The 2021 Le Boscq, now a Cru Bourgeois Exceptionel, is one of the highest gravel croupes in Saint-Estèphe. Under the Dourthe family ownership much of the vine orientation has been changed. They also increased the amount of Cabernet in the final blend. Matured in 30% new oak, this has a very intense, and you might call it "ambitious", bouquet with blackberry, tobacco and white pepper. Touches of pressed violets emerge with time. The 6% Petit Verdot is quite expressive here. The palate is medium-bodied with dense, quite chewy tannins. A bold and quite concentrated Saint-Estèphe with a spicy, slightly herbaceous finish, this deserves 4-6 years in bottle. This is a well-crafted 2021.
Drink 2027 - 2043
Neal Martin, vinous.com, (May 2022)
The 2021 Le Boscq is fabulous. Rich, heady and super-expressive, the 2021 offers exquisite aromatic intensity allied to deep, pliant fruit, all in an earthy/savory style that captures the essence of Saint-Estèphe. Best of all, Le Boscq should be a screaming value.
Drink 2026 - 2041
Antonio Galloni, vinous.com (May 2022)
The 2021 Le Boscq exhibits aromas of sweet berries, crème de cassis, tobacco leaf and loamy soil. Medium to full-bodied, lively and nicely balanced, it's a creditable effort from Dourthe.
William Kelley, Wine Advocate (Apr 2022)
Good fruit expression, well-textured blueberry and raspberry fruit, with firm tannins although skirting with under-ripe character. Plenty of dark ruby colour extraction, they have captured some of the enjoyment of the 2021 vintage, proving the consistency of an estate that is always worth following.
Drink 2024 - 2038
Jane Anson, janeanson.com (May 2022)
About this WINE
Chateau le Boscq
Château Le Boscq is a Cru Bourgeois wine estate in the St Estephe appellation in Bordeaux, and has been owned by Dourthe since 1995. The Dourthe is part of the CVBG group, which also comprises Kressman and Delor, and is one of the leading négociant companies in Bordeaux.
The property owns 18 hectares of vineyards with a high proportion of Merlot (60%). Dourthe have managed the estate with a view to producing a high quality wine, with relatively low yields.
St Estèphe is the northernmost of the most important communes of the Médoc and borders Pauillac on its southernmost border, with only a gully and stream separates it from Ch. Lafite. To the north lies the Bas-Médoc.
St Estèphe is defined by the depth of its gravel, which is ubiquitous but of varying depths and occasionally very shallow, when clay predominates. This keeps the soil cooler and wetter than its counterparts so that the wines can appear fresh in lighter vintages, but superbly successful in hot, dry years.
The best châteaux in the south of the commune have the deepest soil and the thickest gravel. Cos d'Estournel has an exceptional terroir with its vineyards being located on a south-facing ridge of gravel with excellent drainage.
St Estèphe is the least gravelly of main Médoc communes and in the north of the commune the vineyards are heavier and more clay-based leading to a rustic style of wine being produced.
The wines can appear austere in youth with a discernable ferric note at some châteaux, but the best typically display good depth of colour, pronounced acidity an tannins in youth and are exceptionally long-lived. At their best, they are the equal of almost any Bordeaux. The well-regarded St Estèphe co-operative controls the production of about half the appellation.
Cabernet Sauvignon lends itself particularly well in blends with Merlot. This is actually the archetypal Bordeaux blend, though in different proportions in the sub-regions and sometimes topped up with Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot.
In the Médoc and Graves the percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend can range from 95% (Mouton-Rothschild) to as low as 40%. It is particularly suited to the dry, warm, free- draining, gravel-rich soils and is responsible for the redolent cassis characteristics as well as the depth of colour, tannic structure and pronounced acidity of Médoc wines. However 100% Cabernet Sauvignon wines can be slightly hollow-tasting in the middle palate and Merlot with its generous, fleshy fruit flavours acts as a perfect foil by filling in this cavity.
In St-Emilion and Pomerol, the blends are Merlot dominated as Cabernet Sauvignon can struggle to ripen there - when it is included, it adds structure and body to the wine. Sassicaia is the most famous Bordeaux blend in Italy and has spawned many imitations, whereby the blend is now firmly established in the New World and particularly in California and Australia.