Bordeaux 2021 En Primeur

Bordeaux En Primeur 2020

Bordeaux 2021 Vintage Overview

The 2021 vintage follows a succession of warm years with relatively benign conditions, some might say the Bordealais have had an easy ride of it! Lat year things were a bit different - Mother Nature had alternative plans.

Significant spring frosts devastated vineyards across Europe, with some regions in France experienced losses up to 90% of their crop. Bordeaux escaped with average losses being closer to a third and in many cases much less.

Late Spring warmed up  which kickstarted flowering on the vines (a key period in viticulture). The summer months were much cooler and wetter than previous years – this is one of the key impacts on the character of this vintage. A warmer Autumn was pivotal in helping the grapes reach full ripeness and maturity.  

Bordeaux 2021 Wine Characteristics

The slightly more challenging conditions means that there is a little more variation in quality and style this year. Terroir and decision-making were crucial as usual (along with a bit of luck). Whilst many have made comparisons with vintages such as 1996, 1999, 2008 and 2014; we are a little more apprehensive about singling out one single doppelganger. However, it is clear that the successful wines have something reminiscent of years-gone-by.

The reds are perfumed and elegant with great vibrancy. Many Left-Bank Chateaux have produced wines with a strong Cabernet character as the Merlot was the bigger challenge this year. The top Chateaux in St Estephe and Pauillac escaped some of the rains and have produced very fine wines indeed. Further South in Pessac Leognan, there is more consistent success amongst the producers. Over on the Right-bank there is further evidence that Merlot was suffering but, once again, great terroir shines through. Top St Emilion estates proved that modern viticulture and winemaking can alleviate many of the challenges thrown at them this year.

As expected, the whites and the sweet wines are exceptional this year. The cooler and damper conditions are perfect for these wines. Unfortunately the volumes are going to be extremely limited this year.

Overall, 2021 is a vintage which might not receive the same critical acclaim as recent years. The wines might not be blockbusters. However, these are wines more akin to older more ‘classic’ vintages and Bordeaux-lovers will find some excellent wines to enjoy. This is a vintage for those looking for lower alcohols, good freshness and purity of fruit.

 

How to order - please email sales@cadmanfinewines.co.uk
You can order by the bottle or the case. All wines are offered on an En Primeur basis. The prices quoted exclude duty, VAT and delivery. These costs will be invoiced once the wines have been shipped to the UK in the spring of 2024.

 

Château

Appellation   

Price/case (6x75cl) IB 

Price/bottle IB

Rating

Review

Chateau Batailley

5eme Grand Cru Classe

Paulliac

£165.00

£27.50

90 - 92

The 2021 Batailley shows promise, exhibiting aromas of cassis, plums, licorice, cigar wrapper, loamy soil and dark Chocolate, followed by a medium to full-bodied, layered and charming palate built around ripe powdery tannins. Supple and giving, it will offer a broad drinking window.

William Kelley - The Wine Advocate

Chateau Duhart-Milon

4eme Grand Cru Classe

 

Pauillac

£336.00

£56.00

90 - 92

'The 2021 Duhart-Milon is a potent, brooding wine. Dark fruit, herbs, lixorice and incense fill out the layers nicely. The oak still needs time to come together, but that is what elevage is for. The 2021 is a serious Duhart'

Antonio Galloni - Vinous

Chateau Leoville Las Cases

2eme Grand Cru Classe

St Julien

£1,020.00

£170.00

95 - 97

'One of the wines of the vintage, the 2021 Léoville Las Cases is reminiscent of a hypothetical blend of the 1999 and 1996—only better. Offering up incipiently complex aromas of cassis, plums and dark berries mingled with loamy soil, cigar wrapper and exotic spices, it's full-bodied, layered and multidimensional, with superb amplitude and concentration, velvety tannins, lively acids and a long, penetrating finish. Uniting classicism and charm, it exemplifies how a great terroir, exigent agronomy and meticulous winemaking can deliver greatness even in a less propitious vintage. It's a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Cabernet Franc and a mere 5% Merlot this year, checking in at 13.2% alcohol.'
William Kelley - The Wine Advocate

Chateau Leoville Barton

2eme Grand Cru Classe

St Julien

£336.00

£56.00

93 - 95

'The 2021 Léoville-Barton was picked from 27 September until 7 October, matured in 60% new oak. The alcohol is 13.12%. It has a clean and pure bouquet with blackberry, bilberry, cedar and hints of shucked oyster shell: focused and very well delineated, classic in style. The palate has a smooth and cohesive entry, very well-knit with beautifully integrated oak. Crisp acidity with the perfect amount of tension on the classically-styled finish, this Léoville Barton demonstrates the advantages of their brand new cellar (even though the reception was not finished in time!) I cannot see any reason not to own a few bottles of this in your cellar..'

Neal Martin - Vinous

Chateau Langoa Barton

3eme Grand Cru Classe

St Julien

£180.00

£30.00

92 - 94

'The first vintage vinified in the Barton family's new winery, the 2021 Langoa Barton is immensely promising, offering up aromas of cassis, cigar wrapper, loamy soil and black truffle, followed by a medium to full-bodied, velvety and seamless palate that's deep and complete, its vibrant core of fruit framed by ripe tannins and lively acids. It's a blend of 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Tasted three times.'

William Kelley - The Wine Advocate

Chateau Cantemerle

5eme Grand Cru Classe

Haut Medoc

£108.00

£18.00

90 - 91

'The 2021 Cantemerle is a very strong effort in a challenging year, offering up aromas of blackcurrants and plums mingled with hints of spice box, black truffle and loamy soil. Medium to full-bodied, fleshy and charming, it's supple and succulent, with a generous core of fruit and a saline finish. It's sure to number among the sleepers of the vintage.'

William Kelley - The Wine Advocate

Chateau Potensac

Cru Borgeois

Medoc

£99.00

£16.50

90 - 92

'The 2021 Potensac is beguiling. Perhaps it is the high amount of Cabernet Franc (23%) in the blend this year. The 2021 exudes refinement from the very first taste. Rose petal, spice, crushed red berry fruit and sweet pipe tobacco all open effortlessly..'

Antonio Galloni - Vinous

Chateau Pavie

1er Grand Cru Classe A

St Emilion

£1,410.00

£235.00

93 - 95

'The 2021 Pavie was picked at 33hL/ha from 28 September until 12 October and matured in 75% new oak, the rest one-year. Team Pavie decided to wait to pick the Cabernet until after the rains just prior to harvest. This is clean and precise on the nose, the Cabernet components (48% of the blend) imparting graphite and light cedar aromas. The palate is medium-bodied with fine grain tannins that frame layered limestone-infused black fruit, quite vibrant and conveying a sense of energy towards the finish..'

Neal Martin - Vinous

Chateau Cheval Blanc

1er Grand Cru Classe A

 

St Emilion

£2,340.00

£390.00

95 - 97

'The 2021 Cheval Blanc was picked between September 22 and October 14, and for the first time in many years there is a higher proportion of Cabernet Franc. This has a lovely bouquet, very clean and precise, featuring black cherry, wild mint, sous-bois and orange sorbet, all vivacious and very focused. The palate is medium-bodied with fine-grained tannins, quite structured and very linear and strict. A bit like Ausone, this is an uncompromising Cheval Blanc, very saline and marine-influenced. While not as flattering as the 2020, it will appeal more to those who prefer a cerebral Cheval Blanc. One of the stars of the Right Bank in this challenging growing season.'

Neal Martin - Vinous

Alternative bottle sizes (e.g. halves or magnums) are available subject to a small surcharge; please advise when ordering. For any wines that you are interested in that we have not listed below, please contact us on the email above. We will provide regular updates and news as the prices are revealed to us, however advanced knowledge of your wishes or needs will help us.

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