Chateau Leoville Barton 2006
- Bordeaux,St Julien
- WS94, WE94, WA92
- Bordeaux Blend
There's a great dark color to this, with intense aromas of cedar, wood, new leather and crushed blackberry. Full-bodied, with loads of fruit and a firm, powerful palate. Long and mouthpuckering. A muscular baby. Best after 2015. - WS94
Right at the top of its form, this 2006 is one of the finest wines to come out of the vintage. The wine is structured and dense, but with such heartwarming ripe fruit that the tannins are almost submerged. There is just a hint of wood, but juicy black currant continues right through to the end. In a year, the fruit will lessen, and long aging begin. - WE94
Tasted at Bordeaux Index's annual 10-Year On tasting in London. The 2006 Château Léoville-Barton has a surprisingly rich and opulent bouquet at first, although it calms down with aeration, offering crushed violet and black cherry scents, reminiscent of a fine Margaux. The palate is medium-bodied with a gentle grip in the mouth. Here the class begins to appear with fine balance and poise, but like the Langoa, it lacquers the mouth with tannins and feels very backward, surprising given the vintage. Cellar this for another decade, folks. Tasted January 2016. Drink:2025~2045 - WA92
Thomas Barton had been brought up in Curraghmore, Co. Fermanagh and left his native Ireland in 1722 at the age of 27 years old.
He worked with his maternal uncles Thomas and William Dickson who had considerable trade in France. It was in this connection that Thomas was sent to France, first to Montpellier, then to Marseille. He was not therefore pre-destined to be a wine merchant but when in 1725 he went to Bordeaux with its importance as an Atlantic port, Thomas became interested in wine and soon founded his first company which was later to become Barton & Guestier.
He rapidly created a financially successful business with a regular clientele in Ireland. He was a man of great authority, firm but honest in his transactions ; by 1737 he had already made a small fortune and was well respected in Bordeaux where he became known as “French Tom”. In 1743 he introduced his son William to the business but William was a man of very different calibre to his father and their relations were never of the best.
At this time the French law known as ‘Le Droit d’Aubaine’ stipulated that estates of any foreigner dying in France would revert to the French Crown. Although Thomas had applied for French citizenship, this was not in fact granted until after his death. For this reason he never bought any vineyards in France preferring to invest his considerable profits in property in Ireland.
He did rent an attractive home in the Médoc, Château Le Boscq in Saint-Estèphe, but it was his grandson Hugh who became the first member of the family to actually own a vineyard. Thomas died in 1780 aged 85.