PESSAC-LÉOGNANANDGRAVES Pessac-Léognan is themost important appellationwithin the Graves district, which takes its name from the gravel soil which, coupledwith the pine forests, serve to create a distinctive and distinguished offering. The early ripening terroir was a huge benefit during 2021, fully ripe grapes were harvested before the October rain. The clay found in Pessac is particularly good for Merlot so a higher percentage is found in the blends, there is also limestone soil which bring extra freshness and elegance to the wines. Proximity to Bordeaux itself - and surrounded by its suburbs - means it enjoys the warmest micro-climate of the communes; as always harvesting began earliest here. Alongside the Haut-Brion family, one also finds the celebrated Cru Classé wines of Château Pape-Clément, Château Smith-Haut-Lafitte, Château Haut-Bailly, and Domaine de Chevalier. The most celebrated Châteaux of the region, including Domaine de Chevalier and La Mission Haut-Brion, also producemuch-admired dry whitewines, which you canfind at the end of the list. Wewere impressedwith the quality of thesewines this year thanks to their high acidity and intense flavours. Despite all these famous estates Pessac canbe amixedbag –which iswherewe come in toadvise! The lesserChâteaux here performed exceptionally well in 2021.


CHÂTEAUOLIVIER, GRANDCRUCLASSÉ 58%Merlot, 40% Cabernet sauvignon, 2% Petit verdot. The nose is generous in fresh fruit. The palate is quite savoury with sweet blackberry fruit and liquorice. Quite pure, simple and savoury on this finish. The tannin is fine and grippy.

DOMAINEDECHEVALIER, GRANDCRUCLASSÉ 63% Cabernet sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit verdot, 2% Cabernet franc. A bold nose of flowers, new oak and black plum and red fruit, very much in Olivier Barnard’s style. Some good herbal notes on the nose of thyme and mint. Cool pure cassis on the palate with a bit of raspberry, the tannin is fine dark and very grippy. Good and generous. Well-made but will need time. DRINK: 2028 - 2042 £265 - £320 / 6BOTTLES WA93-95 LACHAPELLEDEMISSIONHAUT-BRION 51.3% Merlot, 45.2% Cabernet sauvignon, 3.5 Cabernet franc. 27% new oak. Dark inky nose, quite cool and restrained with lots of cassis. Crunchy cool and chalky, the palate has some bright red, blue and black fruit. The tannin is very fine and abundant giving a big structure, the freshness is here but the whole is a little restrained (a bit like Cheval Blanc). Some good ripe fruit on the finishwhich ismarked by dark tannin and savoury notes. DRINK: 2026 - 2038 £330 - £400 / 6BOTTLES WA90-92 CHÂTEAULESCARMESHAUT-BRION “A brilliant and intensely individual wine, the 2021 Les Carmes Haut-Brion shows immense potential. Wafting from the glass with aromas of rich berries and plums mingled with notions of raw cocoa, loamy soil, rose petals, burnt sage and vine smoke, it’s medium to full-bodied, vibrant and seamless, with a deep, dynamic core of fruit and a long, penetrating finish. Transcending the limitations of the vintage, it wouldn’t surprise me were this wine ultimately to surpass the 2019 and 2020 in quality. It’s a blend of 40% Cabernet Franc, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Merlot that’smaturing in 70%newoak and the rest in 15-hectoliter foudres. Tasted twice.” -WILLIAMKELLEY,WINEADVOCATE DRINK: 2028 - 2046 £440 - £525 / 6BOTTLES WA94-97

A cool easy drinker. DRINK: 2024 - 2036

£210 - £250 / 12 BOTTLES


CHÂTEAULATOUR-MARTILLAC, CRUCLASSÉ 60% Cabernet sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Petit verdot. A pretty floral nose, rich with plum and blackcurrant fruit. The palate is fleshy but there is some serious grip on the finish from the fine but ripe tannins. Good, elegant, sweet fruit on the dense mid-palate finishes saline with a menthol lift. A serious option offering very good value. DRINK: 2026 - 2038 £225 - £285 / 12 BOTTLES HAUT-BAILLY II 65%Merlot, 35%Cabernet sauvignon. The nose here is punchy with pure ripe red fruit. Cool and mineral with graphite notes. Quite serious. The palate is rich and rounded, some lovely ripe fruit on the mid palate, herbs and oak smoke follow on the medium long finish. The tannin is well worked and silky with not too much grip. Lots of good acidity here and good body and flashy fruit and oak notes on the finish. Very well made. DRINK: 2026 - 2038 £150 - £180 / 6BOTTLES WA89-91 CHÂTEAUMALARTIC-LAGRAVIERE, CRUCLASSÉ 56% Merlot, 41% Cabernet sauvignon, 2.5% Petit verdot, 0.5% Cabernet franc. A slightly volatile nose full of dark Cabernet fruit with some red berries. The palate is quite fleshy but the structure here is big. Good concentration, chewy in thefinishwithfirmandfinedark tannins, good freshness. DRINK: 2026 - 2038 £155 - £195 / 6BOTTLES WA90-92

“[The best 2021s] evoke the 1996 vintage….the vintage’s very best wines largely transcend them. But what is clear is that, were the 2021s transposed to the decade of the 1990s, they would be considered the product of a superb vintage.” –WINEADVOCATE



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