This morning marks the latest ex-chateau re-release of one of the most beguiling of all the First Growths, Pauillac’s Chateau Latour. Although this vintage was originally released en primeur a decade and a half ago, in more recent years the Chateau has made the revolutionary decision to remove themselves from the en primeur system in favour of releasing their wines to the market at the point when they are entering their peak window of drinking enjoyment. The demand for such a perfectly mature wine of this magnitude with perfect provenance, and which has been carefully ageing within the Chateau’s own cellar has been undeniable and today we welcome one of the greatest vintages in Latour’s modern history, the tremendous 2005.
Latour 2005 is undisputedly a wine for the ages, and it has just earned a perfect 100-point score from Antonio Galloni of Vinous who raves, ‘2005 Latour was mind-blowingly profound in two recent tastings for this report. Deep and sensual to the core, the 2005 is utterly captivating. All the elements are so seamlessly put together. Graphite, crème de cassis, licorice, dark spice and lavender infuse the 2005 with so much energy. More than anything else, though, the 2005 is a Latour of texture and resonance. Even after several hours, the 2005 is fresh and full of energy. Wines like this are just life affirming’ .It has earned a further 99 points from James Suckling who finds it, ‘Very open and beautiful now with currants, light chocolate and spices. Incense as well. Full-bodied, tight and reserved with a fantastic center palate of fruit and firm tannins. Closed and hiding behind the structure and depth. Needs time to open still but already a joy to taste (drink!)’ as well as 98+ points from Lisa Perrotti-Brown of The Wine Advocate who reveals, ‘today the wine is just starting to reveal its personality—and what a stunner! Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, it opens with provocative floral scents of roses and violets over a core of fresh blackcurrants, chocolate-covered cherries and black raspberries with hints of fertile loam, unsmoked cigars and black tea. Medium to full-bodied, firm, grainy and packed with muscular fruit, it has an epically long, savory finish sparked by floral notes.’ 

This morning this pristine ex-chateau release arrives to the market at the price of £4,440  per six IB. While this does include a price premium of nearly 20% over the scattering of existing cases within the UK, it is well worth noting that the fellow 100-point 2009 and 2010 vintages are currently trading at £5,000 and £6,000 per case of 6 respectively.
Chateau Latour has arguably the best terroir in Pauillac, with its iconic tower visible as you drive north into the village from St Julien. Latour is surrounded by top Second Growths, with Leoville Las Cases to the south and Pichon Lalande and Pichon Baron to the west; all powerful wines with high percentages of Cabernet Sauvignon. Latour tends to be the most powerful of the First Growth wines, with an intense colour, commanding flavours and aromas, firm tannins and intense vitality. Latour is the epitome of left bank Bordeaux and as one of the greatest Bordeaux vintages in modern history, the 2005 is breath-taking vintage, which should not be missed.