Learn everything about Chateau Talbot St. Julien, Fourth Growth with wine tasting notes and wine with food pairing tips. Learn the best vintages, a history of the property, information on vineyards and winemaking. If you want to read about other important, Bordeaux Chateaux: Links to all the best Bordeaux Wine Producer Profiles
Chateau Talbot Overview and History
Legend has it that Chateau Talbot takes its name from an ancient British soldier, Connetable Talbot. In 1453, Talbot was killed during the battle in the fight at Castillon and the estate was named in his honor. Jumping ahead a few hundred years, Chateau Talbot remained in the hands of the d’Aux-Lally family until 1917, when the Cordier family bought the property.
The Cordier family were well known in Bordeaux as a negociant and for decades, they were responsible for distributing 100% of the wine from Chateau Talbot. That is no longer the case as the wines are now sold openly on the Place de Bordeaux to a wide variety of negociants.
The Cordier family also owned another famous Saint Julien estate, Chateau Gruaud Larose as well other vineyards including Chateau Senejac in the Haut Medoc appellation. Lorraine Cordier and Nancy Bignon-Cordier, the daughters of Jean Cordier own and manage Chateau Talbot today.
Chateau Talbot the Modern Era
Over the past several years, the family has invested in improving the quality of their Left Bank wines as well as the vineyards and wine making facilities and barrel cellars. Wanting to take advantage of every possibility for making the most of their terroir at Talbot, they have two consultants, Stephane Derenoncourt and Jacques Boissenot.
To further the potential of Chateau Talbot, they also completely renovated their cellars, wine making facilities, vat rooms and barrel cellars. The improvement can be seen in the angular, modern, architectural cellar design, with its handles, all in the shape of the letter T, as well as in the increased quality of the wines from coming from Chateau Talbot today.
In 2007 Talbot changed direction in an effort to improve their wine. One of their first decisions was to hire Stephane Derenoncourt as their consultant. Prior to working with Stephane Derenoncourt, following picking, Talbot used to place the berries in a tunnel that blew warm air to remove excess moisture. That practice is no longer used today.
Another change has been to pick fruit at higher degrees of ripeness while increasing their levels of sorting and reducing their yields.
Chateau Talbot has also begun experimenting with the Genodics system in their Medoc vineyards. The Genodics system emits various sounds and frequencies to enhance or curtail the growth of proteins in the vines.
The hope is that the various levels of frequencies reduce or remove the ability of parasites and diseases from developing. In late 2017, following the harvest, Jean-Michel Laporte was named the director of the estate, a position he previously held at Chateau La Conseillante in Pomerol.
Chateau Talbot Vineyard, Terroir, Grapes, Winemaking
The 102 hectare vineyard of Chateau Talbot is planted to 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc. This shows a decrease in the amount of Cabernet Sauvignon that was planted in the vineyard as recently as the mid, 1990’s.
With 102 hectares of vines, Chateau Talbot has one of the largest vineyards in the Medoc, and even more interestingly, that makes Talbot a contender for the biggest vineyard in the Left Bank that is in one large, single block of vines.
Although, their vineyard takes a few twists, turns and angles, here and there, it is truly a single, massive parcel of vines. They have good neighbors, as their vineyard abuts vines from Chateau Leoville Las Cases, Leoville Barton and Leoville Poyferre.
Chateau Talbot also occupies the highest elevations in the Saint Julien appellation at 23 meters at its peak. The terroir is mostly gravel, sand and clay soils over sandstone, clay, sand and iron, which is just below the surface.
The white wine vines are planted to 80% Sauvignon Blanc and 20% Semillon in a cooler terroir that has much more clay in the soil. The vines for the red wine are on average around 30 years old. The vineyard is planted to a vine density of 7,700 vines per hectare.
Chateau Talbot Winemaking
To produce the red wine of Chateau Talbot, the wine is vinified in a combination of temperature controlled, large, truncated, wood vats and stainless steel tanks.
The stainless steel tanks are used only for the young vines. The wine of Chateau Talbot is then aged in 50% to 60% new, French oak barrels for an average of 14-16 months. On average, the production of the Grand Vin is close to 25,000 cases per year of Chateau Talbot.
The best vintages of Chateau Talbot are: 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2010, 2009, 2005, 1986, 1982 and 1961. Older vintages of Chateau Talbot are said to have the ability to age, so they might be worth taking a risk on, when buying at auction.
Chateau Talbot White Bordeaux Wine
Chateau Talbot also produces a white Bordeaux wine called Le Caillou Blanc. Le Caillou Blanc is the only white wine produced in the Saint Julien appellation. In fact, it is also one of the first white Bordeaux wines ever produced in the Medoc.
The first vintages of Talbot Le Caillou Blanc came out in the 1930’s. There is a second wine, Connetable Talbot as well as a third wine, Seigneur de Talbot.
When to Drink Chateau Talbot, Anticipated Maturity, Decanting Time
Chateau Talbot can be enjoyed on the young side with several hours of decanting. However, the wine is usually better with 7-10 years of bottle age. Of course that can vary slightly, depending on the vintage character.
In the best years, the wine will best between 12 and 20 to 25 years of age after the vintage. Young vintages can be decanted for an average of 2 hours. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume.
Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment. Older vintages, from the 1950’s, 1960’s and 1980’s seem to age better than the current years. But time will tell.
Serving Chateau Talbot with the Best Wine, Food, Pairing Tips
Chateau Talbot is best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift.
Talbot is best served with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised, stewed and grilled dishes. Talbot is also good when served with Asian dishes, hearty seafood or richly textured fish like tuna, mushrooms, pasta and cheese.
Château Talbot Wine Tasting Notes
26 Vintages 168,281 Views Sort by Vintage-Rating
|2017||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Bright red fruit, crisp tannins, thyme, tobacco and cedar notes lead the way to a medium/full bodied, crisp wine with an earthy edging to the leafy, black currants in the finish.
1,921 Views Tasted Apr 26, 2018
|2016||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Medium bodied with sweet black plums and a licorice, espresso personality, this one is already approachable with round textures and an oaky, juicy, dark fruit finish. The wine was made from a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot and 6% Petit Verdot.
2,640 Views Tasted Apr 29, 2017
|2015||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
A well made charmer. The wine opens with a smoke and espresso filled nose that adds black cherry, licorice and cassis as the wine takes in air. Soft, refined, forward and open, a few years will add more to the round textured, polished finish. .
2,893 Views Tasted Mar 12, 2018
Espresso, smoke, licorice, cassis and black cherry create the nose. Forward in style with round-textures and an earthy, blackberry and cassis finish. 91 - 93 Pts
2,282 Views Tasted Apr 20, 2016
|2014||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Medium bodied, with bit of strictness in the tannin that leaves you with a touch of dryness in the finish, that takes away from the otherwise, complex aromatics and tasty, spicy, earthy fruits.
2,662 Views Tasted Feb 2, 2017
Forward in style with a nose of espresso, blackberry, dark cherry, cocoa and the woodsy aroma of terre-mere, this round-textured wine radiates an easy-to-like quality which is soft, fresh and clean. This is the best vintage for Talbot produced with the aid of the Stephane Derenoncourt team yet. 91-93 Pts
3,403 Views Tasted Apr 16, 2015
|2013||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
With a nice floral note on top of the red fruits, licorice and espresso, this medium bodied wine is set to give early drinking pleasures.
2,018 Views Tasted Feb 9, 2016
Medium bodied with a whiff of oak in the red berry nose, the wine is on the light side. This is for early drinking in its first decade of life. 87-88 Pts
2,170 Views Tasted Apr 20, 2014
|2012||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Medium bodied, sweet and tart red berry dominated wine with an earthy, cedar and tobacco kick to the nose. Forward in style, the wine will drink well by its 10th birthday.
3,516 Views Tasted Nov 16, 2017
Medium bodied, forward, with an open style that is already showing off its licorice, espresso, black cherry and round, earthy profile.
3,414 Views Tasted Mar 11, 2015
Licorice, black raspberry, and espresso scents open to a soft, polished, round, medium-bodied wine filled with black cherries. From a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot and 3% Petit Verdot, the wine reached 13.6% alcohol. 89-91 Pts
2,103 Views Tasted Apr 23, 2013
|2011||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Smoke, juicy, ripe, dark, red berries, licorice and espresso beans create the aromatics. The tannins are a bit dry, which carries through into the finish.
3,956 Views Tasted Feb 16, 2014
With truffle, coffee, smoke and black cherry jam, this medium-bodied wine has round tannins with a short, fresh red berry finish. 88-90 Pts.
3,189 Views Tasted Apr 13, 2012
|2010||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
2010 Talbot Using 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot, the wine offers cassis, earth and tobacco scents. Medium/full bodied, the cassis filled finish shows a hint of green flavors in the end. 88-90 Pts
5,179 Views Tasted Apr 20, 2011
|2009||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Blending 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot and 4% Petit Verdot, thanks to the help of consultant, Stephane Derenoncourt, the wine offers polished, round textures and a perfume loaded with coffee, ripe, juicy, dark berries, licorice and black cherry jam.
9,620 Views Tasted Feb 5, 2012
Deeply colored, with aromas of licorice, cassis, herbs, oak and earth, this charming, full bodied, round textured St. Julien wine is filled with juicy ripe blackberries and cassis.
8,710 Views Tasted Jul 20, 2011
2009 Talbot is earthy, offering licorice covered dark berry flavors with soft opulent textures, and a sweet finish filled with cassis, spice, and fennel. 90-92 Pts
9,798 Views Tasted Aug 26, 2010
|2008||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
08 Château Talbot is a big step up from previous vintages. Cassis, oak, and spice are in the bouquet. Even though opulent in texture, the wine lacks some concentration. What’s behind the improvement in the estate is the recent decision to hire Stephane Derenoncourt as the consultant. 90-92 Pts
6,475 Views Tasted Aug 31, 2009
|2007||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Lean, earthy, medium bodied, tobacco and red berry on the nose. Light in color and in fruit, the wine is on the tart, herbal side of the style range and needs to be consumed.
2,919 Views Tasted Jun 23, 2017
Lean, earthy, medium bodied, tobacco and reb berry on the nose. Light in color and in fruit, the wine is on the tart, herbal side of the style range and needs to be consumed.
3,141 Views Tasted Mar 30, 2017
|2006||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Better on the earthy, tobacco and crisp red berry nose, than on the lean, medium bodied, firm, palate.
2,603 Views Tasted May 25, 2016
Foursquare, medium bodied and focused on the crisp, red berry side of the Cabernet Sauvignon, lovers of older, less ripe styles of wine should be all over this.
4,048 Views Tasted Jul 25, 2013
|2005||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Tannic, tight and still a touch okay, this is soft and approachable at a young age for Talbot. Licorice, earth, cassis, blackberry, smoke and coffee aromas lead to a fresh, round, dark berry filled finish. Another 5 years will add a lot of complexity to this wine.
11,656 Views Tasted Dec 11, 2011
|2004||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Mature, medium bodied, with a focus on bright red fruits, cranberry, herbs and earth in its personality.
2,526 Views Tasted Jan 4, 2015
|2003||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Already developed, this soft, lush, round textured St. Julien offers blackberry, black cherry, herbs, spice, earth and tobacco notes. This medium bodied wine is not going to make old bones. I'd drink it now, or at least finish it by the time the wines hits 15 years of age, give or take a few years.
4,695 Views Tasted Jan 27, 2013
|2001||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
There is a lot of classic charm here, with its tobacco, black raspberry, cedar and earthy character. The tannins are soft, but present, letting you know this is nice now, and will be better with a bit more time in the bottle.
5,287 Views Tasted May 9, 2014
|2000||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Earth, barnyard, green olive tapenade, cassis and herbal aromas lead to a Bordeaux wine on the lean, austere side. The finish offers cassis, olives and a drying tannic finish. Still young, perhaps this will fill out with time, but it will always maintain the herbaceous, olive profile.
11,705 Views Tasted Jul 31, 2011
|1996||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Fully developed, and in its sweet spot, the wine is medium bodied and easily offers up its smoky, earthy, herbal, slightly rustic, red berry character.
1,619 Views Tasted Oct 5, 2018
|1990||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Fully mature, the wine lacks the density and purity of its neighbors. But the fruit is clearly ripe. Better on the nose than the palate, the bouquet, with its cedar chest, tobacco leaf, smoke, thyme, and woodsy aromatics are a treat. The wine is soft and has taken the textures showing the patina of age. From memory, I liked this wine a lot more 10 years ago.
1,605 Views Tasted Sep 21, 2018
|1989||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Typical Cordier funk nose with a touch of barnyard, cassis, black fruit, tobacco and a hint of rhubarb. Decent texture, but not much elegance or excitement. The wine delivers more on the nose than the palate.
4,906 Views Tasted Mar 12, 2012
Typical Cordier funk nose with a touch of barnyard, cassis, and black fruit, along with a hint of rhubarb. Decent texture, but not much elegance or excitement.
7,303 Views Tasted Jun 18, 2009
|1986||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Powerful, masculine, brawny and still tannic, the wine is concentrated with beefy, dark fruits, earth and tobacco. Classic in style, with a lot of earth, cigar box, cedar and barnyard, some people are going to like this more than others.
4,595 Views Tasted Jul 25, 2013
It is a brutish style, but if you're looking for a boatload of ripe Cabernet fruit served with a massive dose of tannin, you found it! If you're seeking wines that exchanges elegance for power, this is it
3,133 Views Tasted Nov 21, 2003
|1982||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Fully mature, with a nose of tobacco, cigar box, cassis, figs and a hint of jam. The wine is full bodied, concentrated and feels great through the earthy, cassis and cigar wrapper finish.
3,516 Views Tasted Nov 28, 2015
Barnyard, earth, leather, tobacco, cedar and black cherry, some rusticity and dryness in the textures with an earthy, solid textured, tart cassis and olive finish. This one of those wines that fans of more traditional Bordeaux will like it a lot more than I did.
4,975 Views Tasted May 26, 2012
|1975||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Tough, austere and strict, the wine lacks charm. Lovers of these old, classic vintages could like this better than I did.
2,973 Views Tasted Apr 16, 2016
|1961||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Starting to dry out, medium bodied with more cranberry than cassis, tobacco, earth, smoke, wet forest floor and cigar box, the finish has started to take on tart, rustic qualities. Better on the nose than the palate. drink up.
6,678 Views Tasted May 26, 2012
|1955||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
Surprisingly good, and in much better than the fabled 1961 and many other mature vintages of Talbot, the wine offers the perfect blend of tertiary notes and ripe, dusty, fresh piquant cassis and cherries. On the fresh side, but in the exact ripe proportion, the wine provided character, sweet and tart red berries and a gorgeous cedar and tobacco stained charm. There is no reason for further aging, but if you find a bottle in great shape at an auction, it is worth taking a chance on.
1,297 Views Tasted Oct 24, 2018
|1949||Château Talbot (St. Julien)|
At least this particular bottle has developed strong balsamic scents that almost overwhelmed the remain, tobacco, cigar box, cedar, leather and lead pencil notes. Not much fruit remained, as the wine has shifted to the sharper, brighter, acidic side of the tart, red berry range. Perhaps larger formats will show better, but this is a risky bottle to purchase today.
1,152 Views Tasted Sep 21, 2018