Since 1580, Château Larrivaux has been exclusively managed and owned by women from the same family, making it one of the original (if not THE original) female-run businesses in the wine industry. The family first made wine at Larrivaux back in 1861, and ownership has always passed through the female line.
Today the estate is managed by Armelle Carlsberg, Sabine Carlsberg, and her daughter Bérangère Tesserson, who look after the 19 hectares of vines and the entirety of the 75 hectare estate. Larrivaux is located in an area of the northern Haut-Médoc with more limestone in the soils, rather than clay and gravel exclusively. Known for its higher proportion of Merlot in the blend, the richness of the varietal gives way to cassis notes, while the Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc give the wine its earthy, mineral finish.
Here at Mission, we're always on the hunt for the next great $20 bottle of claret; the Bordeaux that can be opened and enjoyed on a Tuesday night, rather than added to the cellar. The great thing about the 2018 Larrivaux is that it can go both ways: the wine drinks incredibly well right out of the bottle, but it has the stuffing for another decade-plus of enjoyment. But don't just take our word for it, read the stellar reviews...
91 POINTS: WINE ADVOCATE - Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2018 Larrivaux rolls slowly, sensuously out of the glass with alluring notes of plum preserves, blueberry compote and crème de cassis with hints of candied violets, Chinese five spice and camphor. The medium to full-bodied palate coats the mouth with generous black fruits, supported by velvety tannins and soft acidity, finishing long and earthy. -Lisa Perrotti-Brown
91 POINTS: WINE SPECTATOR - Fresh and juicy, with a tasty mix of raspberry, cassis and plum fruit notes that are framed nicely by a dark tobacco edge. Tarry hint adds some bass to the finish. Really solid. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2029. -JM
90 POINTS: VINOUS - The 2018 Larrivaux did not suffer any mildew in this vintage. It has an expressive bouquet, a mix of red and black fruit intermingling with cedar and freshly rolled tobacco. The palate has pleasing precision and harmony, finer tannins than many of its peers and a very pretty, focused, quite vivacious finish. This is a classy Larrivaux that seems finely chiseled, and it should age with style. -Neil Martin