Beaulieu Vineyard, Georges de Latour Private Reserve, 1967
Deep brown porty colour, the aromas leap out of the glass – you have the feeling on first sniff of something very old but very much alive. There’s a hint of river mud and salinity on the nose. The palate is really fine, full with a hint of minerality (wet stone). It’s amazingly fresh and bright, dusty tannins bringing precision, and juice bringing freshness. Hugh Johnson, who tasted it in 1999, described it as “left-bank austerity”, and austere it is, with an overtone of violet perfume. It dies in the glass; the fruit evaporates and the tannins tighten: the wonder of these old wines is the window of 10-15 minutes you have to enjoy them.