Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou   Ducru Beaucaillou

2018 Ducru Beaucaillou

By Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou

2018 Ducru Beaucaillou from Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou, St-Julien, Bordeaux

In the historical lineage of Bordelaise magnificence, the 2018 Ducru Beaucaillou from Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou emerges as a beacon of structural finesse and aromatic complexity. As I divulge into my forty-year chronicle tasting Bordeaux’s liquid art, this vintage underscores the estate's diligent craftsmanship amidst challenging conditions.


A Mercurial Vintage: Balance Against the Odds

The 2018 vintage in St-Julien was no small undertaking, flirting with virtue and hazard in equal measure. Spring's tempest wrestled with summer's grace, leaving winegrowers in a suspenseful dance with the elements. And yet, from this oscillation emerged a wine with a compelling narrative - a vintage that speaks to the resolve of Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou's terroir to produce equilibrium out of caprice.

The parcel of land where the grapes destined for the 2018 Ducru Beaucaillou kiss the earth is an ensemble of deep gravel over clay, which in this year came into its own. The exemplary drainage and heat regulation showcased by this terroir proved indispensable in sculpting the wine's profile during an unseasonably warm harvesting period. The result is a St-Julien that articulates both power and poise, without conceding to the extremities of weather.


Oenological Orchestration: A Symphony in a Glass

Upon decanting, one is engulfed by wafting bouquets of ripe black cherries infused with delicate violet whispers – a prelude to what unfolds on the palate. With each sip, what ensues is an exposé of tightly woven tannins interlaced with dark fruits; cassis, plump blueberries – all underlain by an evocative undercurrent of graphite minerality drawing you deeper into its embrace.


Investment Worthy: The Allure of Patience

For connoisseurs seeking to enrich their cellars with Bordeaux's jewels, the 2018 vintage from Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou presents itself not merely as a libation but as an investment in sensorial magnification over time. Wine investment enthusiasts would do well to appraise its potential longevity, as it promises to unfurl into an even more majestic tapestry of flavours given patience and proper storage.

If one were to tender advice on prime investment-grade wines from Bordeaux's elysian fields, the 2018 Ducru Beaucaillou stands out as an assertive candidate for portfolios that appreciate wines which tell a story; one defined by hardship weathered, finesse embraced, and triumph uncorked.

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Scores and tasting notes


This is so layered and beautiful with incredible tannin quality. Full-bodied with a caressing texture that reminds me of the finest cashmere. So layered. You want to swallow this. Brings a smile to the face. Wow. So well crafted.

James Suckling - - April 2019


The 2018 Ducru-Beaucaillou is composed of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot, aged 18 months in 100% new barriques. It has a pH of 3.7, 14.5% alcohol and an IPT (total polyphenol index) of 95. Deep purple-black colored, it has a powerful nose of baked black cherries, blackberry preserves and crème de cassis with nuances of menthol, pencil lead, cedar chest and Indian spices, plus fragrant wafts of violets and licorice emerging after a few minutes. Medium to full-bodied, the palate bursts with impactful black fruits and exotic spices layers, supported by firm, ripe grainy tannins and bags of freshness, finishing on a lingering fragrant earth note. There is a brightness to the wine—surprising freshness—and yet it remains very rich and hedonic, presenting an extraordinary vinous paradox that will blow away fans of this great estate.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown - The Wine Advocate, 31 March 2021


The 2018 Ducru-Beaucaillou is composed of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot, to be aged 18 months in 100% new barriques. It has a pH of 3.7, 14.5% alcohol and an IPT (total polyphenol index) of 95. Very deep purple-black in color, it prances out of the glass with flamboyant, showy scents of cinnamon stick, wilted roses, star anise, fallen leaves and Ceylon tea with a core of blackcurrant cordial, black cherry compote, violets, chocolate mint and espresso plus a waft of crushed rocks. Full-bodied, opulent and decadently fruited with layer upon layer of black/blue fruit and floral nuances, it has an exquisitely ripe, fine-grained frame and fantastic freshness supporting the multifaceted, beguiling fruit, finishing with tons of fragrant flowers and mineral sparks. At once beautifully elegant and wonderfully bold. About 7,000 cases of the grand vin will be produced, really focusing on the area around the estate.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown - The Wine Advocate, 23rd April 2019


Another rock 'em sock 'em St.-Julien here, brimming with nearly exotic blackberry, plum, blueberry and açaí berry reduction notes, bristling with brambly energy and racing through a graphite-edged finish. Shows gorgeous perfume throughout, despite the fairly obvious level of concentration.—J.M.

James Molesworth - Wine Spectator - April 2019


Extremely complex, this is tight and holds on with an initial austerity. The plentiful tannins layer up right through the palate, but they are sandwiched by gorgeous blackberry and cassis fruits. There's an inkiness and a spice box feel here, with notes of dried herbs, black olive tapenade and graphite, all generously present. The longer the wine stays in the glass, the more the flesh of the fruit takes precedence and yet the wine manages to also convey a St-Julien classicism. This has all the elements to age exceptionally well, and to give great pleasure along the way. Harvested 19 September to 10 October. 3.7pH. 95IPT. 100% new oak.

Jane Anson - Decanter - April 2019


The 2018 Ducru-Beaucaillou is a wine of pure and total sensual beauty. Layers of intense fruit nearly cover the massive tannins that lurk beneath. Sweet floral notes, spice, mint, lavender and rose petals all grace a sublime Ducru that is long on class and character. In most recent vintages, Ducru has been a tannic behemoth, but the 2018 is remarkably silky, sumptuous and nuanced. In 2018, Ducru is not an obvious wine, but it is exceptionally beautiful. The 2018 is 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot. New oak is 100%. Tasted two times.

Antonio Galloni - Vinous - April 2019

Vintage performance