1985 Château Carbonnieux Rouge Grand Cru Classe’ Pessac-Léognan


Roman Carbonnieu owned vineyards in Léognan in 1234, so at Carbonnieux they know a thing or two about making wine. That sort of legacy shows in many fine, very solid wines made by the property over the years. One of the best compliments I have in store for Château Carbonnieux and its owners, the Perrin family, is that their wines are about as consistent as great wines get. Simply put, in just about any vintage, Château Carbonnieux (rouge or blanc, for that matter) rarely disappoints; it may not reach the quality pinnacle of its appellation but rarely brings up the rear. Even better, it is always very sensibly priced and makes an especially good restaurant choice not just by the glass, but by the bottle too (since ordering one isn’t going to put you in the poor farm).

The 1985 Château Carbonnieux Rouge is still a sexy, wine that is drinking beautifully. The wine showcases the vintage’s telltale soft fruity charm, with still plump red and black fruit aromas and flavors, suave tannins and outstanding length. The noteworthy smoke, tobacco and cedar nuances are unmistakably Pessac-Léognan. This beauty is still red in color, with a thin brick rim. Yet, it has more life ahead, even though it is irresistible now and I see no need to defer gratification. Drink up and enjoy, while your 2005s and 2010s Carbonnieux wines mature in the cellar. 92/Drinking Window: 2016-2020.