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Chateau Latour 

Chateau Latour stopped offering its new vintage en primeur after the 2011 was released, following which it made the decision to hold vintages back until they were beginning to reach primary maturity. Today we have reached that date for Latour 2012 and Les Forts de Latour 2014.

In 2012, Latour has produced a masterful wine. With its famous terroir, the Chateau has powered its way to the pinnacle of the first growths. Neal Martin says - ‘It has always been a candidate for wine of the vintage... just have a bit of patience.’ Still very much in its youth, the fruit is dense & brilliantly layered, but the soft tannins allude to a Latour that will give immense pleasure.

Price is always a factor with these Ex-Chateau Latour releases and often the price has missed the mark. So we are pleased to see that the Chateau has priced the 2012 release sensibly, it is comparable to other vintages of similar quality and style such as, 2004, 2007, 2008 & 2011.

The vintage of Les Forts de Latour being released this year is the renowned 2014, produced from a hot, dry summer that was followed by a later than usual harvest. The 2014 Forts has a vivid, crimson colour; it is deeply scented and most certainly destined for the long-haul. Les Forts de Latour is a great wine on its own merit and is more than a glimpse of the Grand Vin; priced at £1680 it is a brilliant buy.

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2012 Ch. Latour, Pauillac

£2100 per six IB

96 Points (Neal Martin, Vinous)

The 2012 Latour has a potent bouquet of blackberry, graphite and distinctive tertiary notes [instead of more marine scents observed four years earlier]. Initially, the palate is slightly disjointed on the entry and displays a subtle herbal quality, plus hints of pencil shavings. The 2012 demands a few minutes to really coalesce and achieve the precision and pixelation that have been the hallmark of this Grand Vin in its youth. Layers of black fruit coat the mouth, and a bitter edge lends tension, particularly toward the very persistent finish. Though its release implies, and the rhetoric from the château indicates, that it is ready to drink, if you want my advice, cellar the 2012 for another five or six years to witness it in full flight. It has always been a candidate for wine of the vintage... just have a bit of patience.

96+ Points (Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate)

The 2012 Latour is a blend of 90.2% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9.6% Merlot and 0.2% Petit Verdot. Medium to deep garnet colored, the nose slowly, measuredly emerges with notions of preserved Morello cherries, baked blackcurrants and blackberry compote, giving way to nuances of pencil shavings, unsmoked cigars, Chinese five spice and sandalwood plus ever so subtle hints of cardamom and eucalyptus. Medium-bodied, the palate delivers mouth-coating black and red fruit preserves with a firm, grainy-textured frame and fantastic freshness, finishing with a veritable firework display of lingering spices and minerals. This is a more restrained, relatively elegant vintage of Latour that may not have that “iron fist in a velvet glove” power of the greatest vintages but nonetheless struts its superior terroir and behind-the-scenes savoir faire with impressive panache. It is drinking nicely now with suitably rounded-off, approachable tannins, and the tertiary characters are just beginning to bring some more cerebral elements into the compote of temptingly primary black fruits. But, if you’re looking to drink it in full, flamboyant swing, give it another 5-10 years in bottle and drink it over the next 20-25 years+.


2014 Les Forts de Latour, Pauillac

£1680 per 12  IB

93 Points (Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate)

The 2014 Les Forts de Latour is a blend of 71.4% Cabernet Sauvignon and 28.6% Merlot. Deep garnet-purple colored, it needs a little coaxing to reveal expanding scents of blackcurrant pastilles, baked plums and boysenberries with suggestions of wood smoke, fragrant earth, cast-iron pan and charcuterie plus a faint waft of black truffles. Medium-bodied, the earthy/savory palate has loads of lively black fruit with a refreshing line and firm, grainy tannins, finishing on a lingering ferrous note.

93 Points (Neal Martin, Vinous)

The 2014 Les Forts de Latour has a smudged, quite opulent bouquet with lavish red fruit, leather and undergrowth scents, more forward than I would expect from a wine this youthful. The palate is medium-bodied with soft tannin and a little chewy in the mouth. Like the nose, this Les Forts de Latour feels unusually decadent for the vintage with a sweet finish that needs to muster more reserve and breeding. It is not unlikeable, quite the opposite, but it needs to develop more Pauillac characteristics. Tasted blind at the annual Southwold tasting. 

We also have these superb physical vintages of Latour, all lying in the Seckford cellars.


Vintage

Chateau

Price

Case

Qty

Duty

2005

Ch. Latour

£535

75cl Bottle

1

UB

2005

Ch. Latour

£6,250

12 x 75cl Bottle

1

UB

2005

Ch. Latour

£6,000

6 x 1.5L Magnum

1

UB

2006

Ch. Latour

£2,145

3 x 1.5L Magnum

1

UB

           

1994

Les Forts de Latour

£1,800

12 x 75cl Bottle

1

DP

1999

Les Forts de Latour

£150

75cl Bottle

1

DP

2001

Les Forts de Latour

£1,750

24 x 37.5cl Bottle

1

UB

2001

Les Forts de Latour

£1,875

6 x 1.5L Magnum

1

DP

2003

Les Forts de Latour

£1,795

12 x 75cl Bottle

1

UB

2004

Les Forts de Latour

£1,595

12 x 75cl Bottle

1

UB

2006

Les Forts de Latour

£1,695

12 x 75cl Bottle

3

UB

           

2002

Pauillac de Latour

£650

12 x 75cl Bottle

1

UB

2007

Pauillac de Latour

£650

12 x 75cl Bottle

1

UB

 

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