The 1982 vintage in Bordeaux changed the wine world as well as changed my life. It was the first vintage I tasted from barrel as a young wine writer working for the American magazine The Wine Spectator, and I was amazed how gorgeous the quality of a young red could be from barrel.

I remember the first barrel samples I tasted during the summer of 1983 at Chateau Prieure-Lichine with the late wine author and vintner Alexis Lichine. The wines were so fruity with soft and rich tannins. They seemed too drinkable for a young wine, yet Lichine who had over forty years of experience tasting young wines told me the wines were “exceptional” and “some of the greatest young wines ever produced.”

He had invited some of his winemaking pals from the Medoc to a lunch at his chateau following the tasting. And he kept telling them, which included such names as Bruno Prats (then Cos d’Estournel), Anthony Barton (Leoville-Barton) and Jean-Eugene Borie (Ducru-Beaucaillou) that young writers like myself were the future of the region and that they had to make me understand that 1982 was a great year. He was upset that the New York Times and some other magazines had come out saying that the new vintage was not outstanding do to it seemingly early drinkability.

It was also a time an American lawyer in his mid-30s began writing full time on wine, creating a newsletter called The Wine Advocate. Many say Robert Parker built his career on advocating the greatness of Bordeaux’s 1982 vintage, although he obviously did much more.

More importantly, 1982 vintage marked a big change in the way Bordeaux was produced. It underlined fruit and ripe tannins in reds as well as a slightly higher level of alcohol and lower, or less strong acidity – higher pH. This is what gave the wines such wonderful texture, or drinkability in their youth.


It was a big change from most vintages before 1982 that produced hard and tannic wines that needed years, even decades to soften. The 1982 vintage became a model vintage for red Bordeaux in the future, and arguably for the wine world at large. Think of all the fruit-forward reds that are produced today in the world – for better or for worse. Alcohols are at least two, sometimes three or four degrees higher. Tannins are stronger yet riper. And natural acidities are lower. Chapitalization – adding sugar to the fermenting grape must to increase alcohol – seems a thing of the past.

“Young wines are so drinkable now,” said Alexander Thienpont, the winemaker of Pomerol’s Vieux-Chateau-Certan and Le Pin. The latter made its reputation on early drinkability. “It’s what people expect in a modern wine today.”

I believe some of the change with the 1982 was due to the “California” like growing conditions the Bordelias spoke of at the time. The summer was extremely hot and sunny. The harvest was warm and mostly clear of precipitation. Grape yields were high with many of the best wine properties making more wine per hectare than set by French authorities. In fact, the late Jean Pierre Moueix of Chateau Petrus always told me that the 1982 vintage would have been at the same level as the 1945 or 1949 vintage if yields had been lower.

Yet, the experience of the growing season and harvest in 1982 made a whole new generation of winemakers in the region understand the importance of picking grapes later and riper. They understood early on when wine critics such as Parker and myself as well as members of the US wine trade enthused so much about the 1982 reds from barrel. This also was the beginning of the popularization of barrel scores used to purchase wines.


The US market was the biggest market to buy top notch Bordeaux with the 1982 vintage. It began a decade of intense buying of Bordeaux in the states with consumers buying first growth and second growth as well as Pomerols and St. Emilion. Americans regaled in the wine’s juiciness and beauty. They also made a shit load of money if they held on to the wines in sold them later. For example, most of the first growths sold for about $40 a bottle in 1983 as futures and some are now as much as $3,500 a bottle. Prices for 1982 are down slightly now,  but the price appreciation over 30 years is impressive after 30 years.

So is the quality of the wines still for the most part. I am lucky enough to drink top 1982 on a regular basis, and the best ones never cease to amaze me with their generous and complex fruit and polished, ripe tannins. Bottle variation can be a problem because many of the top names have been bought and sold and stored all over the world, but on a whole it is a treat to drink a great 1982.  And the vintage always reminds me of my beginnings in the wine world


James Suckling has been writing about and tasting wine for over 30 years. He worked for 28 years as a senior editor of the American wine magazine The WIne Spectator,  and in July 2010 he left to start his own website www. jamessuckling.com and wine events company. He also is wine editor of the Asia Tatler group with luxury magazines through the region including Hong Kong, China, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Philippines, and Malaysia. His specialty is Italy and Bordeaux, but he enjoys tasting and discovering wines from all over the world. His most recent great wine adventure was tasting 57 vintages of Chateau Petrus in the Hamptons, but he also just enjoyed sharing great Barolos from Bruno Giacosa, Roberto Vorezio, and Giacomo Conterno with wine lovers in Seoul.

by James Sucking



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Fine spring weather resulted in a rapid fruit-set, followed by a textbook summer and a warm start to autumn. However there was little green harvesting at the time, so the resulting crop was huge. Pinot Noir is very sensitive to high production and, despite the ideal growing conditions, this has affected the character of the vintage. The red wines were light and offered immediate drinking pleasure in their early life; the whites did much better because Chardonnay is less sensitive to high cropping levels. The best climats could still provide some surprises.

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One of the decade’s best vintages, which can be excellently enjoyed already now. The winter was cold and the spring cool. The cold weather moved the start of the growth season and enabled the vines to avoid spring frosts. The inflorescences, which bloomed in June, enjoyed perfect conditions. The warm and sunny weather continued through summer all the way until early September, when refreshing and needed rains arrived in the area. They saved the grapes from overmaturing. The result was an excellent vintage, which in addition to being high-quality was quantitatively one of the biggest harvests ever. The vintage was favorable especially for blanc de blancs. Stylistically, the wines are giving, heavy and rich in nuances. They are now at an excellent age, but can still endure maturing 5–7 years on the average. 

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Weather Conditions An odd year with an extremely wet winter and spring. Vines set a larger than normal crop. After a cool June and July, the summer warmed up and vines were working hard to mature the huge crop. Any attempts to proclaim a miracle vintage were dampened by periodic rains throughout the harvest weeks. Two rain storms diluted the berries on the over-cropped vines. Those who thinned early won out. Those who gambled and waited for better days to arrive in mid-October fared well. The style of those successes tends toward ripe, but tannic and tight Cabernets in their youth. The best tended to age slowly. Most Merlot was picked before the rains and because the crop was large they lacked complexity and longevity. For the two reds, non-irrigated and/or hillside vineyards produced the better the vintage. A few Cabernets were in fine shape by the new millennium.

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Vintage Report

 Champagne Vintage Report by Salon /  Late departure of vegetation, although with extremely favourable weather conditions, the vines developed without a hitch. For all varieties, emergence of very fine clusters. Although the vines had not produced in two years, they gave their very best. Good ripeness of the harvest thanks to superb September sunshine. Harvesting commenced on 17th and 20th September depending on the variety and vineyard. The Chardonnays are well balanced, very fine and elegant.

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Vintage Report

Australia / Barossa Vintage Report / Above average rains in the 1981 winter provided an excellent start to the season with soil moisture levels high and irrigation dams full. A very even budburst and strong spring growth was followed by a mild early summer. A very hot January with six consecutive days over 40°C was followed by a cool autumn. The mild vintage produced medium bodied, stylish reds with good fruit and soft tannins and outstanding Rieslings. Some winemakers consider this to be the best vintage of the 1980s.

In 1982 there were 7,974 hectares of vineyards in Barossa and 62,966 tonnes of wine grapes were crushed in that vintage.

The pre-vintage year was remembered for its drought conditions and extreme cold weather with five consecutive days below zero from June 4 to 9 causing severe frosts.

The vintage led to considerable grape surplus (estimated at 9,000 to 10,000 tonnes of mainly red varieties). Vine pulling began in the Barossa with 400 to 500ha removed while top working of Grenache and Mourvèdre continued.

John Vickery returned to the Barossa after eight years at Rouge Homme, Coonawarra to manage Chateau Leonay.

Tollana erected a $2 million continuous still, fully enclosed in a building, for the production of wine and grain spirit.

Neil and Lorraine Ashmead launched the first vintage of Elderton Wines, on their old Nuriootpa vineyard which was originally planted by Samuel Elderton Tolley in 1894.

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1982 versus 1990 Bordeaux /When you get an invitation to a comparative tasting of all premier crus from the two great vintages 1982 and 1990 you drop everything and clear your diary. 1982 and 1990 represent the beginning and end of  maybe the greatest era in the history of Bordeaux. In these nine years there were only two vintages that could be seen as disappointments – 1984 and 1987. It could rightly be stated that the period from 1945 to 1953 produced similarly great wines – this is true for the top wines, but the overall quality was reaching new heights during the 1980s.

1982 was a milestone for the Bordeaux trade.

It came after the difficult decade of the 1970s. A decade marked through the Bordeaux crisis with the collapse of the 1972 bubble, the oil crisis and rapid inflation. On top of this there were a series of disappointing vintages.

The financial markets had stabilised by the time that the 1982 were offered in the spring of 1983 and there was a large new group of potential wine buyers. There had been an influx of new magazines about wine and good living and the public was ready to spend money. The American Dollar was high against a weak French Franc and most of all – the wines were spectacular.

There were several reasons for this.

An early, even flowering, a warm but unspectacular summer and most of all, thanks to an exceptionally hot period at the end of August and the first half of September. It was this heat that made it possible for this record size harvest to, not only to fully ripen, but also to concentrate the fruit.

The harvest started on September 14th and was finished before heavy rains commenced on October 2nd.

Another reason for the succes of the vintage was that most châteaux had invested in their cellars and were able to work such a large and hot harvest. One was now able to control the fermentation temperatures better than in earlier hot vintages like 1947.

The grapes produced wines with such a high natural alcohol that chaptalization became unnecessary, they showed deep colour, high and unusually soft tannin levels, a better acidity than at first feared and most of all – great concentration of fruit. The media hype was great, particularly thanks to the advent of new wine magazines - this was the vintage that cemented Robert Parkers reputation. The prices rose rapidly and have never looked back since. I remember all premier crus (including Pétrus) being offered to end consumers for around 50 Euro en-primeur in 1983.

The scene when the 1990 vintage came along was quite different. There was a surplus of very good to great wine on the market – for the first time there was talk about three great vintages following after one another. This lead to most châteaux lowering their prices about 20% from their 1989 prices, even though the quality was outstanding.

There had been a steady increase in prices during the 1980s, but they were now more or less back to the opening prices of the 1982s.

It was again a record harvest, but because of most châteaux now having introduced a „second wine“ and being more selective regarding quality there was actually less wine being bottled as „Grand Vin“ than in 1982.

I have been following both these vintages from a comparatively early age as they were both precocious and easy to drink from the start.

The top wines are spectacular from both vintages, but the overall quality is much higher in 1990. Here the wines were equally successfull on both sides of the river and even minor châteaux produced something special.

I have always found most 1982s from the right bank to be too alcoholic and lacking structure and many are ageing rapidly now.

The host of the tasting was the German wine collector Hans-Peter Frericks, who sensibly prefers to present his wines with food during an extended luncheon. There is also enough time to taste and discuss each flight without any time pressure – so much nicer than to hurry through several flights with nothing more than a few bisquits to nibble on.

The wines were served vintage by vintage but I prefer to discuss them château by château.

So, which vintage would claim victory?

It was easy in the case of Château Mouton Rothschild to pick the winner. Their 1990 has always been the disappointment of the vintage. It is now maturing rapidly and should be drunk or, even better, sold to someone who only cares for the name on the label. The 1982,  on the other hand, was always seen as one of the stars of the vintage. Deep coloured with great concentration of upfront fruit. Good, fresh acidity and a long finish. The only thing that worries me a little is the massive tannins still present.

The 1990 Château Lafite Rothschild is a lovely and charming wine, full of warmth and style. A classic, elegant Lafite. It is ready to drink now and will bring pleasure for some time to come. The 1982 Lafite is The Superstar in the eyes of the Chinese and this has lead to the wine reaching new record prices at every auction in Hong Kong and elsewhere. The wine is very good – more concentrated than the 1990 and still very youthful. I would call this a draw.

1990 Château Haut Brion is one of my favourite wines – a heady nose of tobacco, spices and leather. Lovely, soft fruit and ready to drink now, but don’t get fooled – this will age forever, just like the 1959 and 1961 Haut Brions. The 1982 Haut Brion is also a beautiful, charming wine, offering great drinking pleasure, but it does not quite have the exotic charm of the 1990.

Drink soon as I don’t see it improving with age. Victory for 1990.

The bottle of 1990 Château Margaux was not a good bottle – the wine showed a mature colour and lacked the usual structure and freshness. This is normally a good, soft wine, so I assume that this bottle had been stored under too warm conditions. The 1982 was also now quite mature with soft fruit and needs drinking soon. This time a win for the 1982, otherwise I would call this a draw.

Château Latour is usually the wine needing longest of all premier crus to show its true class.

1990 was unusually soft and untypical for a Latour at an early age. It is a very good wine with soft tannins and great balance. Château Latour produced, for me, the greatest of all 1982s. A fantastic, mindblowing wine. A combination of classic Pauillac style and backbone with spectacularly concentrated, sensous fruit. A joy to drink now and for the next hundred years.

Another win for 1982.

Both 1990 and 1982 Château Ausone showed mature colour, nose and fruit. Both quite pleasant to drink but not really up to premier cru standard in either vintage.

A draw.

I have often given the 1990 Château Cheval Blanc a perfect score in blind tastings. This is one of the most hedonistic wines I have ever had the pleasure to drink. I have compared it to Sophia Loren in the 1960s – soft, round, voluptous, sexy and not a hard edge anywhere in sight. This is the uncrowned successor to Cheval Blanc’s legendary ´47.

I have, on the other hand, never quite understood the ravings about Cheval Blanc’s 1982. A very overrated wine for me – too alcoholic and over-ripe. Always lacking the structure necessary to be really good. Not bad, but certainly nowhere as good as its reputation. Clear victory for 1990.

1990 Château Pétrus is a fabulous monument of a wine. The deepest colour of all. Still quite closed, but a giant waiting to come out and blow us all away.Very, very long finish. A great wine! The 1982 Pétrus is a wine with a fantastic reputation that, similar to the Cheval Blanc, never really has impressed me. Soft, mature and attractive but lacking the structure of a great wine.

Clear victory for 1990.

The luncheon was rounded off in style with Château d'Yquem from both vintages.

1982 was a difficult vintage for Sauternes being caught by the copious rains of October. Lightweight and not really very good. The 1990 is an opulent, soft and forward Yquem. Attractive and ready to drink now. 1990 scores again.

by Jan-Erik Paulson

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The BEST of BORDEAUX 1982 VINTAGE - Just tasted by us.


Sociando Mallet 1982

A beautiful showing from this eminent “cru bourgeois” that on the nose has a lovely mixture of blackcurrants, minerals and bell peppers. It opens gently, some smokiness, plenty of dark fruit, and very good concentration. It lacks a little heft at the mid palate, but rallies with floral notes and red cherries, for a fairly silky and slightly savory finish that has considerable composure. The wine is probably about 5 years from its zenith still from this showing. It is a highly attractive wine that has evolved impressively. 91 Points (3 votes for wine of the flight, 3 second place votes)


Chateau La Lagune 1982

A slightly more Burgundian bouquet, cherries, some game, earth and plums, ripe acids that are well integrated, it opens with some lushness that is well restrained, and indeed the tannins throughout are quite plush. You get some licorice and forest floor at the mid palate, some black truffles, and with the dish it particularly showed its vigor. There is pepper and some spiciness on the finish, it is a wine that will probably stay at this level for another 5 years, possibly longer, but has likely plateaued.  90 Points (5 votes for wine of the flight, 2 second place votes)


Chateau Haut Batailley 1982

A curious combination of olives and some toffee notes, along with the fruit confection on the nose, it opens with good texture, surprisingly lively acidity, smooth and dry tannins, nice lift at the mid palate, currants and cherries emerge as it moves to the finale, with a smoky elegance. There is the Bordeaux graphite throughout this wine, which remains structurally sound, but it is definitely a “food wine” and by itself, a tad flat footed in the glass over time. I do not see this improving any. Yet I did not detect on this showing any evidence of decline either. 88-89 Points (3 votes for wine of the flight, 1 second place vote)



Chateau Lagrange 1982

Some tea and cinnamon along with some ripe berries characterize the somewhat recalcitrant nose. Somewhat drying out on the palate, particularly at the mid palate, though there are some attractive notes of chocolate, figs, and some cherries. It was relatively elegant on the fairly sweet finish. This is a good wine for Lagrange (though the ’83 from this property is stronger), and certainly at, or possibly just past its peak. 87 Points (1 vote for wine of the flight, one second place vote)


Chateau Leoville Poyferre 1982

Here is a wine of great refinement on the nose, floral, with mineral and meaty notes, harmoniously blending. There are opening notes of cassis, blackcurrant, and red fruit, with lovely rounded sensuous vivacity here. Despite the richness evident by the mid palate, there is compelling balance and elegance throughout. More black fruit, some chestnut perhaps, crisp tannins and wonderful grip here too. This is a life affirming wine, with plenty of life and further development ahead. It is a joy to enjoy today. 93 Points+ (1 vote for wine of the flight, five second place votes)


Chateau Leoville Las Cases 1982

This has always been an obdurate wine, reluctant to yield up its underlying charms.  It seems to finally be relenting, offering aromas of licorice, black cherries, and nuts. Some mushrooms and truffles on the opening, it has relatively low acidity, with evolving intensity and superb length. Blackberries and plums towards the finish of a wine that still seems to be struggling against its tannic bonds, and seeking to develop the multi-faceted personality its underlying elements seem to suggest lies ahead. If it stops brooding and starts to beam, which is perhaps just starting to suggest itself, this wine will readily climb several notches. 94 Points (3 votes for wine of the flight, two second place votes)


 Chateau Gruaud Larose 1982

Just a beautiful wine, herbs, red cherries, and spices, swirl appealingly on the bouquet. Throughout there are enticing layers of complexity, green olives, plum tart, cherry, tobacco, smooth tannins, and exquisitely integrated acidity. There are peppers and chocolate on the mid palate, great concentration and a sexy silkiness that keeps luring you on. There are truffles and a wonderful core of fruit that lap at the palate on the enduring, pronounced, slightly saline accented, vivacious finish. This is a remarkable wine, with plenty of life ahead of it. 96 Points (7 votes for wine of the flight, 3 second place votes)



Chateau Duhart-Milon 1982

There are plums, flowers and spices on the nose here, this is a nicely rounded wine, with sweet fruit and some tobacco as it opens, firm supporting acidity, cassis and flowers on the mid palate, it is a reasonably luscious and fleshy wine, given Duhart’s more typically statuesque contours. But that trademark framework is still unabashedly present, if more behind the scenes than is typical, as the wine moves toward a nice finish, with thyme, fig and good persistence. This likely has at least a good decade ahead of it. 91 Points (1 vote for wine of the flight, 2 second place votes)


Chateau  Lynch Bages 1982

Flowers, spicy red berries, some kirsch on the nose, this wine while not having the enduring delineation of the ’89, has compelling balance and precision to it. There is a good core of sweet fruit, flavors of soy, some flowers and earth underlying everything. The black fruit swirls with some tobacco notes at the mid palate, the tertiary fruit and pepper are quite expressive as it builds to a savory, rich finale. I would drink this over the next decade. 92 Points (2 votes for wine of the flight, and 4 second place votes)


Chateau Pichon Lalande 1982

Here is a spellbinding wine, soaring from the glass with aromas of currants, smoked meat, truffles, oregano perhaps, this wine is wrapped in nuanced, alluring velvet. Chocolate, earth and cassis dance together at the mid palate, and it radiates a freshness and depth that are just exuberant. Here the Merlot-Cabernet partnership has flourished unforgettably, with cherries, red berries, pepper all beating the drums on the lavish, lingering finish. It is one of the wines of the vintage and is going from strength to strength. 97 Points (8 votes for wine of the flight, one second place vote)


Chateau Grand Puy Lacoste 1982

This has currants and plum on the nose, blueberries and cedar then adding to the mix. For years this has been a glacially evolving wine, again like the Las Cases, might it be reluctantly coming into its own? It is today a medium bodied wine with supple tannins, nice acidity, reasonably muscular, through still introspective. It has unfurling depth, and nice length, but in this flight, given its current diffidence, it lacked a distinctive appeal. It should be at its best if it evolves in the direction it seems to be hinting at, in another 2-5 years. 93 Points (2 second place votes)



Chateau Beychevelle 1982

This was an enchanting, quasi-Burgundian wine, with lyrical grace. Cherries, smoke, sea salt, blackberries, violets are all abundant in the bouquet. There is ripe fruit, some of that ’82 richness, but still the Beychevelle breeding and grace are evident throughout. The tannins are robust but understated; there are layers of evolving complexity evident at the mid palate, and a silky, nicely delineated finish of admirable length and marvelous grip. This is a wine I believe that will actually come even more fully into its own in the coming 5-7 years and continue to blossom for quite some time thereafter. 95 Points+ (8 votes for wine of the flight and 3 second place votes)


Chateau Calon Segur 1982

Black cherries, tobacco, cassis, some incense all abound on the bouquet. On the opening, the acidity frames the wine well, the plums are evident, black truffles on the mid palate, good complexity, fairly vibrant with emphatic red fruit emerging towards a nicely textured, spice cake accented finish. It is a vibrant wine, but didn’t on this showing have quite the vitality or panache expected – there does seem to be quite some bottle variation with this wine. A few weeks back, I had tasted a livelier, more evidently red fruit laced expression of this wine, and it was clearly several points higher. 91 Points+ (1 vote for wine of the flight)


Chateau Montrose 1982

The bottle was slightly off, lacked most of the flavor profile. But then, several past experiences haven’t been luminous either, with a tired bouquet, a balanced but not particularly rich or inviting palate. Nothing wrong, but nothing particularly attractive either. I can’t say I would go looking for a better representative of this wine. NR


Chateau Cos d’Estournel 1982

This has a lovely sensual bouquet, dark cherries, chestnuts, mushrooms and plums. The wine is harmonious, balanced, showing great typicity of the terroir and for the vintage. It has the tannic backbone, seamless acidity, elegant concentration, that the best 1982’s display. Some black cherry and fig on the mid palate, it builds towards a full, spice flecked, long, attractive finish that leaves you yearning for more. It is particularly accomplished with food, and the Bison and Foie couldn’t have been a better foil. This is probably best enjoyed (as you sense the very slightest fraying at the edges, at least from this bottle) in the coming decade. 95 Points+ (3 votes for wine of the flight, 6 second place votes)



Chateau Margaux 1982

No longer in the shadow of the lovely 1983, this is a charming Margaux, finally throwing off its fetters. There is potpourri, violets, truffles, and some chocolate on the ravishing nose. An enticing sweet opening, some orange, blackberry and cherry, exotic spice and some licorice emerge by the mid palate. The tannins are sweet and supple, this wine is silky, and is developing ever more verve and expression. Some red berries emerge again, as the suave, engaging, fruit-laced finish, washes over the palate with quintessential Margaux mellifluence. This is a beguiling wine very much in the ascendance still. 95 Points+ (2 second place votes)


Chateau Haut Brion 1982

Normally a charming, compelling, radiant wine, on this showing, while not tainted or corked, it seemed to lack some stuffing. Some muted dark plums and smokiness on the palate, it lacked the urbane full bodied composure that is usually so attractive about this wine. The ’82 HB has gone from being a lighter 1982 in its trajectory, to filling out attractively. Today’s showing I feel compelled not to score, because it seems so atypical of the usual terroir expression, tannic structure and graceful contours of this wine. NR


Chateau La Mission Haut Brion 1982

Black truffles, fall flowers and autumn leaves all paradoxically swirl together on the nose here, then some marzipan. The opening is enchanting with fine and beautifully poised tannins. This was not the strongest showing I’ve seen from this wine, but it was still lovely. It bespeaks Graves with real gravitas, there are also some opening Pomerol notes here, that are shed past the mid palate, and then it mobilizes its impressive structure, as the fruit core leads the surge to a generous, harmonious finale. A few points off from what it can be in this showing, but a wine that seems eager for decades of wonderful drinking ahead. 94 Points (2 second place votes)


Chateau Latour 1982 (ex Chateau)

Just a superlative wine, it opens bountifully on the nose with plum, truffle, black pepper, mocha and tobacco. What hits you next is the sheer balance and aplomb of this graceful, amazingly structured, cassis and sandalwood-laced beauty on the palate. The tannins are ripe, but just part of the overall package, and become ever silkier past the mid palate, harmonizing with the intense concentration of the wine. Then blackberry, boysenberry, a seamless texture that simply envelops the palate and grows in elegant, focused power as it unfurls its treasures in the glass. This is a perfect wine, with boundless potential ahead. 100 Points (9 votes for wine of the flight, one second place vote)


Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1982

The bouquet is transfixing, coffee, cassis, licorice, macerated cherries. It is a monumental wine in the making, just not yet at a peak as Latour clearly is. It has the ingredients of greatness, and displays many of the attributes already. Crème de cassis, mint, dark fruit, tobacco lace the palate, then as it reaches the mid palate, blackberry and blueberry framed by well marshaled acidity, it then rallies majestically as it heads towards the finish. Though it still is a little tightly coiled in terms of its full expression, the finish is full bodied, layered, complex, even a tad flamboyant, awaiting just some additional blossoming for its full range of expressiveness to realize the perfection that seems in store. 97 Points+ (2 votes for wine of the flight, 5 second place votes)


Chateau Lafite 1982

A vexing and perplexing wine, you want it to be so much more, to express its terroir, to show flashes of the ’59 genius. There is an alluring bouquet of currants, cedar, marzipan and some tobacco. There are dusty tannins, and it seems to lack the depth or complexity of Lafite at its best, or the concentrated appeal of the best 82’s. This is a wine that has not improved with time. There is low acidity, and it is atypically plump and juicy though juxtaposed with intriguing refinement -- but the elements seem not to quite come together. Does it need more time? Possibly. It might need 6 hours of decanting time today, but I am unconvinced that it can marshal its elements for the exceptional performance hoped for. It though remains overall an elegantly rich, attractive 1982, but uninspiring. 91 Points 





New technology continues to change our buying habits with smaller and cheaper electronic gadgets appearing including the first CD player and a new industry is just beginning with the use of Genetic Engineering human insulin produced by bacteria is sold for the first time. On the world stage Argentina invades the Falkland Islands and Argentina and the UK go to war over a small island thousands of miles away. After many reports of Whales becoming and endangered species the International Whaling Commission decides to end commercial whaling, and a major recession hits the United States.

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The best wines of the 1982 vintage

Name Tb Producer Location
1 Château Latour 100 Château Latour Bordeaux, France
2 Lafleur 100 Château Lafleur Bordeaux, France
3 La Mission Haut Brion 100 Château La Mission Haut-Brion Bordeaux, France
4 Le Pin 99 Le Pin Bordeaux, France
5 Château Mouton-Rothschild 99 Château Mouton-Rothschild Bordeaux, France
6 Pétrus 99 Château Pétrus Pomerol, France
7 Lafite-Rothschild 99 Château Lafite-Rothschild Bordeaux, France
8 Cheval Blanc 99 Château Cheval Blanc Bordeaux, France
9 Château Haut-Brion 99 Château Haut-Brion Bordeaux, France
10 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 99 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande Bordeaux, France
11 Krug Clos du Mesnil 99 Krug Champagne, France
12 La Mission Haut Brion Blanc 99 Château La Mission Haut-Brion Bordeaux, France
13 Chevalier-Montrachet 99 Domaine Leflaive Burgundy, France
14 L'Eglise-Clinet 99 Château L'Eglise-Clinet Bordeaux, France
15 Château Margaux 98 Château Margaux Bordeaux, France
16 Krug Collection 98 Krug Champagne, France
17 Dom Pérignon P3 98 Moët & Chandon Champagne, France
18 Trotanoy 98 Château Trotanoy Bordeaux, France
19 Chateau Certan de May 98 Château Certan de May Bordeaux, France
20 Barolo Monfortino Riserva 98 Giacomo Conterno Piedmont, Italy
21 Cristal Rosé 98 Louis Roederer Champagne, France
22 Bâtard-Montrachet 98 Domaine Leflaive Burgundy, France
23 Hill of Grace 98 Henschke Eden Valley, Australia
24 Cuvée Madame 98 Château Suduiraut Bordeaux, France
25 Meursault Charmes 98 Domaine des Comtes Lafon Burgundy, France
26 Dom Pérignon 97 Moët & Chandon Champagne, France
27 Cristal 97 Louis Roederer Champagne, France
28 Krug Vintage 97 Krug Champagne, France
29 Salon 97 Salon Champagne, France
30 Château Cos d'Estournel 97 Château Cos d'Estournel Bordeaux, France
31 Château de Figeac 97 Château de Figeac Bordeaux, France
32 Château Gruaud-Larose 97 Château Gruaud-Larose Bordeaux, France
33 Château Palmer 97 Château Palmer Bordeaux, France
34 Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou 97 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou Bordeaux, France
35 Sir Winston Churchill 97 Pol Roger Champagne, France
36 Latour-à-Pomerol 97 Château Latour-à-Pomerol Bordeaux, France
37 Montrachet 97 Domaine des Comtes Lafon Burgundy, France
38 R.D. Bollinger 97 Bollinger Champagne, France
39 Blanc de Blancs Vintage 97 Billecart-Salmon Champagne, France
40 Dom Ruinart Rosé 97 Ruinart Champagne, France
41 Batard-Montrachet 97 Domaine Ramonet Burgundy, France
42 Meursault-Perrières 97 Coche Dury Burgundy, France
43 Cuvée William Deutz Rosé 97 Deutz Champagne, France
44 Champagne Charlie 97 Charles Heidsieck Champagne, France
45 Dom Pérignon Oenothèque Rosé 97 Moët & Chandon Champagne, France
46 Clos du Mesnil Vinothèque 97 Krug Champagne, France
47 Carruades de Lafite 97 Château Lafite-Rothschild Bordeaux, France
48 Château de Rayne Vigneau 97 Château de Rayne Vigneau Bordeaux, France
49 Château Certan-Giraud 97 Château Certan-Giraud Bordeaux, France
50 Bienvenues Batard Montrachet 97 Domaine Étienne Sauzet Burgundy, France
51 Cuvée Nicolas-François Billecart 96 Billecart-Salmon Champagne, France
52 Dom Pérignon Rosé 96 Moët & Chandon Champagne, France
53 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste 96 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste Bordeaux, France
54 Château Haut-Brion Blanc 96 Château Haut-Brion Bordeaux, France
55 Château Canon 96 Château Canon Bordeaux, France
56 Montrachet 96 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Burgundy, France
57 Pavie 96 Château Pavie Bordeaux, France
58 Château Léoville Poyferré 96 Château Léoville Poyferré Bordeaux, France
59 Grand Vintage Collection 96 Moët & Chandon Champagne, France
60 Brut Millésimé 96 Charles Heidsieck Champagne, France
61 Barbaresco Santo Stefano 96 Bruno Giacosa Barolo, Italy
62 Richebourg 96 Henri Jayer Burgundy, France
63 Echezeaux 96 Henri Jayer Burgundy, France
64 Hermitage 96 Domaine Jean-Louis Chave Rhône, France
65 Niepoort Vintage 96 Niepoort Douro, Portugal
66 Comtes de Champagne 96 Taittinger Champagne, France
67 Vosne-Romanée Cros Parantoux 96 Henri Jayer Burgundy, France
68 Dom Ruinart 96 Ruinart Champagne, France
69 Blanc de Blancs 96 Pol Roger Champagne, France
70 Barolo Monprivato 96 Cantina Bartolo Mascarello Piedmont, Italy
71 Vintage Port 96 Quinta do Noval Douro, Portugal
72 Vieilles Vignes Françaises 96 Bollinger Champagne, France
73 Diamant Blue 96 Heidsieck & Co Monopole Champagne, France
74 Vintage 96 Pommery Champagne, France
75 Barolo Falletto di Serralunga 0 Bruno Giacosa Barolo, Italy
76 Bienvenue-Batard-Montrachet 96 Domaine Leflaive Burgundy, France
77 Dom Pérignon Oenothèque 96 Moët & Chandon Champagne, France
78 Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill Vinothèque 96 Pol Roger Champagne, France
79 Brut Millésimé 96 Alfred Gratien Champagne, France
80 Château Clerc Milon 96 Château Clerc Milon Bordeaux, France
81 Château Petit-Village 96 Château Petit-Village Bordeaux, France
82 Chateau La Tour Haut Brion 96 Château La Tour Haut-Brion Bordeaux, France
83 Barbaresco Bricco Asili 96 Ceretto Piedmont, Italy
84 Château Margaux 96 Van der Meulen Burgundy/Bordeaux, Belgium
85 Cabernet Sauvignon 96 Wynns Coonawarra Estate South Australia, Australia
86 Château Poujeaux 96 Château Poujeaux Bordeaux, France
87 Château Meyney 96 Château Meyney Bordeaux, France
88 Château Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse 96 Château Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse Bordeaux, France
89 Chevalier-Montrachet Les Demoiselles 96 Louis Jadot Burgundy, France
90 Montrachet 96 Louis Jadot Burgundy, France
91 Léoville-Las Cases 95 Château Léoville-Las Cases Saint-Julien, France
92 Chateau Lynch-Bages 95 Château Lynch-Bages Pauillac, France
93 Château Calon Ségur 95 Château Calon-Ségur Bordeaux, France
94 Grange Hermitage 95 Penfolds South Australia, Australia
95 Montrose 95 Château Montrose Bordeaux, France
96 Vieux Chateau Certan 95 Vieux Château Certan Bordeaux, France
97 Château La Conseillante 95 Château La Conseillante Bordeaux, France
98 Unico 95 Bodegas Vega Sicilia Ribera el Duero, Spain
99 Piper-Heidsieck Brut Sauvage 95 Piper-Heidsieck Champagne, France
100 d'Yquem 95 Château d'Yquem Bordeaux, France
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