Chateau Latour   Forts de Latour

1997 Forts de Latour

By Chateau Latour

1997 Forts de Latour from Chateau Latour, Pauillac, Bordeaux

The 1997 Forts de Latour from the hallowed Chateau Latour presents a compelling narrative in the tapestry of Bordeaux vintages. Nurtured in the grand terroir of Pauillac, this wine encapsulates the challenges and triumphs of its birth year with admirable grace.


An Unexpected Marvel in an Underrated Year

Oft overshadowed by its more illustrious neighbours in chronology, the '97 vintage, while not bestowed with the same fanfare as its preceding '96 or successive '98, surprises with an elegant defiance. It’s a classic reminder to collectors and investors alike that quality can emerge under the disguise of a modest year.


The Nuances of Nature and Nurture

The 1997 Forts de Latour triumphed over a growing season that can at best be described as capricious. With climatic fluctuations delivering both a mild spring and a turbulent summer, meticulous vineyard management became paramount to harnessing the full potential of Pauillac’s unique terroir.

In their youth, bottles exhibited an approachable charm, with generous fruit-forward profiles. Time has worked its alchemy, fostering a metamorphosis where tertiary flavours now dance in harmony with softened tannins. Hints of ripe cassis and black cherry give way to subtle earthy notes, leather, and an ineffable whiff of Pauillac's mineral soils.


The Chronicle Continues

Today's discerning palates will appreciate how gracefully the 1997 Forts de Latour has matured. Adroit investment in this expression promises not just liquid history for one's portfolio but a continuing journey with a vintage embodying resilience and elegance against the odds.

As I reflect upon this cherished yield, I am reminded of nature's capacity for wonderment—how under her erratic guise sometimes lays hidden an unspoken potential waiting for judicious cultivation. The 1997 Forts de Latour from Chateau Latour is one such treasure; a beacon for those who seek prudence over prevailing opinion in their vinous endeavours.

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POP score


Scores and tasting notes


Quite aromatic on the nose. Slightly austere but blossoms nicely in the mouth. Good structure. Lacks some ripeness. A little stemmy. Good length. Good second wine. Tasted February 2000.

Neal Martin - Wine Advocate - Wine Journal


The 1997 Les Forts de Latour reveals a rich, blackberry, jammy (the French call it confiture) nose nicely intermingled with spice and earth. Soft, with low acidity, medium body, and good length, this plump, precocious tasting Les Forts de Latour should drink well during its first decade of life. Like so many of the 1997s I tasted, Latour's offerings are extremely evolved, soft, precocious tasting wines that are easy to comprehend.

Robert Parker Jr - The Wine Advocate, 29 April 1998

Vintage performance