Bordeaux 2021: Bottled Wines – Top Ratings and Reviews

By | 20 February 2024

I don’t taste the cask samples of the new vintage of Bordeaux en primeurs, for quite a few reasons, but I do like the opportunity to assess the new vintage once it’s in bottle. 2021 wasn’t a vintage that got the trade terribly excited. It was viticulturally challenging: there was frost at the beginning of the season, and then surviving grapes had to deal with cool temperatures and quite a bit of downy mildew. The proof is in pudding, though. Lots of really nice wines in a more classic style with freshness and moderate alcohol levels. These are my scores and notes from the UGC tasting in November 2023. Spared the usual hype, you can probably pick some of these up at sensible prices.

Château Ferrande Graves Blanc 2021
40% Sémillon, 30% Sauvignon Blanc, 30% Sauvignon Gris. Bright and pure with crisp citrus fruit showing precision and good acidity. Linear and quite taut, with class. 90/100

Château Bouscaut Pessac-Léognan 2021
70% Sémillon, 30% Sauvignon Blanc. Lovely aromatics here: grapefruit and pear with some smoky barrel-ferment notes. Pristine. The palate is pure, focused and detailed with high acidity and a beautiful focus to the fruit, with supporting oak. Superb. 94/100

Château Carbonnieux Pessac-Léognan 2021
67% Sauvignon Blanc, 33% Sémillon. Stylish and linear with nice focused citrus and pear fruit, showing good concentration and nice acidity. Stylish and a bit unfurled. 92/100

Domaine de Chevalier Pessac-Léognan 2021
70% Sémillon, 30% Sauvignon Blanc. Good concentration of taut citrus fruit here with nice brightness. Has some pear, some lemon and then a twist of spiciness. The oak is very much in the background and there’s potential for development here. 93/100

Château de Fieuzal Pessac-Léognan 2021
65% Sauvignon Blanc, 35% Sémillon. Bright, linear and focused with zippy lemon and lime fruit with a hint of aniseed and nice acidity. A very pure, focused style that offers lots of pleasure and potential for development. 93/100

Château de France Pessac-Léognan 2021
80% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Sémillon. Restrained aromatics here but very appealing taut citrus and pear fruit with some subtle nutty hints on the finish. 90/100

Château Larrivet Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 2021
78% Sauvignon Blanc, 22% Sémillon. Lovely aromatics with grapefruit, lime and some smokiness. The palate is pure, vivid and bright with nicely concentrated citrus fruits and fine spicy framing. Serious stuff, and very bright. 94/100

Château Latour-Martillac Pessac-Léognan 2021
58% Sauvignon Blanc, 32% Sémillon. Juicy and linear with focused, taut citrus fruit. Light on the finish, but with good acidity. 91/100

Château La Louvière Pessac-Léognan 2021
100% Sauvignon Blanc. This has a beautiful balance to it with concentrated lemon, pear and grapefruit notes and some stony mineral notes, finishing with a nice acid line. 93/100

Château Olivier Pessac-Léognan 2021
80% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Sémillon. Quite concentrated and dense with bright lemon and pear fruit with a nice acid line. Juicy and linear, with good focus. 92/100

Château Pape Clément Pessac-Léognan 2021
70% Sauvignon Blanc, 30% Sémillon. Very stylish with bold citrus, pear and white peach supported by well integrated, classy oak. This is an impressive wine with a good acid line and potential for development. 94/100

Château Picque Caillou Pessac-Léognan 2021
90% Sauvignon Blanc, 10% Sémillon. The character is marked by a bright and linear feel accentuated by keen acidity. There’s a pleasant intensity in its citrus and pear fruit flavors. An engaging acid line enhances the overall quality. Rated 91/100

Château de Chantegrive Graves 2021
70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot. The exhibition of fresh aromatics comes from sweet open berry fruits. The palate experience is a blend of savoury and taut, adorned with nice fruity undertones. Bright notes of blackcurrant and berry amplifies the fruitiness, complemented by a spice of oak. A stylish blend indeed, rated 92/100.

Château Ferrande Graves 2021
50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 50% Merlot. The blend showcases a good density of forward blackcurrant fruit along with some appealing spicy notes. This wine carries freshness and concentration, making it truly attractive. Rated 93/100.

Château Rahoul Graves 2021
67% Merlot, 24% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot. The wine carries a grainy and slightly gravelly texture. This is complemented by good concentration and a hint of stony minerality. Sweet berry fruits add to the overall flavour. The wine is well proportioned and is rated 92/100.

Château Bouscaut Pessac-Léognan 2021
This wine is a blend of 47% Merlot, 44% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 9% Malbec. It features some oak and structural elements underneath the sweet black cherry and blackberry fruit flavors. It has a nice grip with a rating of 91/100.

Château Carbonnieux Pessac-Léognan 2021
This bottle is made up of 58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, and 7% Petit Verdot. It shows a good structure with notes of gravel and chalky minerals along with sweet blackcurrant and blackberry fruit. The balance is well-executed, earning it a rating of 92/100.

Château Les Carmes Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 2021
This wine blend has 40% Cabernet Franc, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 25% Merlot. It strikes a great balance with good acidity and an appropriate structure, while presenting pure and linear red berry and blackcurrant fruitiness. The focused and linear fruit profile is stylish and understated yet very good, justifying its rating of 94/100.

Domaine de Chevalier Pessac-Léognan 2021
This wine is composed of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, and 5% Cabernet Franc. It has great concentration and focus, complemented by real purity. Linear red cherry and blackcurrant fruits mingle with the fine tannins and some firm but beautifully managed tannins. It promises a bright future, hence its rating of 95/100.

Château de Fieuzal Pessac-Léognan 2021
45% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot. Delicious blackcurrant fruit with a hint of creaminess, complemented by excellent structure and acidity. Vivid and expressive with a balance that provides immense satisfaction. Rated 93/100.

Château de France Pessac-Léognan 2021
60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot. It has a core of luscious berry fruits with appealing texture, and a dash of spicy oak. Well-structured and forward, this distinctive wine exhibits lovely fruit. Rated 92/100.

Château Haut-Bailly Pessac-Léognan 2021
65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Franc. Exquisitely balanced offering a core of sweet berry and blackcurrant fruit with admirable concentration and pleasing acidity. Young and tight, with all elements blending harmoniously. Promises to age gracefully. Rated 95/100.

Château Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan 2021
55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 10% Petit Verdot. It exhibits extremely ripe, open savory fruit with some meaty, spicy, slightly ferocious notes, leading to a tingling slightly metallic finish. Ripe, open and old school. 88/100.

Château Larrivet Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 2021
81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Cabernet Franc. The spicy, coffee-infused oak is quite prominent here, and clashes a bit with the polished berry and black fruits. Ambitious and may resolve in time. 90/100 

Château Latour-Martillac Pessac-Léognan 2021
60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot. Ripe but restrained showing good balance and weight with sweet black fruits and a grainy, spicy structure. Quite classic. 93/100

Château La Louvière Pessac-Léognan 2021
65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot Fresh and focused with bright, sweet berry and blackcurrant fruit. Nice flesh here: there’s some grainy structure but also appealing sweet fruit. 92/100

Château Malartic-Lagravière Pessac-Léognan 2021
67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc. I like this: it’s a bright, lean, taut expression of Pessac with keen acidity supporting focused cherry and raspberry fruit, along with a touch of sweet blackcurrant. Juicy and grainy. 94/100 

Château Olivier Pessac-Léognan 2021
Comprised of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, and 5% Petit Verdot. This wine strikes a balance of freshness and leanness, featuring expressive taut blackcurrant and cherry fruit. Its finish impresses with good acidity and a touch of tannin. Rating: 93/100

Château Pape Clément Pessac-Léognan 2021
Features 60% Merlot and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose is a combination of cocoa, spice, coffee, and rich blackcurrant fruit, with the oak marking a strong presence. The wine demonstrates good concentration and structure on the palate. Truly made for ageing, it’s expected to mature exquisitely once the oak is fully integrated. Rating: 94/100

Château Picque Caillou Pessac-Léognan 2021
A mix of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, and 10% Petit Verdot. Presents as juicy and linear with bright cherry and blackcurrant fruit. Balances nicely with its acidity and matching structure. Its style is pure and may be approachable early. Rating: 93/100

Château Balestard La Tonnelle Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
Composed of 82% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc, and 7% Cabernet Sauvignon. Exhibits some structure and a hint of oak. Tastes of vivid berry fruits, a hint of spice, and a subtle tar finish. Rating: 91/100

Château Berliquet Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
61% Merlot, 39% Cabernet Franc. Lively aromatics: juicy and bright with some spicy detail. The palate has nice bright, pure berry fruits with some freshness on the finish. Juicy and vivid. 92/100

Château Canon Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
71% Merlot, 29% Cabernet Franc. Nice acidity here with fresh, vibrant berry and cherry fruits, showing some juiciness and a nice acid line. Pure and fine. 92/100

Château Canon-La-Gaffelière Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
35% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Franc, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. This is stylish, showing ripe but restrained cherry and berry fruits, with some nice structure in support. Has ripeness and texture with lovely purity, finishing long and fresh. 94/100

Château Cap de Mourlin Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
82% Merlot, 16% Cabernet Franc, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon. Chalky and grainy with nice bright berry and cherry fruits as well as some raspberry. Has nice juiciness and focus, finishing with fine spices. Impressive. 93/100

Château La Couspaude Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. This bright wine shows lovely freshness with chalky grainy structure supporting fresh red berry fruits. Really appealing and quite elegant in style. 94/100

Château La Dominique Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
85% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon. Nice grip to this wine which shows a concentration of ripe cherry and berry fruits. Polished, ripe and appealing with lots to like. 93/100

Clos Fourtet Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cabernet Franc. Brightly aromatic this is a detailed, textured wine that has a good concentration of sweet berry and blackcurrant fruit. Stylish and appealing, and already approachable, but has structure for mid-term ageing. 93/100

Château Franc Mayne Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
100% Merlot Open and sweetly fruited with some appley, slightly oxidative notes in the background. Sweet fruit dominates, but I’m wary of the oxidative characters. 87/100

Château La Gaffelière Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
Merlot (58%), Cabernet Franc (42%). The wine presents a rich, ripe and generous profile, with complementary spicy and cedary undertones that provide contrast to the dense berry and black cherry fruit. With notable palate weight and richness, it scores a 92/100.

Château Grand Mayne Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
Merlot (75%), Cabernet Franc (25%). This wine is dense, concentrated and rich, featuring stylish but noticeable spicy oak hints that provide a backseat to the sweet blackcurrant fruit. Displaying a significant impact, the style might be a bit constructed, yet it will be charming to many, earning a 92/100.

Château Larcis Ducasse Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
Merlot (86%), Cabernet Franc (14%). A luscious and very ripe offering with bold, sweetly rendered black fruit and slight structure, accompanied by a sprinkling of spicy oak flavour. Its feel is grainy and dense, indicating quite ripe attributes – score, 90/100.

Château Pavie Macquin Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
Merlot (79%), Cabernet Franc (19%), Cabernet Sauvignon (2%). This wine appears lively and vibrant, presenting vividly ripe notes of black cherry and blackcurrant fruit. Polished but not overdone, it offers a satisfyingly juicy finish and hints of spicy undercurrents, making it ripe for the tasting and appealing. It earns a 92/100.

Château La Tour Figeac Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021

60% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc. This wine exudes a perfumed, bright raspberry aroma with lots of freshness. The palate is pure, linear, fresh and elegant, boasting a red fruit character, well-integrated oak, and a pleasing texture. The vibrancy is paired with a textured fruit experience. Rating: 94/100

Château Troplong Mondot Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021

This wine is stylish and focused, showcasing a core of sweet red cherry and blackberry fruit complemented by nice structure and acidity. Everything is balanced and well-placed. Rating: 94/100

Château TrotteVieille Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021

Comprising 54% Cabernet Franc, 45% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine is fresh and bright, with a nice structure underlying the balanced berry fruits. Proportioned well, it offers a juicy, fresh experience but also has structure. Rating: 92/100

Château Valandraud Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021

Made up of 85% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc, and 6% Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine provides a nice structure, balancing well-integrated oak with dense berry fruits and finishing with a gravelly, stony twist. It’s ambitious and a bit unraveled, but there’s a lot of wine there. Rating: 94/100

Château Villemaurine Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2021
Consisting of 92% Merlot and 8% Cabernet Franc. This blend has sweet, ripe berry flavours, complemented with some fine spices and a twist of blackcurrant. The fruit taste is quite nice. It scores 92 out of 100.

Château Beauregard Pomerol 2021
A mix of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc. It has an appealing ripe, spicy aroma with sweet black fruits. The palate is ripe and quite rich, structured with fresh cherry and berry fruits and finishes with a stony twist. It receives a score of 92 out of 100.

Château Le Bon Pasteur Pomerol 2021
This blend is 80% Merlot, and 20% Cabernet Franc. It has a pleasant density, with coffee and cedar notes from the oak blending in fairly well with the ripe berry and blackcurrant fruit flavours. The style is polished. The score is 91 out of 100.

Château La Cabanne Pomerol 2021
With a composition of 94% Merlot and 6% Cabernet Franc. It has an excellent balance of sweet, pure, fresh cherry, and berry fruit flavours and then a hint of spicy structure. The style is stylish in a mid-weight style. Scores 92 out of 100.

Château Clinet Pomerol 2021
75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon. There’s nice density and structure here with some firmness under the sweet berry fruits. Has a bit of grip, and there’s some restraint to the fruit. Real potential for development. 94/100

Château La Croix de Gay Pomerol 2021
95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Ripe berry fruits combine with some spicy structure and a twist of oak, and the overall effect is good, but this needs time to integrate. 92/100

Château Gazin Pomerol 2021
100% Merlot. Lush and concentrated with luxurious, rich blackberry fruit, showing great density. It’s ripe and full, and some will really love this forward style. 91/100

Château Le Gay Pomerol 2021
Ripe and open showing sweet blackberry fruit with some tarry, spicy detail, finishing plump and lush. 91/100

Château Petit-Village Pomerol 2021
Composed of 75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine is impressive with smooth, ripe cherry and berry flavors and adequate oak, thus resulting in a sleek and appealing wine that maintains a sense of balance. Score: 93/100.

Château La Pointe Pomerol 2021
Made up of 82% Merlot and 18% Cabernet Franc. A pleasantly fragrant nose leads to a lively open palate boasting good acidity and a chalky texture to the blackcurrant fruit. It is fashionable and well balanced with a great structure. Score: 93/100.

Château Rouget Pomerol 2021
This is a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc. A wine that is both open and sweetly fruited, displaying bright yet lush blackberry and blackcurrant flavors alongside nice acidity. It’s already open, offering immediate enjoyment. Score: 91/100.

Château Clarke Listrac-Médoc 2021
Comprised of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon. A classic and really appealing wine sporting a chalky edge to the sweet blackcurrant fruit. It is beautifully proportioned with ripe fruit. Truly delightful. Score: 93/100.

Château Fonréaud Listrac-Médoc 2021
50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Fresh, bright, gravelly and with a slight twist of olive, this shows lovely fruit, and some chalky texture. 92/100

Château Fourcas Dupré Listrac-Médoc 2021
54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 46% Merlot. Cherries, plums and spice here with nice blackcurrant fruit and a bit of grip. Has good balance. 91/100

Château Fourcas Hosten Listrac-Médoc 2021
60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Nice aromatics. Palate is beautifully balanced with appealing ripe berry and blackcurrant fruit as well as some spiciness, and a gravelly twist to the finish. Very stylish and expressive. 94/100      

Château Chasse-Spleen Moulis-en-Médoc 2021
53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot. Dense, gravelly and nicely weighted in a classical style with lovely blackcurrant fruit. Has great balance. 94/100

Château Maucaillou Moulis-en-Médoc 2021 is made up of 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot. It is vibrant and lively, hinting at coffee and cedar owing to the oak. It also supports bright berry and blackcurrant fruit. It’s juicy and vivid. 92/100

Château Poujeaux Moulis-en-Médoc 2021 consists of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. It has smoky notes on the nose along with vivid, intense blackcurrant fruit, with good structure. It finishes firm. The fascinating evolution that it might undergo deserves mention. 92/100

Château Beaumont Haut-Médoc 202 has 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. It’s supple and approachable, carrying nice midweight bright blackcurrant fruit along with good acidity. It’s fleshy, bright, and has good purity. 91/100

Château Belgrave Haut-Médoc 2021 is made from 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. It’s open and fresh featuring cherry and plum fruit as well as a touch of blackcurrant. Its fresh style and nice fruitiness is noteworthy. 91/100

Château de Camensac Haut-Médoc 2021
66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot. Juicy, vivid and bright with nicely focused blackcurrant and black cherry fruit. Good balance here with a nice juicy finish. 91/100

Château Cantemerle Haut-Médoc 2021
65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot. Some nice green hints on the nose with well balanced, juicy, mid-weight berry and blackcurrant fruit. Has good acidity. 91/100

Château Citran Haut-Médoc 2021
60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc. Supple, midweight and juicy showing sweet berry and red cherry fruit. It’s open and expressive, and very drinkable in a classic style. 90/100

Château Coufran Haut-Médoc 2021
85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon. Taut, compact, structured blackcurrant and berry fruits here. Compressed and slightly reduced, but should develop nicely. 92/100

Château La Lagune Haut-Médoc 2021

70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot. Firm and structured with good acidity, showing some flesh to the berry and blackcurrant fruit, but finishing compact and firm. 92/100

Château de Lamarque Haut-Médoc 2021

30% Merlot, 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Petit Verdot. Fleshy with a touch of oak supporting the structured blackcurrant fruit. Has some grip here, with nice acidity. 91/100

Château La Tour de By Médoc 2021

60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Supple and quite classic with mid-weight blackcurrant and berry fruits together with a hint of oak and some nice structure. Very drinkable. 92/100

Château Angludet Margaux 2021

23% Merlot, 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Petit Verdot. Ripe sweet berry fruits here with some lushness, a touch of liqueur-like richness, and a sweet finish. 90/100

Château Brane-Cantenac Margaux 2021
74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc, 1% Carmenère, 1% Petit Verdot. The taste provides a gorgeous mingle of sweet plums, cherries, and blackberries. The well-built structure adds a delightful sweetness to the fruit palate. A score of 92 out of 100.

Château Cantenac Brown Margaux 2021
It comprises 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 27% Merlot. The wine portrays great concentration with its sweet berries and blackberries heart, harmonized with some spice and tar. It’s well balanced and extraordinarily appealing. Earned an impressive score of 93 out of 100.

Château Dauzac Margaux 2021
Comprising 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 30% Merlot. This wine delights with lovely sleek, ripe blackcurrant fruit. Along with a nice fruit core, it maintains some structure in the background, making it a fleshy and fun choice. Received a score of 92/100.

Château Desmirail Margaux 2021
45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot. This wine gives a nice weight with its sweet blackcurrant fruit mingled with some spicy foundation. The taste is bright and lively, and quite welcoming, landing an appreciative score of 92/100.

Château Giscours Margaux 2021
65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot. Juicy and vivid with some brightness to the sweet berry fruits. There’s a briskness and focus to this wine. 91/100

Château Kirwan Margaux 2021
73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot. Vivid with keen acidity supporting the fresh blackberry and blackcurrant fruit. The fruit is sharply in focus and it has nice purity. 93/100

Château Labégorce Margaux 2021
Bright and linear with keen acidity supporting the juicy black fruits. Has some structure too. Very fresh. 92/100

Château Lascombes Margaux 2021
55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Some oak evident on the nose, leading to a compact, unfurled palate with vivid black cherry and blackcurrant fruit. Could go the distance: there’s plenty of stuffing here. 93/100

Château Marquis de Terme Margaux 2021
64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Open sweet blackcurrant fruit nose, with nice aromatics. The palate is juicy with some olive and spice, as well as a bit of grip. Lovely fruit here. 94/100

Château Malescot Saint-Exupéry Margaux 2021
49% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot. Good structure and lovely fruit here. Quite compact, but there’s potential, with lovely blackcurrant fruit and fine supporting structure. 94/100

Château Prieuré-Lichine Margaux 2021
65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Fresh, well balanced and showing good concentration: everything is nicely in place and there’s a core of sweet, balanced blackcurrant fruit. Very appealing. 93/100

Château Rauzan-Gassies Margaux 2021
78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot. Nice bright blackcurrant fruit with some cherry notes, showing good balance and a sense of elegance. Classic and really nicely balanced. 94/100

Château Rauzan-Ségla Margaux 2021
75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot. This is juicy and bright with good purity and nice acidity sittinng under sweet blackcurrant and cherry fruit. Stylish. 93/100

Château Siran Margaux 2021
60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 11% Petit Verdot, 1% Cabernet Franc. Well structured with a slight savoury edge to the sweet berry and blackcurrant fruit. Has a compact form. 92/100

Château du Tertre Margaux 2021
64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot. Alluring ripe blackcurrant fruit with a hint of olive and cured meat, as well as some nice spiciness. Has ripeness but also balance, and a lovely texture to the fruit. Nice density and structure here: impressive. 95/100

Château Beychevelle Saint-Julien 2021
57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc. This is really good: there’s some ripe sweet berry and blackcurrant fruit, nice texture, and then supporting structure. It’s plush and enjoyable, but there’s some seriousness here. 94/100

Château Branaire-Ducru Saint-Julien 2021
66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 5.5% Petit Verdot, 6.5% Cabernet Franc. The wine is concentrated, having a sound structure and good acidity. It boasts a heart of sweet blackcurrant fruit and then some gravelly, chalky texture. Very stylish and quite serious. 94/100

Château Gloria Saint-Julien 2021
61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot, 14% Petit Verdot, 6% Cabernet Franc. This wine is firmly structured with good acidity, and a nice core of blackcurrant fruit. Although substantial, it remains very fresh with nice purity. 93/100

Château Gruaud Larose Saint-Julien 2021
84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc. The wine has a lovely chalky, gravelly underpinning to the ripe, sweet cherry and blackcurrant fruit complemented with a nice acid line. It has nice flesh, and should make for a good mid-term ager. 94/100

Château Lagrange Saint-Julien 2021
84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot. This wine has great balance: the fresh acidity keeps the sweet berry and blackcurrant fruit in focus, alongside some nice tannic structure. It has lovely depth. 94/100

Château Langoa Barton Saint-Julien 2021
61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc. Nicely aromatic. Bright, vivid palate with high acidity and some nice structure as well as pure red cherry and blackcurrant fruit. Vivid and with nice brightness and focus. 93/100

Château Léoville Barton Saint-Julien 2021
84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Good density to this, but also lots of freshness, with pure, focused blackcurrant fruit and some fine tannins in support. It’s very youthful and primary, and also very bright. Lots of potential. 95/100

Château Léoville Poyferré Saint-Julien 2021
68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot. There’s some meatiness here, a touch of oak, and also some subtle oxidative hints. Shows appealing black fruits. 89/100

Château Saint-Pierre Saint-Julien 2021
70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc, 7% Petit Verdot. Nice concentration here: juicy and bright with cherries, plums and blackberries. Has good acidity. 90/100

Château Talbot Saint-Julien 2021
71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Blackcurrant, blackberries and cherries, supported by some nice spicy notes. Has good density and a bit of flesh on the bones. Twist of briny olive on the finish. 93/100

Château Batailley Pauillac 2021
76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot. Nice freshness and balance here with good acidity under the compact blackberry and blackcurrant fruit. Stylish. 93/100

Château Clerc Milon Pauillac 2021
59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 1.5% Carmenère, 1.5% Petit Verdot. Ripe nose of sweet blackcurrants. The palate is fresh and linear with nice focused berry and cherry fruits. Classically styled and very good. 92/100

Château Croizet-Bages Pauillac 2021
66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot. Spicy savoury edge to the nose. Has some liquorice and cedar as well as fresh blackcurrant fruit. Nice weight. 92/100

Château D’ Armailhac Pauillac 2021

53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot. Juicy, stony and quite mineral with blackcurrant and black cherry fruit. Tight and compact. Nice balance. 91/100

Château Duhart-Milon Pauillac 2021

81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot. Supple and fresh with mid-weight cherry and plum fruit, some herby hints, and nice freshness. 90/100

Château Grand-Puy Ducasse Pauillac 2021

62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot. Fresh, vivid and juicy with red fruits, some herbs, good acidity and a touch of sour cherry on the finish. 91/100

Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste Pauillac 2021

85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot. Taut, fine and linear with some gravelly structure under the fresh berry fruits. Very bright with good acidity and structure. Linear and juicy, more red fruits than black. 93/100

Château Haut-Batailley Pauillac 2021
Firm and structured showing bright blackcurrant and berry fruits with some spice on the finish. There’s some herbiness here. 92/100

Château Lynch-Bages Pauillac 2021
67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot. There’s flesh here, with lovely sour cherry, plum and blackcurrant. Juicy but with some density to the fruit. Nice brightness and structure, finishing firm and fresh. 94/100

Château Lynch-Moussas Pauillac 2021
72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot. Concentrated but also quite firm and fresh, with black cherry and blackcurrant fruit and nice acidity. 92/100

Château Pichon Baron Pauillac 2021
88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot. Dense and structured with plenty of stuffing, showing intense blackcurrant and blackberry fruit with nice acidity. This is backward and unyielding, but it has the substance to age well in a classical style. 94/100

Château Cos Labory Saint-Estèphe 2021
33% Merlot, 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot. Ripe, intense blackcurrant fruit here with freshness and structure. Lots of weight, but also beautifully fresh. Nice finesse. 93/100

Château Ormes De Pez Saint-Estèphe 2021
40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 49% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot. Superb balance: fresh and a bit lean, but in a nice way, with lovely focused black cherry and blackcurrant fruit. Tannic and juicy with a nice bitterness on the finish. 93/100

Château Phélan Ségur Saint-Estèphe 2021
75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot. Concentrated and focused with firm structure sitting under compact blackcurrant fruit, finishing with acid and tannin. I like this, even though it’s tending to austerity. 94/100

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