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  • Country ranking ?

    940
  • Producer ranking ?

    46
  • Decanting time

    1h
  • When to drink

    now to 2035
  • Food Pairing

    Pork Tenderloin with Caramelized Onions and Mushroom Quinoa

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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The Story

The chateau makes three different wines. The so-called grand vin, that is Château Latour itself, a second wine called Les Forts de Latour and a third wine simply called Pauillac. The grand vin comes from the original part of the vineyards, called the Enclos. This is the most prestigious part of the vineyard where the vines have a fine view of the Gironde estuary. The tradition in Bordeaux says that vines that overlook the water make the best wine. The proximity to the estuary actually gives a slightly higher temperature, helping the grapes to good maturity. The Enclos is around 45 hectares out of a total of 88 for the whole estate.

The grape varieties are 75 % Cabernet Sauvignon, 23 % Merlot, 1 % Cabernet Franc and 1 % of Petit Verdot. The planting density is high, 10,000 vines per hectare. Every year the chateau’s viticulturist replaces a certain number of dead vines. These young vines are marked and treated separately. They are harvested separately and they are not used in the grand vin until they are at least 10 years old.

The Enclos is under conversion to organic farming since 2015. It takes three years to be certified so it means that we will see the first organic Château Latour in 2018. Only copper and sulfur, mixed with different plant infusions, are used to fight diseases in the vineyard. Instead of insecticides they use sexual confusion. Only organic fertilizers are used when needed and no herbicides.

The barrel aging starts in December. Château Latour is put in 100 % new oak from the Allier and Nièvre forest in the central part of France. The chateau works with 11 different coopers. This is important to the winemaker as the coopers all have different styles.

 

The wine spends six months in the first year cellar where it will also undergo the malolactic fermentation. The barrels are tasted regularly and the winemaker decides the blend for the grand vin, the second wine and the third wine. He decides if the press wine should be included or not. The wine is then moved to the huge and magnificent second-year cellar where it will spend 10-13 months, so in total around 22 months of aging before it is bottled. 2014 was bottled in June this year. During the barrel aging the wine is racked and topped up regularly, every 3 months. At the end, the wine is fined traditionally with egg whites, 5-6 whites per barrel.

Château Latour is often a textbook example of a Cabernet Sauvignon. No wonder, as often almost 90 % of the wine is made from this grape. It is a powerful wine in its youth, with aromas of cedar wood and black fruit, made even more powerful with the aging in 100 % new oak barrels. It is packed with fruit and tannins and it stays young for at least 10 years. This is a wine you really should wait for, say 10-15 year or longer. It needs time to show what it is capable of.

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Wine Information

The weather conditions in 1947
This was a very good year in terms of quality and also very good as regards volume. It was also a year when cochylis and eudemis caused great damage. Very ripe grapes, very high degrees. Low acidity. This led to difficulties with vinification.

Vintage quality and tasting comments
A very commercial wine which matured rapidly but has proved very long-lived. Color is still not showing to much of age, tar and chocolate on the nose, full-bodied, held by a very good acidity.

Quality: Great year


The moment for optimal drinking and best way of serving:
The wine has passed its optimum, but it is still worth some interest since it has kept its fruit and balance.
If a bottle is opened, keep vertical at least half a day to settle the sediments at the bottom of the bottle. Then slowly pour the wine into a decanter in order to get rid of the sediments and serve.

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Vintage 1947

Where the 1945 represents sophistication, nuance and classic character, the 1947 is all about richness, robustness and succulence. Spring was delayed that year, which meant a late start to the growing season. Summer warmed up toward the autumn and the abundant sunshine ripened the grapes very quickly. Daytime temperatures ranged between 35-38° C. The crop was finally harvested in nearly tropical conditions, when a thunderstorm ravaged Bordeaux on 19-20 September.

Fortunately a large percentage of the grapes had already been harvested. The grapes were unusually hot during picking and volatile acids caused problems for many vineyards during fermentation. The end result was an absolutely extraordinary vintage, which turned out to be magnificent, particularly on the right bank and in Sauternes. Even young, these reds were exceptionally drinkable. Their life-cycle, on the other hand, has been surprisingly varied. The Pomerol and Saint-Émilion wines have proven superior to Médocs and Graves. The supreme wine of this vintage is most certainly the Château Cheval Blanc, which, in terms of mouthfeel, is perhaps the greatest wine of the entire 20th century. Why the Cheval Blanc was such an unparalleled success that year is something of a mystery. Unlike what happened to so many others, the Cheval Blanc didn’t suffer from excess volatile acids.

 

Everything from vineyard microclimate to production have been offered as explanations. Because the weather was unusually warm, there were no damp morning mists at the vineyards, which restricted the conditions conducive to the formation of natural yeasts that increase volatility.  The heat also killed natural yeasts and the quantity was generally less than normal. Fermentation was done in small concrete tanks, which provided effective insulation against the outside heat and kept temperatures sufficiently low, thus preventing the formation of  volatile acids. Another very interesting aspect of the Cheval Blanc’s production was its 5-10-year maturation in old barrels; this was due to the fact that new oak barrels were not available following the depression and war years. In all its glory, the 1947 Cheval Blanc caricatures modern winemaking as an incredible example of the pinnacles that can be reached with no help from technology.  In addition to the Cheval, the Pétrus and Lafleur are vintage gems. 

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Average Bottle Price

2016 2015 2013 2012 2010 2005 2000
1 766€ +37.2% 1 287€ +14.7% 1 122€ -15.1% 1 322€ +32.5% 998€ +34.0% 745€ +113.5% 349€

This data comes from the FINE Auction Index, a composite of average prices for wines sold at commercial auctions in 20 countries. The average prices from each year have been collected since 1990. This chart plots the index value of the average price of the wines.

Tasting note

color

Medium, Cherry Red and Bright

ending

Medium, Flavorful and Lingering

flavors

Blackcurrant, Voluptuous and Floral

nose

Intense, Refined, Complex and Seductive

recommend

Yes

taste

Average in Acidity, Perfectly balanced, Concentrated, Good texture, Youthful, Medium-bodied, Round, Vigor, Ripe, Dry and Silky tannins

Verdict

Transparent and Intelligent

Written Notes

It was time to get serious with some red, red wine. The first red had a great, old nose with the cobwebs, dust and leather, but still fragrance to its fruit. Sweet black cherry, cassis, a pinch of animal and an almost Asian, spicy glaze were all there in this alive and complex nose. Caramel started oozing out, along with some sautéed green beans. The palate was a bit simpler, ‘volatile’ per Wolf, who still conceded ‘beautiful sweetness,’ a ‘the sweetness of death.’ The palate was honeyed with hints of raisin and fig, round and fleshy without the flesh, lush without being chewy. It was soft, tender and caressing in the mouth, with dusty flavors of candle wax and walnuts. The intensity factor wasn’t much, but the beauty was still there in this magnum of 1947 Latour, and that is that ‘sweetness of death’ to which Wolf earlier referred (92M).
  • 92p

This wine aged quickly but has remained drinkable for a long time. The colour is still not too evolved. Bouquet of tar and chocolate, good structure and fine balance maintained by excellent acidity.

Medium garnet. Flowers, violets, cedar, sweet roasted herbs. A Latour that I can inhale throughout the evening and be absolutely content. The nose is seductiv, spicy and complex. The wonderful bouquet of flavours carries through on the palate with amazing depth and the finish is very long. The wine beguiles by evolving and changing by the minute in the glass. A multi-dimensional beauty, one with charm as well as grace. A perfect wine from a perfect bottle, ex-chateau.

  • 100p
Upper shoulder fill. Bright ruby, orange rim. Slightly floral, scented, some spices, red berries nose. With air, leather, black tea, nuanced scented and anise. Lean and dry palate, drying. With air, (two hours open and about twenty minutes in a narrow carafe), more cherries and plum stones, red berries, fuller body, if never full, long. 95
  • 95p
Medium intense, dark colour. Pronounced, smoky and complex nose with blackcurrants, burnt wood, and toastiness – still very refined and elegant. Med-bodied palate shows moderate level of acidity which is pushed firmer by the minerality. The tannins are very apparent even tough. The fruitiness is still there with dried black fruit flavours. The aftertaste is crisp, minty and energetic. Decant for 45 minutes and serve at 17C with Entrecote, haricot verts with bacon and fries.
  • 89p
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Information

Origin

Pauillac, Bordeaux

Vintage Quality

Outstanding

Investment potential

Below Average

Fake factory

There is a possibility

Drinking temperature

17-18C

Highlights

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