Château Canon [and Château Rauzan-Ségla] appear to have found a great follow up act to John Kolasa in new general manager Nicolas Audebert. His arrival at both properties for the 2015 vintage has certainly been well timed. He’s managed to arrive in an excellent vintage, to work some of the finest terroir in the world, in a vintage that has specifically favoured both St Emilion and Margaux. Lucky man. The Gods are certainly smiling on him and the properties [and clearly the Wertheimers too, who own them and fashion house Chanel]. Château Canon 2015 is a beauty. It is a wine with finesse and power but also with the most gorgeous, bright fruit tones, tones that define this vintage. Croix Canon, which comes from an 11ha parcel all of its own, is harmonious and extremely pretty at 2015.
Château Canon commands St Emilion’s limestone plateau. It is a beautiful spot to make wine. The terroir – limestone bedrock with clay – was particularly propitious in 2015. The clay stored moisture that enabled the vines to survive the extremely hot weather here in June and July without getting blocked [vines stop photosynthesis when they get roasted]. The eventual harvest here, after a cool August which thankfully provided much needed respite from the July heat [and much needed replenishing water], started on the September, 14 for the Merlot, completing by September, 25. The Cabernet Franc was harvested between September, 30 and October, 2. The wine will now spend 18 months in 70% new oak.
In his first vintage here, Nicolas Audebert has conjured up remarkable Canon from this terroir [and exciting things too in Margaux at Rauzan-Ségla – more on that later]. Just one word of advice Nicolas – if Karl Lagerfeld offers to design any new labels, you know what to say….
The following wines were tasted on Wednesday 6th April, 2016 at the château.
Croix Canon, St Emilion Grand Cru
Depth; legs; purple at edge; red fruits; nicely ripe and pretty; attractive mid palate with good depth of flavour; round and harmonious; lovely fruit; very beautiful. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2019-2028. 90-92+
Château Canon, St Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé
Very healthy looking in the glass; deep and purple at edge; legs; mineral tones, some chalk and wet rocks; opens up in the glass aromatically; perfumed, ripe and full; lovely blackcurrant and black cherry tones; layered and enticing; real finesse; beautifully balanced on the palate with lots of matter and substance; length. Spellbinding Canon. [72% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 42hl/ha, 70% new oak; 14.5% alc]. Drink 2022-2040. 96-98+