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Château La Lagune, Haut-Médoc, 3rd growth 1984
An absolutely fascinating wine. 1984 is written-off as one of the most disastrous vintages of modern times. I picked up a few bottles of this wine not too long ago at a knock-down price, really just as an experiment since I hadn't tasted the vintage. The bottles are in excellent condition, filled to bottom of the neck and good colour. What a pleasant surprise when the cork was pulled: concentrated, classic claret nose of cedar, pencil-shavings and ripe, sweet cassis fruit. Really bold and inviting. On the palate a solid mouthful of blackurrant fruit, with a very attractive earthy, beefy, bloody, robust chewiness. The wine is not acidic (as I'd feared) and the tannins provide backbone without being harsh. The finish is fine, if a little short. Altogether a really tasty and structured claret for current drinking. I can only conclude that since the disaster of '84 was really the blight of the Merlot crop, this wine must be predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon/Franc. Whatever, if you do see a bottle languishing unloved on a retailer's shelf, do try it! (02/99)