2018 Petit Ducru 90VM/90WA/91JD
Saint Julien, Bordeaux
$37.99 on 6+ (code: 6saves3)
Grape varietal: 60% Merlot / 40% Cabernet Sauvignon
Production area: Saint-Julien estate vineyards across the D2 from the estate which previously supplied the Lalande-Borie fruit to that wine
Vineyard exposure: Sits on a gentle rise, at 45 meters (150 feet) above sea level only 25 kilometers from the Atlantic. When the wind blows from the west you can smell the ocean, adding a potential touch of iodine to the wine’s flavors
Soil type: light gravel and clay soils up top and a gravel and clay-limestone mix underneath
My tasting note: Deep ruby with a dark ruby red edge in color. Aromas and flavors of lead pencil, bing cherry, currants, creme d' casssis, coffee, licorice. The palate carries exceptionally well, ripe tannins, a lot of flavor without a lot of weight this has an elegance to it. But make no mistake, this is densely flavored with a very long finish. This punches way over is price!
90 pts Vinous Media (Galloni)
The 2018 Le Petit Ducru de Ducru-Beaucaillou, to give it its full name, was still "Lalande-Borie" when I tasted it from barrel. Aged for 12 months in 30% new oak, it has a pretty bouquet, less precocious than I remarked back then, with brambly black fruit, crushed rock and a light wilted iris scent. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannins, the oak now nicely entwined, whereas before I thought that it might take 3–4 years to fully integrate. There is ample ripeness, though this remains classic in style, possessing fine delineation and just the right amount of sapidity to urge you back for another sip. Drinking window: 2023 - 2038
90 pts Robert Parker Wine Advocate
A newcomer to the Ducru-Beaucaillou stable, Le Petit Ducru wine was formerly called Lalande-Borie. It is essentially a third wine, coming from part of the vineyard of Ducru-Beaucaillou. The 2018 Le Petit Ducru is a blend of 60% Merlot and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon. It was aged for 12 months in barrel, in one-third new oak. It has an alcohol of 14.5%. Deep garnet-purple colored, it leaps from the glass with wonderfully pure scents of black and red currants, black raspberries and mulberries plus suggestions of tobacco leaf, bay leaves and fertile loam. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers mouth-filling juicy black fruits flavors with soft tannin's and just enough freshness, finishing with an herbal lift.
91 pts Jeb Dunnuck
The Merlot-dominated 2018 Le Petit Ducru De Ducru-Beaucaillou (there's 40% Cabernet Sauvignon) is another dense ruby/purple-hued effort offering lots of cedar, green tobacco, damp earth, and darker currant-like fruits to go with a medium to full-bodied, beautifully textured mouthfeel. It has ripe tannins and plenty of baby fat that hides solid underlying structure. It's well worth seeking out and is going to put a smile on your face any time over the coming decade as well.
Of all the smaller Bordeaux wines from Bruno Borie, Petit Ducru is a selection of fruit derived from only St-Julien vineyards. A nod also to the history of the estate, specifically to one of the former owners, Bertrand Ducru (1770-1829), a brilliant and worldly merchant from the Bearn region of France, situated along the flanks of the western Pyrenees mountains. Powerful and well established, he bought the property in 1797 (16 Vendémiaire, year 6) and added his surname to that of the site, which then became “Ducru-Beaucaillou”. He hired the architect, Paul Abadie, graduate of the acclaimed Ecole des Beaux-Arts de Paris, to enhance the elegant Directory-period chartreuse. But above all, he invested heavily in the vineyards and the cellar. The wines quickly rose to the summit of the appellation and Ducru-Beaucaillou obtained unanimous recognition from the Place de Bordeaux, which later consecrated it with a place in the 1855 classification.