The history of Château Latour can be traced back to 1378, the year in which court historian Jean Froissart wrote of a two-story tower called ‘La Tor de Sent-Maubert’ being captured by English soldiers during the Hundred Years War.
The history of winemaking at Latour, however, stretches much farther back, possibly all the way to the 12th century when tax exemptions for English markets meant a flourishing trade in wine between France and England.
Records suggest that in the 14th and 15th centuries up to two thirds of the famed L’ Enclos vineyard was already planted with vines — an unusually high percentage during a time when most estates had a mixture of vines and other crops.
A brilliant offering, which should be drinkable much earlier than the blockbuster 2000, the 2001 Latour boasts an inky/ruby/purple color to the rim as well as a glorious bouquet of black currants, crushed stones, vanilla, and hints of truffles and oak. A blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and the balance primarily Merlot with a touch of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, it reveals a sweetness on the palate that is atypical for such a young Latour. The beautiful integration of tannin, acidity, and wood is stunning. The wine flows across the palate with fabulous texture, purity, and presence. This luscious, full-bodied Latour was surprisingly open-knit on the three occasions I tasted it from bottle. However, do not mistake its aging ability as this 2001, despite its precociousness, will last 20-25 years. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2025.