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2024 - 2042
Reviewed by Lisa Perrotti-Brown
The 2020 Branaire-Ducru displays a deep garnet-purple color and pronounced blackcurrant cordial, plum preserves and boysenberries scents, plus hints of sautéed herbs, unsmoked cigars and graphite. The medium-bodied palate has a lot of verve, delivering appealing tension among the tightly wound black fruits and grainy tannins, finishing with an herbal lift.
The 2020 Branaire Ducru has a tightly wound bouquet of blackberry, wild hedgerow, freshly tilled loam and distinct sea spray scents, all well defined, albeit 15–20 minutes after opening my sample bottle. The palate is medium-bodied with grainy tannins, and very cohesive, displaying a keen thread of acidity. Unlike previous vintages, there is impressive density on the midpalate where it once was a little lean, and plenty of energy and tension conveyed by the finish. Excellent.
(58% CS, 32% M, 7% PV, 3% CF; 40hl/ha)
Pleasing nose, softly, freshly rich, subtly gravelly; very nicely balanced, medium-full, fresh to lively in acidity, very fine in tannin, a touch of the slightly “crisper” 2020 St-Julien style; but lovely red- and black-fruit flavor, mineral-infused, a gentle flesh at the core, a very restrained mid-weight style, with a beautiful texture, gravel-marked, and with excellent length. Beautiful wine, fine St-Julien. 2030–50.
A polished, creamy red with blue fruit, such as blackcurrants, and pretty, ripe and fine tannins that fill your mouth.
Full bottle 1,350 g. 58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Franc. 18 months' ageing.
Deep crimson. Pale rim. Rather luscious fruit initially but a bit tart on the finish and just a little skinny on the mid palate. Relatively short.
The 2020 Branaire-Ducru is utterly magnificent. A wine of extraordinary depth and dimension, the 2020 possesses tremendous intensity right out of the gate. Inky dark fruit, chocolate, new leather, licorice, cloves and lavender build as into the explosive, palate-staining finish. I don't think I have ever tasted a Branaire quite like this.
Cedar, tobacco, red and black currants, mocha, spice and smoke come through loud and clear in the nose. Soft, silky and supple, the fresh red fruits are already quite expressive creating a refined, medium/full-bodied, silky, wine with purity, character and precision. This will drink well with 7--8 years of aging and will age and develop quite nicely. 93-95
The 2020 Château Branaire-Ducru is vivid purple in color, with a classy, slightly exotic nose of blueberries, plums, violets, and orange blossom, and a kiss of marine-like iron emerging with time in the glass. Medium to full-bodied, nicely concentrated, and focused on the palate, it’s not massive by any means yet shines for its balance, purity, and length.
Tasted by Jane Anson (at Primeur week tastings in Bordeaux, 01 May 2021)
Blueberry, blackberry, damson and hawthorn, this has juice and tannins with an elegance and really excellent St-Julien character; A lovely Branaire, well placed. Unfussy, this is still not overly exuberant but it has a real sense of sappiness, lift and sinew. 3% Cabernet Franc completes the blend.
Drinking Window 2027 - 2042