Wine Spectator 96 points - Another prodigious, but brutally tannic, offering from the affable Anthony Barton, the inky/blue/black-hued 2005 Leoville Barton exhibits a sensational perfume of charcoal, burning embers, underbrush, cedar, creme de cassis, and subtle toasty oak. Painfully concentrated (much like the 2000 was at the same stage), with full body, admirable purity, and several boatloads of muscular tannin, this St.-Julien is built for 50-60 years of cellaring. Its purity and precision are typical of today’s winemaking, but Barton is certainly not making a wine for near-term gratification. This is another 2005 that will require enormous patience. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2065.
The Bartons respect tradition but do not ignore progress. A modern de-stemmer and the latest wine press have been introduced for the vinification. Generally fermentation lasts about five days during which the juice is pumped over twice daily. The wine is left with the skins for two weeks approximately but this depends on the quality of the crop. The wine is then drawn off and the skins are pressed, thereby obtaining the " vin de presse " which is an important component in the final blend.