Red Bordeaux - 1990 - Beausejour Duffau-Lagarosse

  • Region: Red Bordeaux
  • Vintage: 1990
  • Rating: 100
  • Notes:
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Tasting Notes

One of the most singular Bordeaux I have ever tasted, it verges on being port-like, but it pulls back because of the extraordinary minerality and laser-like focus. The wine is massively concentrated, still black/purple-hued to the rim, and offers a nose of incense, blackberries, blueberry liqueur, acacia flowers, and forest floor. It reveals low acidity and high tannins, which are largely concealed by the sheer concentration and lavish glycerin the wine possesses. Aging at a glacial pace, it is approachable, but it will not hit its peak until 2020; it should last for twenty years thereafter.

Score: 100 Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (183), June 2009

One of the great modern-day legends in Bordeaux, this is wine that may, in time, be considered among informed connoisseurs the way 1961 Latour a Pomerol is often looked at, a rarity from property that seems to have produced the equivalent of a one-hit wonder. It is still dense purple, with an extraordinary nose of liquified minerals infused with licorice, violets, blackberry, blueberry, and currant. The wine is opulent, full-bodied, and seamless, with an extraordinary integration of acidity, tannin, and wood. Spectacularly complex, rich, and full with a finish that gives on for 45+ seconds, this is an incredible achievement that is hard to believe in view of what this property seems to produce routinely. Nevertheless, I had this wine a good two dozen or more times, and it just never fails to provide compelling drinking. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2030+. Last tasted, 1/03.

Score: 100 Robert Parker, Bordeaux Book (4), December 2003

I have had the 1990 Beausejour-Duffau a half-dozen times since bottling. I believe this wine may, in 15-20 years, be considered to be one of the greatest wines made this century. It is in a league with such legends as the 1961 Latour a Pomerol. Beausejour-Duffau's 1990 has always been the most concentrated wine of the 1990 vintage. The color remains an opaque murky purple. The nose offers up fabulously intense aromas of black fruits (plums, cherries, and currants), along with smoke, a roasted herb/nut component, and a compelling minerality. The wine is fabulously concentrated, with outstanding purity, and a nearly unprecedented combination of richness, complexity, and overall balance and harmony. What makes this effort so intriguing is that as good as Beausejour-Duffau can be, I know of no vintage of this estate's wine that has come remotely close to this level of quality. In several blind tastings, I have mistaken this wine for either the 1989 or 1990 Petrus! However, the 1990 Beausejour-Duffau is even more concentrated than those two prodigious efforts. It should be at its best between 2002-2030. Last tasted, 5/98.

Score: 100 Robert Parker, Bordeaux Book (3), November 1998