, stretched out, and precise and offers suppleness, good definition, a certain gourmandise, power with delicacy, harmony and an acidic structure. On the palate, this wine expresses juicy/acidic blackberry, crunchy redcurrant and slightly fresh plum notes with a touch of fresh violet, delicate vanilla/vanilla bean, zan and a subtle, almost sappy edge (in the background) and a discreet hint of chocolate. Nice acidity and ripe/acidic, juicy fruit. Edited.