2023 Château Branaire-Ducru, Cru Classé St-Julien

2023 Château Branaire-Ducru, Cru Classé St-Julien

New release

Tasted April 2024. 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5.5% Cabernet Franc, 3.5% Petit Verdot. 13.1% ABV. Fragrant and expressive on the nose with petals, red berries and black plum. On the palate it's fresh and appetising with mineral notes, earth, spice and bramble fruit. Effortless, classical in style and beautifully balanced.

Critic score
93.5/100 info
Case, 3 Magnums
En primeur info
In stock

Wine details

  • Region & country
  • Maturity
    Young 2027 - 2056info
  • Colour
  • Sweetness
  • Style
  • Unit Volume
    Magnum (150cl.)

Tasting notes

The 2023 Branaire-Ducru offers up pretty notes of crushed red/purplish berry fruit, lavender, spice and mint. At this stage, the 2023 comes across as a bit light, even within the context of this property, where the wines are always laid back relative to neighboring estates. Perhaps the 2023 will flesh out over time. We will see. Tasted two times.

Antonio Galloni, vinous.com (April 2024)

The 2023 Branaire Ducru was picked from September 12, on the same day as last year, albeit with a longer harvest, as they finished on October 4. Yields were 53hL/ha, and the blend is almost the same as the 2022. This is the second vintage made in the new winery. My sample came from a new-oak barrel, but the final blend will include 60%. Lucid purple in color, it has a charming, very pure bouquet, perhaps less opulent than some of its Saint-Julien peers, yet precise. Delicate floral scents permeate the predominant red fruit, never bursting from the glass but unfurling with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly edgy tannins that impart tension, veering slightly more to black fruit on the mid-palate. This is certainly one of the most elegant Branaire-Ducru vintages to date, but it has more weight on the finish (something that has been addressed in recent years.) Understated and sapid, it should be open for business a little earlier than others, but it will age well over 20 to 25 years.

Neal Martin, vinous.com (April 2024)

This has so much lead pencil, stone and blackcurrant character, as well as blackberry. It’s medium-bodied with a solid core of fruit and a polished finish. Very classy and structured.

James Suckling, jamessuckling.com (April 2024)

The 2023 Branaire-Ducru has turned out beautifully, wafting from the glass with classy aromas of dark berries, plums, pencil shavings and licorice, followed by a medium to full-bodied, cool and layered palate that's seamless, complete and enveloping, with terrific depth and vibrancy of fruit, refined tannins and a long, suave finish. At 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5.5% Cabernet Franc and 3.5% Petit Verdot, it's almost the same blend as the 2022, though at 13.1% alcohol and a pH of 3.63, it's more classically proportioned. Harvest began on September 12 and dragged on through October 4, parcel by parcel, with the vintage's healthy yields meaning the team could use their new winery, equipped with 63 smaller tanks, to keep all those components separate.

William Kelley, robertparker.com (April 2023)

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