Château Larrivet Haut-Brion, Pessac-Leognan 2004 (12.5%)
In appearance, this has a very deep, opaque, dark ruby core with a narrow rim, just showing some evolution. The nose is clean and incisive, initially with sweet cedar, cigar box and spice followed by blackberries, blackcurrant leaf and dark old fashioned liquorice – a classic red Bordeaux nose.
On the palate, it has a seductively silky texture and smoothness followed by juicy, vibrant, lingering acidity and refined but firmly textured tannins. In the middle there are flavours of blackcurrant, liquorice and a hint of leafiness which gives it an edge. It has lovely weight and balance.
What I really love about this wine is the seductive silkiness of the texture combined with a strong, characterful backbone of tannins and acidity – beautiful but powerful at the same time in an understated and elegant way. I have long admired the wines of Pessac-Leognan for their elegance and beautiful balance and weight.
This wine is £24.49 from Waitrose and worth every penny. I make no apologies for including a more expensive wine in the review because I think it really delivers on quality. Besides, if you go into any bar or pub you can easily end up paying as much or more (once they’ve added a double or triple mark-up) for a very ordinary wine.
This wine is over-delivering on quality so I recommend you buy it; cook something delicious such as roast lamb or good quality beef and enjoy it over Easter.
© 2010 – 2012, Susan Hulme MW. All rights reserved.