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Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey 2015
1er Grand Cru Classé Sauternes
Juin 2016 – Vinum
Transzendente, blumig-fruchtige Aromatik, immense Dichte, ewige Länge, perfektionistische Machart: besitzt Fülle, Rasse, Dichte, aber auch alle Anlagen zu grosser Finesse und Eleganz. 2019 bis 2050
A transcendent floral and fruity bouquet, immense density, endless length, perfectionist style: rich, spirited and dense, yet with full potential for great finesse and elegance. 2019 to 2050
Mai 2016 – La Revue du Vin de France – Roberto Petronio
Classé dans "Ses quatre Sauternes à acheter en priorité": " Tirant la quintessence de ce grand terroir, ce cru classé s'impose au sommet par sa pureté"
Joli nez engageant, beau conflit, élevage élégant qui se manifeste par une petit note beurrée. Fruit net et pur. Belle vibration en bouche grâce à une sensation d’acidité qui équilibre une liqueur apportant une petite rondeur. Matière élancée et raffinée. Finale sur le pamplemousse jaune.
Mai 2016 – Vinifera – Jacques Perrin
Classé parmi les vins exceptionnels
En dépit de sa richesse, il a gardé un côté cristallin. La profondeur de goût ainsi que l’expression lumineuse de ce vin sont remarquables. Il évolue en crescendo et culmine dans une grande finale.
Mai 2016 – Bernard Burtschy
Les bordeaux blancs liquoreux 2015, un millésime tout en élégance
De robe paille dorée, le vin se présente avec un joli nez fin, paille coupée sur fond de fruits confits et d’épices. Le vin est d’une grande élégance, il ne possède pas sa puissance habituelle, mais plus de fraîcheur et une belle complexité, le milieu de bouche affiche certes un petit creux passager, mais la belle acidité porte la finale. Très beau vin.
65 sémillon, 35 sauvignon. 5-20 ans.
Avril 28, 2016 – En Magnum – Bettane+Desseauve
Immense réussite, une des plus complètes du secteur, merveilleux nez de botritysation parfaite du raisin, assez proche de celui d’Yquem, en un rien plus massif, grande finale, un sauternes à son plus somptueux et certainement le vin le plus complet des vingt dernières années de la propriété.
Bravo à l’équipe réunie par Eric Larramona.
April 2016 – Jeff Leve – The Wine Cellar Insider
From 65% Semillon and 35% Sauvignon Blanc, the wine smells great with its nutty, pineapple, vanilla and lemon custard aromatic profile. Fresh and zippy, the wine is rich, fat, sweet, and dense with the right amount of acidity to keep all that sweetness in check.
April 2016 – Vinous – Antonio Galloni
Silvio Denz's 2015 Lafaurie-Peyraguey is terrific. Understated and wonderfully nuanced, the 2015 exudes class. The tropical fruit, pineapple, mango, apricot, honey and chamomile notes are beautifully sketched. There is so much to like. The blend is approximately 96% Sémillon, 4% Sauvignon, 1% Muscadelle from yields of just 10 hectoliters per hectare. Denis Dubourdieu consults.
April 19, 2016 – Decanter – Ian D’Agata
Perfumed nose of acacia honey, crystallised ginger, lemon verbena, juniper and fresh citrus fruit. Impeccable balance to the acid-sugar-tannin ratio and boasts noteworthy refinement. One of the best Sauternes of the vintage; refined yet powerful.
Avril 12, 2016 – Yves Beck
Jaune doré. Bouquet complexe, expressif, aux notes fruitées et épicées. Notes de mirabelles et d'abricots avec une touche de citron. Oranges amères confites. Attaque fruitée, suave et concentrée. Le vin a de la minéralité et du muscle avec une belle structure acide qui donne une perspective d'avenir exceptionnelle. En fin de bouche je relève une touche d'amertume, parfaitement emballée, qui contrecarre la puissance et la sucrosité. Un vin à suivre, doté d'une finale fruitée, caractérielle et persistante. 2025-2055
Avril 11, 2016 – Terre de Vins – Yohan Castaing
« Coup de Cœur »
Eric Larramona poursuit son travail de longue haleine sur ce cru. La qualité du travail à la vigne, l’intelligence du millésime, le sens du liquoreux, tout concoure pour faire de Lafaurie-Peyraguey un cru majeur de l’appellation.
Trame aromatique dynamique, fraîche, noble, pure. Grosse densité soutenue par une fraîcheur racée, de l’allonge et un bel équilibre. Superbe liqueur. Un sauternes brillant et magnifique.
April 5, 2016 – Wine Spectator - James Molesworth
A ripe, unctuous style, with a big core of nectarine, peach, mango and quince flavors, backed by lots of spice and ginger. Among the more backward examples at this early stage, but everything is here.
April 4, 2016 – James Suckling
A purity and finesse to this young Sauternes with mushroom, botrytis and flower character. The sweetness, fruit, phenolics and acidity balance it out to an ethereal level. Lovely finish.
April 2016 – Markus del Monego
Intense yellow color with green hue. Expressive nose with aroma reminiscent of juicy apricots and ripe pear, candied lemon peel and hints of lime-zest in the background.
April 2016 – René Gabriel
Mitteldunkles Gelb, somit recht intensiv, leuchtender Rand. Enorm viel frische Früchte zeigend, Pfirsich, Ananas, zart leimige Botrytis, Vanillin und dann auch Lindenblüten im zweiten Ansatz zeigend, welcher auch eine feine Mineralik in sich birgt. Elegant fliessender Gaumen, er zeigt Nonchalance und Harmonie und auch hier kommt die Fruchtfrische wieder voll durch. Hier hat man die Finessen dem Reichtum vorgezogen. Und das wird wohl dann auch gleich die neue Marschrichtung für kommende Jahrgänge sein. Trinkbar: bis 2055.
At the heart of the great terroirs of the Sauternes region, Lafaurie-Peyraguey’s vineyard is located on the terrace of Sauternes gravel, 70 metres above sea level, just next to Château d’Yquem. The “Enclos” and “Maisons Rouges” plots represent the historic heart of Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey’s magnificent terroir, consisting of gravel from the Quaternary era which was deposited here more than 600,000 years ago, on a substratum of Aquitania limestone.
Silvio Denz’s objective is to produce very fine wines from the best terroirs. Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey will be made from the vines of the great historic 1855 terroirs in order to enhance its quality.
Harvesting: manual with successive rounds of highly selective picking (4 to 7, depending on the year) during the ripening period, in order to preserve the desired aromatic precision
Environmental integrity: sustainable viticulture, no chemical herbicides
Vinification: in fine-grained French oak barrels, with 40 to 70% new oak barrels each year depending on the vintage. Fermentation at between 17°C and 23°C in the air-conditioned, humidity-controlled winery, for 18 to 30 days depending on the batch
Ageing: in French oak barrels, with 40 to 70% new oak barrels depending on the vintage, for 18 to 20 months
Average production: 40000 bottles
Second wine: La Chapelle de Lafaurie-Peyraguey
Complete 2015 Bordeaux report by Andrew Caillard MW “Next in line of a great series of vintages; 2000, 2005, 2009, 2010 & 2015.”
2015 is a wonderful Bordeaux vintage without the hype or hysteria associated with 2009 and 2010. The wines are generally expressive and generous with marvellous concentration and structure. Give another year in barrel, the wines should gain more fruit complexity and volume. The Châteaux, across all sub-regions, are excited by the beautiful fragrance, clear fruit flavours and brisk energy of the wines, and believe the vintage to be the best since 2010. More than a few times the phrase “a vintage of the decade” has been mentioned. I have tasted through most of the top wines, some on more than a few occasions, and feel confident that this is a vintage worth supporting. It is a very successful vintage.
Weather conditions were generally ideal with perfect flowering and set during Spring. A hot dry and sunny spell during June and July kept the vines in balance; the near-drought conditions resulted in excellent cluster development. Veraison (in which the grape berries turn from green and hard to coloured and fleshy) began towards the end of July. Light rains refreshed the canopies and hydrated the clusters. Cooler weather arrived in August with above average rainfall. The northern Medoc was exposed to heavy rains, but no berry splitting or significant disease pressure was reported. The cooler conditions running up to harvest in September allowed the grapes to conserve their aromatic potential and ripen relatively evenly.
The red wines across the right bank and the left bank are generally impressive in concentration, vigour and freshness. While all the wines are tasted extremely young, it is easy to see the quality and dimension of the vintage. Merlot performed particularly well, with many Châteaux picking intermittently over a three-week window to achieve optimal freshness, fleshiness and ripeness. Cabernet Franc, its companion in many of the wines, gives an attractive “tannin seam” and structural vigour. Already observers are calling it a right bank (St Emilion & Pomerol) year. Ch Vieux Château Certan, described as “La Force Tranquille,”and Château Petrus were my top two right bank wines followed by Château Ausone. All have a buoyancy and precision that augers well for the future.
The southern left bank (Margaux and Pessac-Leognan) also stumped up some beautiful concentrated wines. The alcoholic strength and tannin ripeness seem to correlate with this impression. Cabernet Sauvignon, typically ”needing to takes its time”, brought wines of lovely aromaticity, concentration and vitality. The success of this variety has been dependent on the sophistication of harvesting and selection at blending. Château Margaux and Château Palmer are amazing wines. Château Haut Brion and Château La Mission Haut Brion made dense chocolaty styles. Château Haut Bailly is particularly refined and beautifully balanced.
At Château Batailley, the introduction of a second wine and closer attention to differentiation, led to one of the best vintages in its history. Many of the small refinements and decisions in the vineyard and winery allowed several top Châteaux in St Julien, Pauillac and St Estephe to make beautiful wines too. The hard selection process is particularly evident on the left bank. Château Margaux and Château Cos d’Estournel chose to rigorously defend their first wines by very detailed picking and selection. Only 35% and 39% (respectively) of the harvest went into their Grand Vin. St Emilion’s Ch Cheval Blanc on the other hand comprised 95.1% of the harvest, leaving no reason to make Petit Cheval in 2015.
Attention to detail in the vineyard, especially after the August rains, and huge investment in optical sorting machines (at a cost of around 200,000 Euros each) at harvest ensured the grapes were in good condition before vinification. It is quite incredible how the fruit arrives into the winery these days. Meticulous attention to detail has become the norm within the Grand Cru Classé community. The First Growth Estates with their huge financial investments in vineyard and cellar practices, all made impressive wines this year. Perhaps the most evocative of all is Château Margaux. The death of the estate’s longstanding winemaker Paul Pontallier, on Easter Sunday from cancer, rocked Bordeaux’s wine community. He was a man for all seasons. He brought the best out of his people and his wines, whatever the vintage offered. 2015 Château Margaux, in all likelihood, will be the greatest vintage of its modern history.
Despite the sombre mood at this year’s 2015 En Primeurs tastings, the energy of Spring brought a sense of renewal. Budburst in the vineyards, white and pink blossom in full bloom, the pure chirrup of fledglings and the vibrant new wines of the vintage promised the animation and maturation of life. The colours, densities, flavours and tannin quality of the young red wines all suggest a great vintage in the making. It is one of the wine trade’s most curious practices to make comment on unfinished wine, yet somehow the predictions become more or less right. Over the next year the wines will develop more fruit complexity, richness and volume in barrel. The tannins, oak and fruit will further integrate.
The sweet aperitif/ dessert wines of Sauternes and Barsac have also fared extremely well. The combination of even ripening and optimum outbreaks of botrytis cinerea has brought some magnificent wines. Some are calling it the best vintage since 2001, arguably the greatest vintage in recent memory. While Ch d’Yquem looked gorgeous, the elegantly styled Ch Climens, still in many parts, will be wonderful. Typically this wine is tasted out of several barrels, and my notes are a composite of eight different elements. The fragrance, vibrancy, freshness, and line are amazing. The dry whites, mainly Sauvignon Blanc or Gris dominant are refreshing styles with attractive freshness and drive. Ch Haut Brion Blanc is an amazing wine, but its release price will reflect its rarity.
The Châteaux will likely bring out the vintage in two tranches to capture the appetite of the world’s wine trade. The first offers will probably be a touch higher than last years opening prices. This will be against the advice of the negociants who have been running on very low margins for many years now. The weakening of the British Pound and the Australian Dollar against the euro may be a stumbling block for some buyers, but there will be value and opportunity in this forthcoming primeur campaign. For Australian buyers, this is absolutely the best way to buy Bordeaux. Provenance is guaranteed, allocations confirmed and the price will still be less than future imports, by virtue of the structure of the Place de Bordeaux.
Better market conditions in China and the US, together with a significant vintage in both quantity and quality, will see momentum return to Bordeaux after a four-year period of stagnation and uncertainty. The cat and mouse game between the Châteaux, the negociants and wine trade now begins. Regardless of the outcome, Bordeaux will continue to be the fine wine reference for many decades. There is something utterly unique, invigorating and evocative about mature Bordeaux wines. The best of the 2015 will be transformative and delicious to drink. All you need is patience, moderately deep pockets and the will to buy!
Margaux / Beautiful wines with gorgeous fruit density and fine sinuous tannins. Its is some years since Margaux shone so brightly. Ch Margaux, Ch Palmer, Ch Rauzan Segla, Ch Rauzan Gassies, Alter Ego de Cg Palmer. Ch Pavillon Rouge, Ch Malescot de St Exupery, Ch D’Angludet, Ch Kirwan, Ch Cantenac Brown and Ch Brand Cantenac are highlights.
St Julien / Fragrant and well concentrated with slinky textures and inky length. Ch Leoville Lascases, Ch Ducru Beaucaillou and Ch Leoville Barton were top performers. But I also liked Ch Beychevelle, Ch Branaire Ducru and Ch Lagrange, Croix de Beaucaillou and Ch Lalande Borie, both connected to Ch Ducru Beaucaillou, are beneficiaries of meticulous selection.
Pauillac / The very top estates made great wine. The First Growths all made very fine wines. There is a debate about which is best. I like Ch Mouton Rothschild the best and admired Ch Latour for its precision and potential for longevity. The latter won’t be released en-primeur so ist academic. Ch Lafite is excellent too. Ch Pontet Canet is outstanding, as you would expect from such an enlightened and eccentric estate. I was also immensely impressed with Ch Batailley and Ch Lynch Bages. Ch Clerc Milon, Ch Grand Puy Lacoste, Ch Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande and its opposite neighbour Ch Pichon Longueville Baron.
St Estephe / Classic wines with aromatic complexity and muscular drive. A little more variable than other sub-regions, probably because of its exposure to heavy rains and Atlantic weather. Ch Montrose and Ch Cos’ d’Estournel made beautiful wines, by very careful selection of the crop. Their associate wines were very good too; La Dame de Montrose, Ch Tronquoy-Lalande and Pagodes de Cos.
Pessac Leognan & Graves / Powerful wines with density and strength. Both Ch La Mission Haut Brion and Ch Haut Brion are standouts with amazing concentration and vigour, accompanied by relatively high alcohols. The superb Ch Haut Bailly, Ch Smith Haut Lafitte, and Domaine de Chevalier are my personal favourites.
Pomerol / Wonderful fleshy wines with superb concentration and chocolaty textures. It is one of the most impressive Pomerol vintages of the last twenty years with "lots of shoulder and length." Vieux Chateau Certan and Ch Petrus were profound standouts. The list is long but Ch Latour-à-Pomerol, Ch La Fleur, Ch Lafleur Petrus, Ch Trontanoy, Ch Hosanna and Ch Bon Pasteur were also highlights.
St Emilion /A very strong year, many wines having superb fruit generosity, freshness and line. Ch Angelus, Ch Ausone, Ch Canon, Ch Cheval Blanc, Ch Figeac, Ch Trottevielle, and Ch Troplong Mondot are very top performers. Highlights also include Ch Beauséjour, Ch Canon La-Gaffelliere. Ch Gracia, Ch La Couspaude, Ch La Dominique, Ch Larmande, Ch Pavie Macquin, Quinault L'Enclos, Clos Fourtet, La Chapelle d’Ausone and Clos Cantenac. Ch Chantecaille Clauzel, lying like a shag on an encrusted diamond rock, is not particularly well known, but its story is remarkable and the wine worth buying for the conversation alone.
Sauternes Barsac /A very strong year. The wines possess beautiful fragrance, clarity, viscosity, richness and acid line. Ch Climens, Ch Coutet and Ch Guiraud are wonderful standouts. Ch de Rayne Vigneau, Ch Doisy Daene, Ch Doisy Vedrines. Clos Haut Peyraguey, Ch La Tour Blanche, Ch Rabaud Promis, Ch Rieussec and Suduiraut all produced fine examples too. The lesser known Ch Broustet, Ch Caillou, Ch de Myrat and Ch Suau were exemplary. Ch d’Yquem is of course impressive, but next door neighbour Ch Guiraud, offers a very similar quality and style.