2023 Lacoste Borie, Pauillac, Bordeaux

2023 Lacoste Borie, Pauillac, Bordeaux

Product: 20238017725
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2023 Lacoste Borie, Pauillac, Bordeaux

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Blend: 56% Cabernet Sauvignon; 33% Merlot; 11% Cabernet Franc. 

This has lots of juicy, easy fruit, with a little note of confit from the Merlot. The wine has plenty of freshness and could perhaps have a little more detail, but this is one aimed at more immediate pleasures rather than long-term ageing. It has the slightly old-fashioned sense of a traditional Claret and will have many devotees as a result. It has sufficient substance for a little bottle age, after which its traditional virtues will be further enhanced. 

Drink 2026 - 2034 

Our score: 15/20

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Critics reviews

Jane Anson91/100

42% new oak (reduced down from 50% over the last few years).

It's a medium-intensity ruby red with a good grip and slightly old-school tannins, but this has real charm and juice. It’s savoury and easy to drink, with good Pauillac typicity.

Drink 2029 - 2040

Jane Anson, Inside Bordeaux (April 2024)

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Neal Martin, Vinous88-90/100

The 2023 Lacoste-Borie was picked from September 11 to 28 at 48hL/ha. It bursts with red fruit on the nose—raspberry and wild strawberry—forward and quite generous in keeping with the vintage. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly grainy tannins on the entry. Moderately deep, it tapers slightly toward the graphite-infused finish. This Deuxième Vin has an easy-drinking sensibility and should be broached over the next decade.

Emeline Borie welcomed me at Grand Puy Lacoste, a Pauillac estate that has been on a roll in recent years. “When we tried the wines from vat, it seemed like the Merlot and the Cabernet Sauvignon were from different vintages, the latter with much more freshness and less alcohol,” she confessed. “But that actually made it easier as the intermediate lots were obviously either in the Grand Vin or not. My father wasn’t here, so it took 90 minutes less than usual! He came for the final decision, and he approved. The pH is the same for 2022 and 2023 at 3.56.”

Drink 2026 - 2035

Neal Martin, Vinous.com (April 2024)

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Antonio Galloni, Vinous88-90/100

The 2023 Lacoste-Borie is a soft, supple second wine to drink on release, while its fruity, open-knit personality is on display. Succulent red cherry, spice and rose petal are nicely pushed forward. Lovely aromatics from the Franc linger.

Drink 2025 - 2033

Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com (April 2024)

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Wine Advocate90-92/100

Charming and succulent, the 2023 Lacoste-Borie bursts with pretty aromas of dark berries, petals and spices, followed by a medium to full-bodied, ample and seamless palate that's fleshy and fragrant, exhibiting excellent purity of fruit. This delicious blend of 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot and 11% Cabernet Franc will offer a broad drinking window.

This 90-hectare estate (some 60 hectares of which are in production), situated in a single block on a gravel dome around the château, has long been a favourite among Bordeaux insiders. Under Emeline Borie's direction, subtle refinements have been made: more than 100 soil pits were dug to better understand the château's geology; herbicides have never been used here, but now 20 hectares are devoted to a trial of organic farming; since 2013, a vertical press is used; and since 2012, the new vintage goes to barrel immediately after malolactic fermentation, before being blended early in the new year.

Today's wines are a touch more immediately charming and structurally polished than the Grand-Puy-Lacoste of 15 years ago, yet they have lost none of their classic Cabernet-driven Pauillac characters and a subtle evolution in cooperage choices, favouring lighter toasts, which means their oak has never been so well-integrated out of the gates.

William Kelley, Wine Advocate (April 2024)

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Jancis Robinson MW16/20

56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample.

Round, fresh and seemingly relatively open. Crunchy fruit and fine tannins. Plenty of energy. It's appealing now but should keep for a while. 

Drink 2027 - 2036

James Lawther MW, JancisRobinson.com (May 2024)

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James Suckling92-93/100

56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot and 11% Cabernet Franc.

This is so bright and vibrant, with plenty of fruit. Very pure and lively. Medium-bodied with a supple, silky mouthfeel. Already delicious. Second wine of Grand-Puy-Lacoste. 

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com (May 2024)

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3.56pH. 45% second wine production. A yield of 48hl/ha.

Ripe blackcurrants and cherries. Some black pepper and crushed stones on the nose too. Clean and juicy, very light and fragrant, subtle, soft and calm. It’s not high-toned but certainly on the fresher side, but it's really all in one line. Very pleasant with a real salty, dark, tangy liquorice grip on the finish with excellent purity of fruit. Persistent and gently powderful. Charming and easy to drink. 3.56pH. 

Drink 2030 - 2049

Georgina Hindle, Decanter.com (April 2024)

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Jeb Dunnuck89-91/100

First made in 1982, the 2023 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste Lacoste-Borie is the second wine of Château Grand-Puy Lacoste and is based on 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, and 11% Cabernet Franc, harvested from September 11 to the 28th. It boasts a healthy purple hue and juicy notes of ripe black cherries, currants, violets, spring flowers, and a kiss of graphite. Medium-bodied, upfront, and charming, it has the bright acidity of the vintage, a pure, juicy style, and a good finish.

Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com (May 2024)

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About this WINE

Chateau Grand-Puy-Lacoste

Chateau Grand-Puy-Lacoste

Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste is a 5ème Cru Classé Pauillac estate which has for many years been consistently outperforming its classification. Grand-Puy-Lacoste is located a couple of kilometres west of the town of Pauillac and is owned and run by François-Xavier Borie.

Grand-Puy-Lacoste's 90 hectares of vines (Cabernet Sauvignon 75%, Merlot 25%) are in one block surrounding the substantial 19th century château and lie on deep gravel beds over limestone. The grapes are fermented in temperature-controlled stainless steel vats and the wine is then matured in oak barriques (50% new) for 18 months.

Grand-Puy-Lacoste combines marvellous cigar box perfume with rich blackcurrant and cassis fruit and velvety power which is the epitome of top class Pauillac at its very best.

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Pauillac is the aristocrat of the Médoc boasting boasting 75 percent of the region’s First Growths and with Grand Cru Classés representing 84 percent of Pauillac's production.

For a small town, surrounded by so many familiar and regal names, Pauillac imparts a slightly seedy impression. There are no grand hotels or restaurants – with the honourable exception of the establishments owned by Jean-Michel Cazes – rather a small port and yacht harbour, and a dominant petrochemical plant.

Yet outside the town, , there is arguably the greatest concentration of fabulous vineyards throughout all Bordeaux, including three of the five First Growths. Bordering St Estèphe to the north and St Julien to the south, Pauillac has fine, deep gravel soils with important iron and marl deposits, and a subtle, softly-rolling landscape, cut by a series of small streams running into the Gironde. The vineyards are located on two gravel-rich plateaux, one to the northwest of the town of Pauillac and the other to the south, with the vines reaching a greater depth than anywhere else in the Médoc.

Pauillac's first growths each have their own unique characteristics; Lafite Rothschild, tucked in the northern part of Pauillac on the St Estèphe border, produces Pauillac's most aromatically complex and subtly-flavoured wine. Mouton Rothschild's vineyards lie on a well-drained gravel ridge and - with its high percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon - can produce (in its best years) Pauillac's most decadently rich, fleshy and exotic wine.

Latour, arguably Bordeaux's most consistent First Growth, is located in southern Pauillac next to St Julien. Its soil is gravel-rich with superb drainage, and Latour's vines penetrate as far as five metres into the soil. It produces perhaps the most long-lived wines of the Médoc.

Recommended Châteaux
Ch. Lafite-Rothschild, Ch. Latour, Ch. Mouton-Rothschild, Ch. Pichon-Longueville Baron, Ch. Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Ch. Lynch-Bages, Ch. Grand-Puy-Lacoste, Ch, Pontet-Canet, Les Forts de Latour, Ch. Haut-Batailley, Ch. Batailley, Ch. Haut-Bages Libéral.

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Cabernet Sauvignon Blend

Cabernet Sauvignon Blend

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.

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