Carbonnieux 2020

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Tasting Notes and Scores


Wine Advocate

Drink Date
2024 - 2040

Reviewed by Lisa Perrotti-Brown

Sporting a deep purple-black color, the 2020 Carbonnieux opens with notes of tar, dark chocolate and licorice, giving way to a core of stewed black plums, cassis and blackberry compote, plus a waft of smoked meats. The medium to full-bodied palate delivers mouth-coating, juicy black fruits, supported by firm, grainy tannins and seamless freshness, finishing savory.


Neal Martin

This Pessac-Léognan has been a little inconsistent of late. The 2020 Carbonnieux, matured in 35–40% new oak, has a slightly subdued nose despite giving it ample aeration, blackberry, mint and light floral aromas gradually unfurling. The palate is medium-bodied with grainy tannins, fine acidity, crisp blackberry and wild strawberry fruit and a slightly chalky finish. It is traditional in style, but that is not necessarily a bad thing, and I find there is more persistence on the finish compared to the recently tasted 2018 in bottle. This is a return to form. -


Michael Schuster

(60% CS, 30% M, 5% CF, 5% PV; 40hl/ha; 14.5% ABV; 40% new)
Black-fruit ripe, but with the gravel aromas still there, too; rich, lively, finely tannic, a very nice balance; abundant in fruit, mineral-backed, long and juicy, with a freshly defining acidity, and a very fine tannin texture, intense in flavor, a touch of “super ripeness” and alcohol warmth, but complete, long, and mineral to finish, and very good. One of the best Carbonnieux reds for years. 2028–38+.


James Suckling

A velvety-textured red with lots of blackberry, black-olive, mushroom and walnut character. Full and dense, but fresh and vivid on the finish. Pretty layers of fruit and tannins.


Jancis Robinson

Full bottle 1,325 g. Cask sample taken 6 April. 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc. Aged in barrel (35–40% new) for 15 to 18 months.
Dark purplish crimson. Aromatic with a hint of pyrazines. But no obvious lack of ripeness on the palate until the very end, which is just slightly pinched. But this is a classic Graves. Not for those who seek opulence but very refreshing – and it may well age rather well. But I suspect it may always be slightly austere.


Antonio Galloni

The 2020 Carbonnieux is dark and juicy to the core. Inky red cherry, cedar, leather, tobacco, smoke and mocha are all kicked up in this deep, flavorful Pessac-Léognan. Bright acids and a firm spine of tannin lend energy while giving the wine its sense of proportion. This is such a gorgeous wine.


Jeff Leve

Deeply colored, this is already showing off its vanilla bean, flowers, tobacco, cherry and currant character on the nose. Supple, soft and silky, with refined fruits that feel stellar on your palate, give this 4-5 years in the cellar and it is going to be even better. This should age for at least 2 decades. 91-93


Jeb Dunnuck

Another beautiful Graves, the 2020 Château Carbonnieux is medium to full-bodied, with plenty of classic Graves earthiness as well as beautiful red and blue fruits, lots of floral and exotic notes, ripe, polished tannins, and remarkable overall purity. This is certainly going to be an outstanding wine.



Tasted by Jane Anson (at Primeur week tastings in Bordeaux, 01 May 2021)

Juice and freshness running through this, with a velvety texture and sense of momentum. Violet reflections, touches of chocolate and rosemary spice, still the savoury fruit that is typical of the vintage, clearly concentrated, but well balanced overall. 2% Cabernet Franc completes the blend. A yield of 42 hl/ha. 40% new oak. HVE3 certificated with one organic control plot.

Drinking Window 2027 - 2040