With one of the longest and most pedigreed histories in the Medoc region, Chateau Leoville-Las-Cases has passed through the hands of some of France’s most notable and wealthiest noble families, culminating in the Las Cases family - the final royal family to hold title to the Chateau. Up until the French Revolution, after which large portions of it were sold off, it was one of the largest vineyards in Bordeaux.
Today, the estate remains family owned by the Delons, of which brother Jean Hubert and sister Genevieve manage proceedings. Their second wine, Le Petit Lion du Marquis de Las Cases, is a relative newcomer, only having been released for the first time in 2009. The 2016 vintage has been praised for its traditional style and “light, nimble” palate.
The 2020 Le Petit Lion du Marquis de las Cases is a very serious second wine. The aromatics alone are immediately enchanting. This mid-weight Saint-Julien is so expressive today. Crushed flowers, bright red-toned fruit, mint, rose petal and cedar are all very nicely lifted. Firm, but precise tannins lend energy and proportion. The Petit Lion is a blend of young vine Cabernet and old-vine Merlot from Las Cases.
(92-94) points, Vinous (June 2021)
Small but mighty, the appellation of St.-Julien, on Bordeaux’s Left Bank, has long enjoyed a reputation for exceptional quality and consistency. Compared to its neighbours in Bordeaux, St.-Julien produces the highest proportion of classified-growth wines, with more than three-quarters of the vineyards devoted to top-ranked producers. They include several “Super Second” chateaux and many other outstanding classified growths and Cru Bourgeois. Saint-Julien wines are beautifully balanced, with a great richness, depth of colour, and elegance. Cabernet Sauvignon prevails, with Merlot and Cabernet Franc used for blending in the classic Bordeaux style.