chateau gruaud larose 2eme cru classe, saint-julien 2017
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A barrel sample made up of 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31.5% Merlot and 1.5% Cabernet Franc, the medium to deep garnet-purple colored 2017 Gruaud Larose offers a lifted nose of violets and kirsch over a core of cassis, baked plums and black raspberries with hints of cigar box, menthol and dark chocolate. Medium-bodied, elegant and very finely structured with ripe tannins and lovely freshness, it has loads of vibrant red and black fruits with a mineral-laced finish.
This wine is firmly structured, dwelling on wood and extraction at this stage. There is enough weight to this concentrated wine that the fruit should develop, even if slowly.
Well-built, with plum and blackberry fruit that is very fresh, thanks to bright acidity. Light floral, anise and graphite notes add range. A savory streak keeps the finish going.
The 2017 Gruaud Larose, which was bottled June 2019, is a little smudged on the nose compared to some of its peers, and I would say, compared to the nascent 2018. Attractive brambly red fruit mixed with cigar humidor and attic aromas that just require more precision and intensity. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin and a fine bead of acidity. What it lacks is mid-palate weight, rendering this an easy-going Gruaud Larose that will not have the longevity of vintages either side. That said, it is a perfectly decent Claret.
Rocking notes of spice box, forest floor, cedary herbs, and ample red and black fruits emerge from the 2017 Château Gruaud Larose. With medium-bodied richness, nicely integrated acidity, and moderate tannin, it’s a classic, balanced, impeccably made wine from this terrific Saint-Julien estate.