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L'If 2021 (3.0L)

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Critic Scores, Reviews & Descriptions

95-96 JS / 94-96 VM / 93-95 JB / 92-94+ WA / 93 DE / 89-91 WI / 90 JA

A serious and saline red with blue fruit, cloves, iodine and black licorice. Oyster shells, too. Medium to full bodied with fine, firm tannins that run the length of the wine. Focused. 79% merlot and 21% cabernet franc. - James Suckling

The 2021 L'If is super-impressive right out of the gate. A high percentage of Cabernet Franc (21%) along with the introduction of 400-liter barrels yields an If that is marked by a striking interplay of richness and breadth allied to a palpable sense of energy. Dark cherry, cloves, leather, crushed rocks, rose petal and blood orange are some of the myriad aromas and flavors that develop with a little coaxing. The 2021 is a deeply intriguing wine. I can't wait to see how it ages. Tasted two times. - Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media

From the team at Le Pin, the 2021 Château L'If comes from an 8-hectare parcel near Troplong Mondot that was planted in 2010. A blend of 79% Merlot and 21% Cabernet Franc resting in 50% new barrels, it has a medium-bodied, elegant, yet concentrated profile as well as notes of ripe cherries, darker raspberries, chalky minerality, and spring flowers. The tannins here are top-notch, and it has good mid-palate depth and a great finish. A gem of a wine, it can be hard to find in the market, but it's worth tracking down. - Jeb Dunnuck

A blend of 79% Merlot and 21% Cabernet Franc, the 2021 L'If shows considerable potential, and if it evolves as well as I suspect it will during élevage, it may make my score seem conservative. Offering up aromas of dark berries and plums mingled with loamy soil, black truffles and sweet forest floor, it's medium to full-bodied, layered and seamless, with velvety tannins and a bright spine of acidity, concluding with a long, saline finish. - William Kelley, Wine Advocate

Fragrant black cherries with dark chocolate, smells so beautifully scented with juniper, plum and damson. Bright and characterful, sleek and suave on the palate, fresh and fruity, filling the mouth with mouthwatering juice. I love the minerality - saline, iodine, graphite, wet stone and pencil lead flavours with a chalky feel. It has an expansive but gentle character in the mouth, not massively weighty but a good push of flavour. A touch of austerity comes into play but this maintains direction with tension and clarity. Well worked and graceful, if a little compact right now. Lots of promise. - Georgina Hindle, Decanter

The 2021 L'If is a blend of 79% Merlot, harvested on 2, 6, 12 and 13 October, and 21% Cabernet Franc, harvested on 16 October. Deep garnet-purple in color, it springs with lively notions of fresh blackberries, redcurrants, and boysenberries, plus suggestions of lavender, cardamom, pencil shavings, and fallen leaves. Medium-bodied, the palate has a fine-grained texture and lively acidity supporting the intense black fruits, finishing with a red berry lift. pH 3.61. - Lisa Perrotti-Brown, The Wine Independent

Cyrille Thienpont is in charge here, and he has teased out attractive blueberry fruits, along with graphite, pencil lead and gunsmoke. Chalky tannins reflect the clay-limestone soils, this is full of pleasure, even while austerity is gripping the finish. Highest percentage of Cabernet Franc to date, after including recent plantings. 50% new oak. Harvest October 2 to 16. - Jane Anson, Inside Bordeaux

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