(2006 Vintage) The weather in June was fine. The month of July was torrid and cause for concern. Crop-thinning was carried out so as to leave 4 to 6 bunches per vine at Ducru Beaucaillou and 6 to 8 bunches per vine at Lalande Borie. The first and limited leaf-pulling was done over the entire vineyard: to ensure that the clusters were properly ventilated. While still being protected from too much exposure to the sun that could burn them. Atlantic weather prevailed in August. It was moderately hot, with some showers during the last two weeks of the month. The first fortnight of September was sunny, even torrid, with temperatures exceeding 30 °C. This favoured the quick maturation of the Merlots which developed record levels of sugar, identical to those attained in 2005 and 2003. The Cabernets Sauvignons ripened later. Extensive leaf-pulling was carried out around the clusters so that they could fully benefit from the tender September sunshine and thus attain full maturity. This also ensured the proper airing of the berries and prevented the development of botrytis.
Wine & SpiritsOne of the most compelling Ducru Beaucaillou's made in the last quarter century is the 2003 (which is also the first vintage to be packaged in an impressive heavy glass bottle with a special long cork). A blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Merlot, it is a powerful, tannic, blockbuster effort revealing a liqueur of mineral-like component intermixed with creme de cassis, raspberry, and flower characteristics, and an atypically high 13.5% alcohol. Having firmed up considerably since bottling, it exhibits tremendous definition, weight, and concentration. It is a wine for patient read more...connoisseurs. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2025+. A brilliant tour de force! (hide)