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St Emilion tasting notes G-Z

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Below are tasting notes [2014-1982] on sixty châteaux in St Emilion listed alphabetically G-Z – starting with château La Gaffelière. For those properties listed A-F click here. For more details on each property, click on the individual château profiles in the drop down menu.

Château La Gaffelière, Premier Grand Cru Classé B, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated colour; ripe plums and black fruits; certain purity; with some coffee at the back; quite pent-up; intense and tight on the palate; lots of extract; bit drying currenty but will settle. Long term La Gaffelière and will probably be very good down the track. Lots of chewy fruit but some freshness to the fruit. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 14.5% alc]. Drink 2022-2035. 91-93+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated look; elegant and supple fruit on the nose; vibrancy; little wet rock; mineral note; fine palate; substance; wet rock; little dryness but La Gaffelière always seems to fill out well; good purity; some spice and freshness on the finish. Length. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2020-2030. 5. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. 89-91+
  • 2013 Deep and saturated look; wet rocks and mineral notes; inky and quite deep; nicely handled on the palate; cool fruit with plummy tones; there is extract and material here but the wine hasn’t been pushed. Good effort for the vintage. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted April 2, 2014 UGC. Drink 2018-2030. 89-91+
  • 2012 Mid depth; wet rocks and minerals on the nose; more plumpness than expected on the palate; full-ish; good structure; not especially showy at this stage; more longer term prospect here. Classic La Gaffelière in that respect. Drink 2017-2027. 90+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and dense but healthy looking; mineral and wet rock nose; some liquorice beneath; pretty solid palate but there is plumpness here too; nice chew and good length. La Gaffelière is always pretty firm and masculine to me, not flamboyant. Dense. 90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc 90-92 UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Deep looking; stones and wet rocks; serious and dense; lots of fruit on the palate and extract too; not too dry on the finish. Nice length. Good effort from La Gaffelière. Drink 2016-2026. 90+ UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; lots of primary fruit; ripe and warm notes; some mealy hints; feels relatively simple; palate more gentle, fruit driven and nicely balanced; some spices and red fruits but overall straightforward. Good grip at the end. Good effort. 90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 50% new oak. 89-91+ [Second] Deep and saturated colour; little redder than purple at rim; more olives and slightly heavier nose; thicker, more chocolate and mocha notes; more earth; palate quite chunky, monolithic; some wet rock and a little dryness; not that bad but not the best. Chew and bite and a dry finish. Tasted blind at Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion at Chateau Canon 6/4/12. 87-89+
  • 2010 Deep and saturated colour; chunky fruit nose; red fruits; depth; chunky, chewy wine on the palate; lots of extract; some red fruits again; ink, wet rocks and a slightly dry finish. So so effort for such a good terroir. Am I always missing something here at La Gaffelière? 88/100 [Earlier] Deep and saturated; some density to the nose; some chalk, some plum and spices; good fruit here, chew and extract; tannins maybe a bit chunky. Pretty good effort. 89-91/100 6 April 2011 UGC [Second tasting] Deep arterial black; even tighter to the rim; nicely done; meaty quality here; feels big and brooding; strong aroma, powerful; very glossy palate, lots of material; quite lush and pretty well done; some warmth at the end. Very big and lots of [ripe] tannin. Lacks sophistication but has power. 91-93+/100 Tasted April 6 Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion
  • 2009 Red, deep; too much jam here on the nose; very figgy molasses style; more Amarone than St Emilion. Think they’ve got this wrong to my palate; too rasiny in feel. Not one of my picks. 2010 a much better bet here with more freshness. 88?/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Dense purple at edge; attractive and pretty fruit driven nose; red fruits; some oak beneath but nice; palate sweet ripe fruit, strawberry and red fruits plus a kiss of oak; later oak tannins come through and palate quite hard. [Later] Lighter toned and fresher; more attractive nose; palate still hard and tannins hard. Again difficult to judge I’m overwhelmed with tannin so potentially better than this score suggests. 86-88?/100
  • 2008 Earthy red; some tar, quite rich and figgy; concentrated palate, chewy and dense with lots of tannin; bit of leafy Cabernet Franc if I’m not mistaken; some warmth here. Not bad and a big chewy slightly old fashioned style. 87/100 UGC Oct ‘11
  • 2007 Deep and dark at centre; red fruits and some leaf; some stony, mineral notes with coffee at edge; stalky blackcurrant palate; chewy and a little foursquare; bit compact and tannin very dry on the finish. Tricky to judge. 84-86?/100 [Earlier] Mid red; bit dull; tarry element; more figs; less of the perfume and balance; bit tough at the end and hollow in the middle. Disappointing. 84/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
Château Godeau, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep and saturated; tight to rim; ripe liquorice notes and black fruits; fleshy and full; ripe and full; quite modern; some tar and black fruit notes; some chew and depth. Finishes a trifle short but will fill out. [95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 7ha]. 87-89
  • 2014 Deep and saturated look; little marzipan; some toast; nutty palate; bit confused this sample; fruit has descended; chewy and dry finish. [95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 7ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 81-83
Château Grand Barrail Lamarzelle Figeac, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; ripe; little acetone note; stalky and fresh; mid depth; not that grand; sturdy with some chew on the finish. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 15ha planted]. Drink 2019-2025. 85-87.
  • 2014 Mid depth; deep centre; vibrant rim; some spice/plum and sour cherry; little spice; quite spicy; fullish with grip and texture; some chew to resolve at the end. Needs to settle. Has plenty of elements. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 15ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle, 29 March, 2015. Drink 2019-2025. 85-87+
Château Grand Corbin, Grand Cru, St Emilion 
  • 2014 Mid depth; earthy red at edge; stalky; briary and red stone fruit; some spices and sour cherry; full palate; sour cherry and will fill out further; chalky notes; finishes with some alcohol and a little loose perhaps. [85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Tasted Angélus 29 March 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88
  • 2010 Deeply coloured; open sexy aromatics dominated by fruit tones – very lush – red fruits, strawberry jam; some spices at the back; full palate; lush redcurrant flavours; saturated in flavour with some tannin on the finish. Good effort. Drink now-2030. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’14.
  • 2009 Deep and saturated; red fruits, strawberry tones; lifted and very attractive and fruity; ripe entry, flesh, some spice and plum tones; pretty good effort this and feels fresh but also with ripe, lifted fruits – so you have your cake and eat it, so to speak. Nice substance on the finish. Extract and chew on the finish but in proportion. Very nicely done. Drink now – 2025. 92+ MW Institute Nov ’13
Château Grand Corbin Despagne, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deep and dark; nice minerality; satin and red fruits; some spice too; attractive; nice fruit; fresh and clean; some spice; should fill out well. Emphasis on the fruit. Clean finish. Good purity here. [75% Merlot, 24% Cabernet Franc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29ha]. Drink 2019-2028. 88-90+
  • 2014 Mid depth; chalk/mineral trifle whiff of sweat; little liqourice; mineral; elegant on the mid palate; lacks the stuffing compared with the best; modest, chalky flavours. Some spices on the finish. [75% Merlot. 24% Cabernet Franc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 84-86
Château Grand Corbin Manuel, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2014 Lighter red; red fruits; little briary notes; fresh; some sap and vigour; largely one dimensional St Emilion; some chew and dryness to the finish. Modest. [80% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2018-2022. 82-84

Château Grand-Mayne, Grand Cru Classé, St Emilion

  • 2015 Deep and dark looking; ripe, lifted black cherry and plum fruits; some spice and liquorice; very lifted style; sweet vanilla from the oak, gives a liquorice edge to the black fruits; the palate currently dry on the finish with some wood tannins but there is plenty of extract and matter. This will work in a lifted, extracted style of St Emilion. [75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 60% new oak, 14.5% alc]. Drink 2020-2030 90-91+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated colour; dark core; forward, ripe red fruits; some black cherry components; very glossy and ripe; not too jammy though a little; nice palate; extract but nicely handled; grip on the finish. Good effort here. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2019-2028. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. 88-90
  • 2013 Deep and saturated; purple at edge; liquorice, sweetness; lifted aromatics; glossy; some spice; reasonably attractive; quite tight and compact on the palate with oak poking through the fruit but there is extract that will cover it. A little compact. Tasted April 2, 2014 UGC. 85-87
  • 2012 Mid depth; cream and attractive aromatics with nice purity; plum and plush; attractive ripe fruit on the palate; soft and forward; really showing well; tannin soft and good-ish length. Ready to drink almost. Drink now – 2022. 91 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated look; ripe and lifted Merlot; some red fruits, oak and spices; attractive; real plummy tones to the nose; creamy palate; very ripe and plus; some oak tannin here but this should be good. Chewy finish. 80% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon 88-90 UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Deep and saturated; colour tight to the rim; more caramel on the nose; feels a little overdone; verging on the figgy and stewed; too thick and stewed on the palate for me. Finishes tannic and dry. Drink 2015-2021 85 UGc Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Thick and black looking in glass; legs; saturated to the rim; lifted red fruits and oak too; lots of jam; not unattractive; lots of ripeness; sweet and sexy full palate. Lots of fruit and jam but good effort and this really works for me. Tasted UGC 4/4/12. 89-91+
  • 2010 Thick and arterial in the glass; jammy, heady, lifted nose; feels a tad tired; ripe palate; inky and tannic. Feels extremely extracted and big on the palate. Overdone to me. 86?/100 [Earlier] Deep and dense looking; super ripe feel, jam and cherry; dense and chalky on the palate; some extraction and feels a bit raw. Finishes with grip and chew. Raw. Needs to settle. 85-87?/100 6th April 2011 UGC
  • 2009 Deep and dense; ripe and rich with liquorice tones; deep; thick and rich palate with lots of fat and chew; lots of extract, fruit, ripe tannin and alcohol. Big saturated styled St Emilion 90+/100 Oct ’11 [Earlier] Very deep and intense colour; black; ripeness – some figs, touch or marzipan; very ripe fruit; extracted style, big and tannic; Blimey! These are tricky to judge with all this tannin floating about. Warm alcohol on the finish. [Later] Jammy, quite ripe; bold extracted style. Struggling here to judge these wines as they are so tannic. 88-90?/100
  • 2008 Very dark looking and dense; quite resinous on the nose with a very ripe, rasiny note – very late late picked feel at any rate; some strawberry; palate soft and easy with some tannin. Very ripe, late picked extremely ripe style. Not sure this is me. 86-88/100 UGC Oct ‘11
  • 2007 Deep and fat looking in the glass; rasin and fig – on the superripe end of things; lifted and some VA notes; thick palate with black fruits and molasses and tar notes; OK in its way but not much fun for me. 85/100 [Earlier] Mid red; quite dark; tar and figs here; gutsy with some cream; palate dense and chewy; not flattering or especially seductive but with soft tannins and good concentration. 88/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
Château Grand Murailles, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2014 Attractive; depth; nice core; lots of fruit; lifted and attractive; very pretty black cherry; ripe strawberries; pure; sweet and ripe on the palate; oak noticeable but will meld and there is plenty of fruit here; supple tannins; lots of fruit here. [100% Merlot, 100% new oak, 2ha plot]. Drink 2019-2028. 89-91+
Château La Grangère, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Quite deep looking; inky but fruit tones verge on the vegetal; chocolate and coffee notes; dry and extracted palate; this is not me; extracted and chewy. I’d like to see this again after bottling. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6ha]. Drink 2019-2023. 83-84?
  • 2014 Mid depth; quite full looking; vibrant at edge; some cherry; plum; freshness; little spice; red fruits too; spicy easy and open St Emilion; I like this; plenty of red fruit and spicy tones; good stuff; nice texture; mid-weight St Emilion – spicy style. [75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc, 6 ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2018-2024. 86-88+
Château Haut-Sarpe, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2014 Mid red; sat at centre; VA lift and some red fruits; strawberry tones; full and chalky fruit; drying and feels a tad over extracted at this point; also quite warm; overall palate sensation is that it’s been overdone at this stage. May settle. Others to go for first. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 19ha]. Tasted Angélus 29 March 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 84-86
Château Jean Faure, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2014 Mid depth; earthy purple at edge; oaky; slight VA lift here; some satin red fruits; late picked style; kirsch and eau de vie; satin on the palate; lacks density in the middle; some chalk and wet rocks on the palate; loose finish. Tasted Angélus 29 March 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 85-87
Château Laplagnott-Bellevue, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; lighter at edge; stalky notes; some sour cherry; ballsy and stalky; bit reductive; sour cherry beneath; lacks concentration. Should clean up and fill out but little straightforward at this stage. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6ha]. Drink 2019-2023. 84-86
  • 2014 Mid depth; some spicy plum tones; chalky note and some mineral tones; freshness and spices; not full and rich but may fill out; not dry and extracted. Mi weight and some freshness. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 6 ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 84-86
Château Larcis Ducasse, Premier Grand Cru Classé ‘B’, St Emilion
  • 2015 Big and bold in colour; vibrant at rim; lots of depth; plenty of fruit; not pretty exactly but there is a suave quality to the fruit profile; nicely cool fruit; excellent quality; purity and ripeness without over doing it; real clarity; fresh and still nimble. This will fill out and will probably get even better than the score I’m giving. Let’s see. Lovely terroir adjacent to Pavie. [9ha in production, 37hl/ha, 87% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted Pavie Macquin 3/4/16. Drink 2021-2035. 94-96+ [Second tasting UGCB 6/4/16]: Mid depth; purple edge; stone and mineral note; opens up with ripe black fruits; plums and cherries; lots of extract and matter but extremely refined palate; needs to meld a fraction on the finish. Lots of matter and extract – but not extracted in style. Pure. Drink 2021-2035. 93-95+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated colour; bold and glossy; ripe and glossy; creamy fruit with that satin quality; cassis; ripe plums and cherries; some degree of voluptuousness on the nose; black chocolate and spices too; creamy; some oak to integrate; plenty of fruit; texture; lift; substantial and plenty of extract but glossy and voluptuous. Nice chew and saturated. Textured finish. [85% Merlot 15% Cabernet Franc alc14.1]. Tasted 3 April at Château Pavie-Macquin. Drink 2020-2035. 93-95 [Earlier tasting] Deep colour on nose; ripe and satiny nose; little strawberry; sublimated red fruits; depth of fruit on the palate; oak influence but integrated; this is substantial St Emilion; grip and freshness too. Very good effort. Length. Larcis Ducasse is fast becoming a favourite St Emilion of mine in the rich and ripe category. Drink 2020-2030. 5. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. 92-94+
  • 2013 Deep and dark at centre; legs; nice purity and minerality with a rich seam of fruit; deep and pure; good sweet entry with good fruit and a ripe palate; very correct with nice material. Mid-weight and good-ish length. Very good effort in the vintage context. Larcis Ducasse is an 11 ha vineyard next to Pavie on clay-limestone soils. Drink 2018-2030. Tasted April 4, 2014 at Pavie-Macquin. 89-91+
  • 2012 Saturated colour; little closed on the nose; less flashy and flamboyant than usual [seems to be suffering from bottle shock more than others]; palate caressing with nice plushness evident; density and chew on the finish but the tannins are nicely ripe. Needs a bit of time. Drink 2017-2027. 91+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and dense; very saturated look; ripe and thick aromas, very lifted; some minerals, wet rocks as well as black fruits – plums – and spices; ripe and pure; very attractive. Better showing here than at UGC. Chewy palate with lots of lush fruit and ripe flavours with lots of layers. Very ripe. 83% Merlot and 17% Cabernet Franc. 91-93+ Tasted Friday 12th April 2013 at Chateau Pavie Macquin [Earlier] Deep and saturated look; plummy, spicy nose; some jam; very lifted with oak influence; palate very ripe and sweet; jam notes; some warmth; little bounce at end. 83% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc. 89-91+ UGC Weds 10th April 2013
  • 2011 Deep and arterial; ripe, sweet, strawberry fruit; some forest floor notes; ripe and rich on the palate with lots of fruit and chew. Lots of depth and layers. Good effort in a modern style. Not overdone. Attractive now Drink 2014-2025. 90 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; red fruits, some new car interior notes and eau de vie; lots of strawberry fruit, nice; little dryness on the palate; oak tannin too. Palate feels unsettled and puckering. Needs to settle. Tasted UGC April ’12 . 84-87?
  • 2010 Deep and saturated look; lush, sexy and open – spicy plum and fruitcake notes; lush and forward palate with spicy plum tones; silk and satin quality here; wonderfully rich but just the right side of unctuous. Decadent certainly. Drink now-2035. 95. MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated look; sublimated nose; deep; lots of red fruits – strawberry, redcurrant; lift; ripe and layered palate with density. Thick tannins. Super concentrated style. Quite lifted notes [VA]. Will appeal to those who like their wines sublimated in a centrifuge. If they have balance that’s fine but think we’re lacking acid and freshness here. Have better recollections from primeur tastings. Disappointing showing certainly. 88?/100 [Earlier] Deep and saturated, really arterial in colour; very ripe, plush nose; lots of layers here; full; some jam, but very nice; palate ripe and full, lots of flesh and fruit; very, very god. Attractive and seductive. Some grip and chew at the back. Good length. Really nicely done. Seductive. 92-94+/100 6 April 2011 UGC
  • 2009 Deep and saturated looking; think and inky, some liquorice, tar; pretty lifted effort; some mocha and coffee notes; fleshy and ripe on the palate; blackcurrants; thickness too but remains attractive overall. Drink now-2029. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Mid red; ripe, jammy nose; pretty fat palate, lots of fruit and saturation and density but tiring in the end I’d reckon. Prefer their 2010. 88/100 UGC Oct ’11
  • 2008 Deep colour, legs; quite strawberry notes alongside super-ripe notes; good palate, very ripe and plummy with tannins at the end. Better than the La Tour Figeac, tannins less dry. 87/100 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc. UGC Oct ‘10
  • 2007 Mid red; attractive fruit nose; some raspberry and strawberry notes; moderate intensity; attractive sweet fleshy palate; soft finish with some acidity. Well balanced. Good. 88/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
  • 2004 Glossy red; lively at edge; spicy, lifted and attractive on the nose; tobacco and some tea but lovely lush, sweet fruit beneath; very mature, soft palate; quite round; tobacco and sweet plum fruit tones; spice and some menthol too. Very mature but wonderfully sweet and ripe. [3rd vintage under the Thienpont consultancy here]. Joyful. Drink now – 2020. 91. Tasted April ’14.
Château Larmande, Grand Cru Classé, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated look; earthy at rim; some raisin and jam on the nose; very ripe fruit; chewy and tannic on the palate; drying finish. Needs to settle. [65% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% alc]. Drink 2020-2028. 86-89
  • 2014 Mid depth; some purple at edge; ripe and spicy; earthy note; little compact and dry on the palate; dry on the finish too. Bit hard and disjointed on the day. Not sure where this is headed. [65% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2019-2025. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. 83-86?
  • 2013 Mid depth; some sweetness, spice, little menthol and black fruits; menthol and ink on the palate; quite compact and very masked but oak which makes for a puckering impression. Dry on end. Tasted April 2, 2014 UGC. 82-84
  • 2012 Mid depth; spicy notes; some undergrowth and red fruit tones; mid weight palate with more delicacy and obviously spicy Cabernet tones; little astringency at the back. Well balanced if it feels a little modest. 65% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. 87-88 UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Mid depth; looser at the rim than some; fresher style, some stalky blackcurrant and plum tones; spices too; briary, spicy palate and plummy some grip; leafy note too; chew and quite attractive. Tasted UGC. 87-89
  • 2010 Thick and dark looking; spice, liquorice, dark fruits; some sexy notes; thick palate, lots of extract and chew; wood tannin also; very big scaled and chewy with some bite at the end. Very bold and big. Works. 90 [Earlier] Deep and saturated; very attractive nose, lush and layered, some smoke, floral qualities too; palate dense, nice extraction and chew; ripeness here. Very good. Sweet ripe fruit actually pretty tannic and concentrated. 90-92/100 [65% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon] 6April 2011 UGC
  • 2009 Deep red; ripe and sense; some clear red fruits but not at all overdone and not sublimated in feel; freshness; layered and intense on the palate; perfume here with a pretty quality; mocha and chocolate too. This is very good indeed and despite the obvious ripeness manages to remain vital. 93+/100 UGC Oct 11 [Earlier] Dense colour; interesting looking; creamy and attractive nose; lots of ripe fruits and quite intense and layered. Palate thick and rich but at least tannins [lots] feel ripe and soft here. Lots of extract and material. Potentially very interesting if it settles down. 90-92+/100
  • 2008 Mid depth; lots of chocolate and mocha notes alongside ripe strawberry fruit, quite chunky in style and strong on the palate; good concentration, lush nice extract and chew without feeling overdone and huge tannins. Good. 88+/100 UGC Oct ‘10
  • 2007 Mid red; sweet fruit; some plums and spice; attractive palate; some density; plums again lacks a little mid palate and finishes a little short. Not bad though in the vintage context. 86-88/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
Château Larose, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Bold and dark; cream, liquorice and black fruits; stalks and some freshness; nice freshness actually; pure plums and ripe cherry notes; I like this; nice emphasis on the fruit; some spice too; good balance and not too chewy in my book; appetizing and digestible. [66% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28ha]. Drink 2020-2028. 90-92+
  • 2014 Mid depth; deepish with vibrant edge; clean and chalky aromas; little modest in comparison with some of the above; chalky palate; lacks the unctuous of some of the above. Ok and the fruit my come out better later. Bit dry on the finish. [66% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27.5ha]. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 85-87. [Earlier note] Deep and saturated too; slightly looser at edge; chalk and wet rock notes; some red fruit and lift; red fruits some satin; lots of chew and extract here. [68% Merlot, 26% Cabernet Franc, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27ha]. Tasted Angélus 29 March 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88
Château Lusseau, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep core of colour; saturated look; attractive nose; complexity; layers; sophisticated nose; plums, spices; some darker fruit tones and olives; nice texture on the palate; plenty of extract; nicely handled; little oak to integrate. Not flamboyant but has concentration and texture. Property of Pavie’s technical director. [70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35hl/ha, 13.8% lc, TA 3.35 pH 3.72 60% new oak]. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93+
  • 2014 Deep at centre; earthy red at edge; sweet; some menthol and spices; red fruits and a little strawberry jam; ripe entry; some red fruits; little black cherry and spicy plum [high toned]; quite fresh palate with grip at the end. Tight. Spicey finish. [70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13.2% alc, 3.48TA, 3.65pH, 50% new oak; 2 ha property]. Tasted Pavie 3 April, 2015. Drink 2019-2026. 87-89+
Lynsolence, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deeper; more saturated look; some gloss; ripeness; little lift; some intensity to the aromatics and ambition; some chew and depth; little chewy and extracted though; some coffee; quite strong acids and elements; needs to meld; some forward traction and plenty of ‘matter’. [100% Merlot, 2ha planted]. Drink 2019-2026. 87-89
  • 2014 Deepish; saturated at centre; full, creamy aromatics; some fatness here; quite chewy and extracted on the palate; flesh but still lean in feel in the middle; needs to fill out. Lean and austere finish. [100% Merlot, 2.5ha]. Drink 2019-2025 83-85
Château Laroque, Grand Cru Classe, St Emilion
  • 2003 – Dark black, earthy red at rim, sweet plumy, spicy nose with some liquorice, violets, roses and oak – perfumed and pretty. Palate soft and open with damsons, plums, and mocha notes. Really attractive – finishes a trifle short but very impressive. 89/100 Sept ’07
  • 1994 – Deep colour; dark at centre; full nose little dusty at first; blew off to reveal sweetness and ripeness; gutsy; palate with concentration and good grip; tannic edge; bit extracted and better with food. Would like to see this in a richer vintage. 84/100 Oct ‘99
Château Magdeleine, Premier Grand Cru Classe, St Emilion
  • 2011 Deep, fresh looking at the edge; legs; pure, some spice, plums, minerality some violent perfume; fresh fruit palate; summer compote – concentrated but not sublimated or overdone; freshness here; good acidity; appetizing and zesty; nicely balanced. Has vigour but also composure. Goodish length but overall vibrant and zesty. 90-92 [Second blind at Premiers] Deepish; some fatness, Merlot, density; stones and minerals; some eau de vie; feels firm; earthy notes; sweet buy quite extracted on the palate; feels a little stretched but grippy and probably enough fruit there. Spices. Grippy finish. Tasted blind at Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion at Chateau Canon 6/4/12. 89-91
  • 2010 Deep arterial black; tight to rim; luscious opulent nose but with some real delicacy; ripe and layered; very satiny and pure palate; great entry; silky and refined; lovely poise; terrific balance; surprisingly elegant palate in fact. Very fine. Finishes well. Good length. 92-94/100 Tasted April 6 Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion.
  • 2007 Deep and dark central core; red fruits; feels fresh, some thickness and richness; some red strawberyy fruit too; black fruits on the palate; pretty rich and also thick but retains surprising harmony. Good length. Nice grip and bite and this works. Excellent effort. 90/100 ‘11
  • 1994 Good colour, not quite to rim; tight, minerally nose; palate taught with sweet ripeness. Maybe lacks a bit on the middle palate [the vintage] but with good balance. 88/100 Assemblage tasted at Chateau Petrus Oct ‘95
  • 1978 – Mahogany red; dusty old wine flavours, no complexity or fruit; palate similarly faded. Too old. 75/100 June’04
Château Magrez-Fombrauge, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; red purple edge; satiny and saturated aromatics; quite sexy; red fruits; nice and open; easy red; soft and quite seductive; not pretentious but works well in a sexy, forward style. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 1.7ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 88-90+
  • 2014 Mid depth; dark core; full attractive aromatics; nice fat fruit with chalky notes; palate is gutsy; with depth; will probably fill out further; some chew and grip on the finish. Needs a few years to settle. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc]. 2017-2025. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 86-88
  • 2013 Mid depth [pretty deep]; earthy purple and tight to rim; not unattractive nose; quite full; some plums and black cherry tones; good aromatically; full initially and then a little pinched at the end; some chew to the fruit and depth. Clipped in some ways with some dryness. Needs to settle. Drink 2016-2024. Tasted blind Rive Droite 30.3.14. 85-87
  • 2012 Deep and saturated; round and nutty [oak]; some resin; quite clean palate; cut of acidity; fresh and sinewy but with sufficient body. Not a bad effort. If it fills out 86-88 Cercle Rive Droite April 7, 2013
  • 2011 Deep and dense; purity but witha  seam of oak; saturated nose; jam again, ripe and thick; layers of fruit; red fruits; similar tones on the palate; chewy finish. Pretty dense. Lots of fruit in a modern, uplifted red fruit style. Tasted blind at Cercle Rive Droite. 88-90+
  • 2010 Deep and saturated black; sweet and ripe nose; some marzipan, spices; thick and sweet ripe entry; very soft and very unctuous; tannin but in check. Very good and very concentrated and sublime. Tannic twist at the end and some grip. Very good. 91-93/100 Tasted 6 April  Le Cercle Rive Droite
Château Magnan La Gaffelière, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; lighter with looser meniscus; little liquorice and sour cherry; more elegant and less depth than former. Light-ish. Lose finish which lacks concentration. [75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10ha]. Drink 2019-2023. 84-86.
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; dark at centre; full aromatics; plums; spicy notes; little grip; chewy finish. [75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 84-86
Château La Marzelle, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deep and extracted looking; solid and sturdy; some dark chocolate; grippy by comparison to some; nice fruit here emerges though; fresh, pretty good in a fresher style. [74% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; dark at core; cool and pure; very nicely handled aromatics; fat marzipan plummy qualities; but also tight and contained really nicely; full and very concentrated; like this; has chalky notes but also nicely done; has length and nice tightness on the end but overall very linear and accomplished. [75% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2020-2030. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 91-93+
Château Monbousquet, Grand Cru Classe, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated; reddish edge; opaque centre; ripe black fruits and spices; glossy; polished; lifted aromatics; some dark chocolate and mocha tones too; very integrated though; lush entry; nice texture again; compact but plenty going on; nicer balance here in 2015; much better wine than 2014 – still serious but more ripeness and greater generosity on the mid-palate – and not overdone on the finish. Excellent stuff. [60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon 35hl/ha, 14.5% alc, TA 3.25, pH3.78 70% new oak]. Drink 2020-2035. 92-94+
  • 2014 Deep colour; earthy purple at rim; spices, minerals; crushed rocks; plums, morello cherry come out; some fragrance and perfume; some density but also sweetness and texture to the fruit; has freshness; little tight perhaps on the palate currently; proportional; spices, minerals and plums on the end; dryish on the finish but should fill out. Elegant style of Monbousquet. [60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12.86% alc, 3.2TA, 3.84pH, yield 35hl/ha, 60% new oak]. Tasted Pavie 3 April, 2015. Drink 2020-2030. 89-91+
  • 2006 Another deep extracted looking wine with depth; arterial; figs and super ripeness on the nose, some lifted notes with a whiff of VA; layers yes but a bit too tarry and thick; palate softer than the previous two but then the tannins set in [I’m feeling a bit jaded now]. I’m afraid that I find these wines so extractive that at present I find them almost undrinkable. I’ve no idea how they will develop. 88?/100
La Mondotte, St Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deep and saturated look; opaque at core; seductive; all velvet and satin; black fruits but difficult to define – more a sense of overall seduction – little dark chocolate and kirsh notes; satin fruit; lovely palate; like ample Grand Cru Burgundy [except it’s not often this good J]; lovely texture and depth – actually very intense – but you just don’t notice it. Lovely length too. [85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 34hl/ha, 80% new oak, 14.2%, 33 days cuvasion]. Drink 2020-2030. 96-98+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; opaque; glossy, satiny nose; substance beneath; minerality too; liquorice and lift; satin fruit on the palate; very elegant and voluptuous; caressing fruit; subtly jam packed with fruit in fact; lots of extract here; takes you by surprise; little oak on the finish to integrate. Excellent length. Prodigious and deceptively powerful. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 13.9% alc, 100% new oak, 4.5ha estate. Yield 18hl/ha, harvested 27/9-10/10]. Tasted Canon-la-Gaffelière 1st April ’15. Drink 2019-2032. 94-96+
  • 2013 Deep and saturated looking; vibrant earthy edge; quite fat and unctuous almost; layers of plush fruit; spices and fruitcake notes; some wet rock too; quite opulent palate; has delicacy and will mature nicely; good fruit and depth overall. Nice extraction. Incredibly low yields. Menthol on the finish. [85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc 8hl/ha, 100% new oak]. Drink 2016-2030. Tasted 2/4/14 at Canon-La-Gaffelière. 91-93+
  • 2012 Deep and saturated look; real perfume lift with violets; very seductive; lots of black fruit tones; big palate but balanced and harmonious; extremely lush and loaded with flavour; lots of length on the finish. Big on flavour but manages not to feel overblown. 94-96+
Château Mond0rion, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep; quite saturated; lifted; ripe fruit; some sweetness; nice sweet entry; nicely done; good compact texture; feels complete and not over-extracted. Some chew on the finish. Good solid St Emilion. [79% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc, 12.4ha planted]. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89+
  • 2014 Mid depth; red fruits, some marzipan notes; chalky note; some spices and texture; needs to fill out; dips a fraction but goodish matter at the end. [79% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc, 12.44ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 83-85
Château Paradis, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; bold at centre; purity; wet rocks; some menthol; ripe Merlot; satin and red fruits; wet rocks; extract but kinda works; chalky finish with extract. [67% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5ha]. Tasted Angélus 29 March 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 85-87
Château du Parc, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep and saturated looking; loaded and concentrated nose; intense; jammy; loaded with fruit but not drying; nice inky palate; ripe and saturated but works; cool quality but also has composure. Good effort. Chewy finish but this needs a few years. Should prove really good. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5ha]. Drink 2020-2030. 89-91+
  • 2014 Mid depth; reddish at edge; some fruit cake; little Pontefract cakes [liquorice for the non English!]; red fruits; fat entry on the palate; plenty of extract and matter; quite impressive; full and plummy in the ripe spectrum; nicely balanced between the fruit and the texture. Extracted to a degree but should settle ok. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2018-2025. 86-88+
Château Pas de l’Ane, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; fractionally looser; more on the sour cherry spectrum; little stalky; still has freshness; clean and pure fruit; ripe; stalky; quite high tones with quite a lot of bite; should settle in an elegant style. Nice fruit potentially. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 5ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 86-88
  • 2014 Big saturated and bold colour; fat and full; creamy plum tones; feels very full; some wood; quite big; marzipan and chalk notes; bold; then come the tanins; chewy and rather hard [wood tannins] on the finish. May settle. [55% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Franc, 3ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2019-2023. 84-86
Château Patris, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deepish; close to edge; purple edge; attractive sweet fruit; some boiled sweets; clean; attractive and fresh on the palate; some perfume; this will be enjoyable St Emilion. Excellent stuff. [95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11.4ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 88-90+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated colour; tight to the rim; very nicely pure fruit; blackcurrant and black cherry notes; fresh and strong; black cherry fruit flavours with good concentration; had nice acidity and freshness; grip on the finish. [95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11.4ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89+
Château Pavie, Premier Grand Cru Classe ‘A’, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated colour; dark; tight to the rim; sweet ripe black fruits; intense but also has a beauty; layers; very plush; some mocha notes; very focused seam of fruit on the palate; concentrated but not in the least jammy; this is excellent. Lovely focus on the palate; real concentration but precise; structure and depth; lots of length on the palate; very long indeed. [60% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Franc, 18% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14.5% alc, 36 hl/ha, TA 3.50 pH 3.72 80% new oak]. Drink 2025-2040. 96-100
  • 2014 Deep and saturated colour; black at centre; floral tones on the nose; very nice Cabernet elements; purity; layered and pretty dense; very good plummy fruit beneath; minerally and textured on the palate but has a roundness and sweetness too the fruit; glossy; excellent fruit quality; dense; extract; lots of matter; this feels impressive; mineral; lots of matter; density; plums and black cherry; strong tannins on the finish. This will work out very nicely. Masculine and bold. [60% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Franc 18% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14.2% alc, 3.85TA, 3.59pH, 34hl/ha 80% new oak]. Tasted Pavie 3 April, 2015. Drink 2022-2035. 93-95+
  • 2011 Deep, saturated colour; ripe marzipan notes; thick and big Merlot; quite unctuous; lots of extract and tannin on the palate – wow! Lots of fruit admittedly but very chewy tannic finish. Must be Pavie? Amazing fruit but extreme tannin too. How will this settle? 70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc & 10% Cabernet Sauvignon 70% new oak. Tasted blind at Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion at Chateau Canon 6/4/12. 89-91?
  • 2010 Deep and very saturated look; ripe and smoky, quite jammy and dense; lots of fruit and concentration; some pruney notes; feels very ripe, but lacks the complexity and freshness of the best; almost a rasiny note; clean palate entry; quite rasiny, primary fruits; dense and tannic; increasingly tannic; blimey too tannic and extracted surely? Overdone, extremely drying at the end. Maybe 90-92?/100 if it settles, but no idea how to rate this properly. Tasted April 6 Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion.
  • 2006 Similarly deep; intense, tarry notes with figs, coffee and extract; palate sweet and big initially and very big with density – then come the tannins like a runaway train. Very extractive and inky feel. Blimey these tannins are big and chewy. No idea how this will turn out so being generous. 88-90?/100
Château Pavie-Decesse, Grand Cru Classe, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated look; ripe fruit aromas; nice lift; black fruits and spices; glossy and attractive; rich entry; black fruits; plenty of matter but some elegance in the middle; nice matter and texture; plenty of matter. Needs time. Lots of material and body with plenty of glycerine and texture. Excellent length too. Wow! [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 18hl/ha, 14.65% alc, TA 3.32, pH 3.66 100% new oak]. Drink 2023-2035. 95-97+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated colour; opaque at centre; very ripe and full; some jam; spices and menthol; plum jam and a little prune; full of extract and matter; brighter feel on the palate; very low yields here; dense and sublimated style on the palate; texture; spices; dense; matter; chewy finish. Impressive concentration and weight of matter. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 13.7% alc, 3.6TA, 3.53pH, yield 18hl/ha, 80% new oak]. Tasted Pavie 3 April, 2015. Drink 2022-2032. 92-94
  • 2006 Very deep and arterial looking in the glass; very ripe notes on the nose, prunes and intense, little like Canon-La-Gaffeliere; almost like we are somewhere down in the Languedoc here; some smoke too; lots of fruit and extract and richness here – and tannins too. Very extractive style. Very dry tannins, lots of them, on the finish. Where will this go? Weighs in 14.5 on the alcohol scales too… 88-90?/100
Château Pavie-Macquin, Premier Grand Cru Classe ‘A’, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deeply coloured; saturated; pure fruit; minerality with some plums and ripe qualities; unadorned by oak; real clarity to the wines. Like the purity here. Attractive finish – very long on the palate with real purity. Length. Purity and length. [13ha in production, 40hl/ha, 84% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Tasted Pavie Macquin 3/4/16. Drink 2022-2035. 94-96+ [Second tasting UGCB 6/4/16]: Deep and saturated look; substantial wine; powerful; certain minerality here; full and structured palate; lots of extract but freshness too; not tired or over-worked. Needs ten years. Vin de garde St Emilion. Drink 2025-2035. 93-95+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated look; purple at edge; manages to be fresh; strong and deep; powerful aromas from the fruit [importantly]; black fruits; spices; black cherry; plum; dark chocolate; sweet attack from the fruit and nicely integrated oak; very nice mouthfeel; powerful wine. Lots of extract and matter; but comes together neatly on the finish. [85% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Tasted 3 April at Château Pavie-Macquin. Drink 2022-2035. 93-95 [Earlier tasting] Deep and saturated look; full and substantial aromas; quite bold and big on the palate; plenty of matter and fruit; nicely handled; balanced yet bold; ripe and supple tannin but plenty of extract here; this will last the course; big and full St Emilion but not over-cooked in the slightest. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. Drink 2020-2032. 92-94
  • 2013 Deep and glossy looking; very ripe full and inky; some ripe plum tones and menthol notes; sweet seam of fruit; very layered and precise on the nose; spices; sweet ripe entry on the palate; quite lush and plummy; very attractive palate; ripe, rich and attractive overall with chocolate notes; good bite on the finish. Great success. Pretty lush overall. [85% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Tasted April 4, 2014 at Pavie-Macquin. Drink 2028-2030. 90-92
  • 2012 Deeply coloured; some liquorice and camphor notes alongside creamy plum tones; lots of depth to the nose; layered; creamy and substantial palate with lots of depth and potential; pretty fat in the middle; very nicely extracted overall and polished as you would expect. Powerful wine. Nicely handled. Drink 2016-2028. 93+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated, tight to the rim; very pretty, lots of black fruits, chalk and spices; menthol and oak influence too; very rich and attractive; lushness here again; ripe and concentrated palate with some tension and minerality; lots of body and richness. Pretty chewy finish but lots and lots of fruit here [tannin too]. 92-94+ Tasted Friday 12th April 2013 at Chateau Pavie Macquin [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; more mineral tones, some wet rocks and also strawberry jam notes; very ripe and lifted aspect; quite worked and oaky palate; little dryness but the finish is sweet and I’d expect it to settle. 85% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon. 89-91+ UGC Weds April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Deep and saturated look; ripe and rich; plums, spices and hints of marzipan and liquorice; big and bold on the palate – lots of lush fruit; rich. Chewy tannin but good bite keeps things positive. 91+ UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; strawberry red fruits; ripe, jam; lifted; sweet fruit on the palate, some red notes; liquorice – then come the tannins. Very dry and over-extracted on the palate. Spicy, herbal notes from the oak. This feels overdone to me. Fruit may soak up the wood? 80% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon. 80% new oak. 86-88?[Second] Deep and saturated; sour cherry notes; some minerality; iodone; quite broad and deep but quite brooding; oak and sour cherry; later opened out a bit to reveal some riper notes; sweet entry, ripe palate – redcurrants – tannin and oak but not accented. Should develop well. Feels a Merlot dominant blend. Nice bite and depth. Tannins a little furry. Tasted blind at Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion at Chateau Canon 6/4/12. 90-91
  • 2010 Deep and dense; full and open with lots of fruit on the nose; great palate with lots of black fruit and liquorice flavours; red fruits too – strawberry fruit tones – plenty of fruit here and tannin [ripe]; needs a bit of time to meld but has all the elements. Drink 2017-2035. 94 MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier] Deep and saturated looking; red fruits; some marzipan notes; thick and open nose; palate ripe and opulent; lots of extract and tannin here. Dry finish. Potentially pretty good but needs some time. 90+ UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and dense; very aromatic, seductive and pretty; oak and density; black fruits liquorice, menthol, some violet too; sweet attack, dark fruits, molasses and liquorice, but not too over-the-top. Nicely done. Certainly seductive. More oak on the finish. Will meld. 92-94/100 [85% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon] 6th April 2011 UGC [Second tastings] Deep and saturated; rich, ripe but nicely judged; whiff of marzipan; very ripe and attractive; big bold and ripe on the nose; thick; not unattractive; rich and cake like; very plush palate; tannins here, quite extracted; but freshness too; dense extract and material; little more extracted than some; coffee and oak. Thick and rich. Warm too. 94-96+/100 Tasted April 6 Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion.
  • 2009 Deep and saturated; very deep indeed; fat, sweet and lifted with black fruits, plums with some prunes; thick and ripe and saturated with lots of material; unctuous but not too thick; tannic at the end. Rich and heady but with drive and purpose. Drink now [almost] – 2030. 92+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and dense; really saturated look; red fruits, very ripe and seductive style; open and lots of jam and sweet ripe fruit on the palate – almost makes it too much for me; this is really veering towards an end of the scale; chewy finish suggests a lot of [ripe] tannin too. Will be seen as brilliant by some, for me it’s close to overdone. Again much prefer the style of 2010. 88-90?/100 UGC Oct ’11
  • 2007 Mid depth; slightly stone fruit nose, some red fruits and strawberry notes; opens up; some floral notes too; palate attractive; sweet fruit; less extracted than Troplong Mondot but very good balance. Nice. 90/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
  • 2004 Deepish – still dark at centre; red at edge; ripe, spicy plum aromatics which is just hitting its stride; black fruits; nice intensity on the palate with gloss, weight, plum and quite dense; tobacco, spices, leather tones; very nice density and chew. More chew on the finish. Mature now but has a good years of life ahead. Shows just how nicely these wines age. Drink now – 2024. 93+. Tasted April ’14.
Château Péby Faugères, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2014 Mid depth; good and healthy looking; open red fruits, tomato plant hints; not unattractive; contained; chalky; some extract; nice chew and texture; needs a bit of infilling but this may happen with time; some chew on the finish. [100% Merlot, 7.45ha]. Drink 2017-2023. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 87-89
  • 2013 Mid depth; lose at the rim; sweet and ripe; simple fruit aromas; ripe plums and spicy notes [bit of fig/prune] on the palate; well balanced and not overdone. Some chew to the fruit and the tannin but this works ok. Tasted Canon-la-Gaffeliere 2/4/14. Drink 2018-2025. 85-87 [other note] Vibrant in the glass; purple edge; some cream and violet lift; some depth and ripeness; wood and density but lacks flesh in the middle. Chewy and overoaked relative to the fruit. May yet settle but currently disjointed and not much fun. Drink 2018-2024. Tasted blind Rive Droite 30/3/14. 83-85
  • 2012 Deep and saturated; oak resin, sublimation and intensity; real VA lift [not me this]. Very rich palate with lots of oak and extract; very BIG and new world. Dry finish despite the ripe and rich fruity. Too worked and too much oak. 86-88? Tasted blind at Cercle de Rive Droite Sunday April 7, 2013 [Later] Deep and saturated colour; inky, resin; unctuous fruit; red fruits and lots of oak; very ripe fruit, jammy; chewy finish with coffee and mocha tones. Pretty exaggerated style. 100% Merlot 89-91 Cercle de Rive Droite 10th April 2013
  • 2011 Deep and thick colour; lots of nice fruit, lively – maybe a little jammy but ripe; some liquorice but also that intense resinous note you get with late picked, low yield wine; palate jammy and superripe in feel; dense; dips a bit. Chewy but reasonable tannins. Style rather than terroir driven but works surprisingly well. Tasted blind at Cercle Rive Droite. 88-90+
  • 2010 Deep and arterial; sweet strawberry notes; red fruits; intense and sublimated; black cherry; very attractive palate; lots of extraction but lovely sweet fruit and excellent length. Only a 1000 cases made. 90-92+/100 Tasted 6 April  Le Cercle Rive Droite
Château Petit Faurie de Soutard, Grand Cru, St Emilion
  • 2009 Deep and intense; ripe Cabernet Franc tones; attractive; spicy, leafy notes; with good structure. Generally quite full and creamy and really nicely done. Drink now – 2025. 90+ MW Institute Nov ’13
Petit-Figeac, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; purple at edge; fresh looking; lovely Cab freshness – blackcurrants; lift; vivid palate; with freshness but also composure; nice texture and elegance; very nice wine; elegant but with depth; certain modesty; nice fresh finish. Composed. [32% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% new oak]. Drink 2020-2025. 91-93+
  • 2014 Deep colour; vibrant edge; purple; cool blackcurrant fruit; pretty; very attractive now; fruit and spices; some black cherry and raspberry tones; extract on the palate; nicely poised; good acidity; freshness; mineral tones and positive finish. Proportional too. [50% Merlot, 44% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 35% new oak, 12-14 months max]. Drink 2019-2025. 88-90
Château Pindlefleurs, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; colour lacks some of the depth of others; stalky plum notes; spices; attractive; fresh; little on the reductive side; nice St Emilon; spicy plum and ripe qualities; some acid and balance; nicely done. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 17ha planted]. Drink 2019-2025. 88-90+
  • 2014 Mid depth; little translucent; toasty; some red fruits; little undergrowth; nice red fruit here; well done; soft palate; not over extracted though a modest wine; easy soft finish. Lightish but all there in that respect. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 17 ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2017-2022. 85-86+
Château de Pressac, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Dark and arterial; inky and intense; sublimated style; concentration; some dark and bitter chocolate notes; some smoke and toast; ripe black fruits; sublimated style; rich; full; nicely extracted; plenty of black fruit and warmth at the back. Works very well. [65% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc, 11% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Pressac, 2% Carmenere, 36 ha]. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; colour tight to rim; sublimated and fat on the nose; very concentrated; toasty and sublimated style; ripe and pure fruit; very attractive plummy fruit which is wonderful; this wine has extract and matter but also a degree of balance despite the levels of concentration. Lots of chew and matter. Excellent. [65% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc, 11% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Pressac, 2% Carmenere, 36ha]. Drink 2020-2030. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 90-91+ [additional note] Deep and saturated colour; very tight to rim; black fruits; bit of fig; meal; liquorice; ripe and sweet; sweet and fat; liqourice and black fruit tones alongside alcohol; big if a little cloying. Tasted Angélus 29 March 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88
  • 2013 Deep and saturated looking; colour bold and tight to the rim; new oak influence; nutty with some plum and black fruit tones; feels unctuous in style; palate saturated in toasty oak and fruit submerged; nevertheless there is fruit there but it’s been a bit over worked. Hopefully will settle. Tasted Angelus 2/4/14. Drink 2016-2023. 84-86+[Earlier note] Deep saturated colour; attractive, lifted aromas with black fruits behind; some cream and some sour cherry notes; big extract on the palate – chewy with currently puckering acidity and tannin; pretty disjointed currently. [70% Merlot, 16% Cabernet Franc, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Malbec]. Drink 2018-2024. Tasted blind Rive Droite 30/3/14. 82-84?
Château Le Prieuré, Grand Cru Classé, St Emilion
  • 2015 Mid depth; earthy edge; savoury saline edge to the nose; freshness; cherry notes; clean; fresh palate; easy plum and Merlot style; light and lacks some concentration. Some joy at the end and soft tannins. Not dry. As easy drinking St Emilion. May fill out further in barrel. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 6.2ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 86-88+
  • 2014 Mid depth; briary fruit, some red fruit notes and satin; little stalky note too; nice clean fruit on the palate; nicely linear; this could be good; purity and clarity; not sublimated or overly oaked but nicely pure. Has good texture and finish. Like this and it should be congratulated for its modesty and precision. Drinkable St Emilion. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 6.24ha]. Drink 2018-2028. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 88-90+
  • 2013 Deep and saturated; less vibrant at the edge; also attractive; fraction more oak and trifle sturdier [Cabernet Franc influence?] but this works aromatically; earthy and meal/cereal note but good and interesting; cool palate; purity and weight; nice depth; has a lean edge. Works for me. Tasted blind Rive Droite 30/3/14. Drink 2016-2024. 85-87
  • 2011 Deep and dark; earthy tones at edge; more fruit; blueberry; summer pudding; nice and pure; some perfume too; concentrated palate, tannin but really so much fruit here. This should be good. Tasted blind at Cercle Rive Droite. 87-89+
Château Puy-Blanquet, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; earthy/red purple; sappy aromatics; vinous; creamy palate; fresh and sappy but with texture and cream on the middle; like this; appetizing St Emilion; nice freshness and twist. Fresh, appetizing, and hopefully inexpensive St Emilion. Twist on the end. [95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 20ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 86-88+
  • 2014 Healthy colour; saturated red; tight to the rim; lovely vibrant pretty fruit; very jolie; ripe plums but fresh and supple; very juicy and packed; sweet entry; nice fruit; soft and pure and juicy; some sap and vibrancy but packed with fruit and freshness. A great buy and will be delightful early on I reckon. Soft tannins but nice freshness on the finish. Sappy and reasonably vigorous on the finish. Nice freshness. Tasted JP Moueix, 1 April, 2015. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89+
Château Quinault l’Enclos, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; purple at edge; floral notes; quite perfumed; ripe cherry tones; some black fruit notes; nice glossy palate; sweet and soft entry; elegant; some freshness – harmonious; very soft tannins; nice balance; very elegant style. Fine finish. Nice minerality. Appetising. [69% Merlot, 19% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Cabernet Franc, 14.2 alc 50% oak in 450 litre casks]. Drink 2020-2028. 90-92+
  • 2014 Mid depth; earthy purple; fresh and pretty on the nose; perfume and lift; attractive; ripe fruit on entry; nicely structured with appetizing acidity; quite fresh and elegant overall. Nice finish. Will fill out. [69% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted Cheval Blanc, 1 April, 2015. Drink 2020-2028. 88-90+
Château Quintus, Grand Cru Classé, St Emilion
  • 2015 Mid depth; purple at edge; lovely ripe fruit; precise in aromas; layers and delicacy; some perfume; little chalk note; nice minerality to the wine also; depth to the fruit; nicely extracted but quite traditional in structure; little tightness in the middle but has real elegance. Some length to the wine. This will fill out so I may be underrating this currently. [76% Merlot, 24% Cabernet Franc, 15.2% alc]. Drink 2020-2030. 92-94
  • 2014 Deeper; earthy red at edge; vivid; glossy fruit; stone fruits; pretty Cabernet Franc; ripe; creamy and voluptuous; nice full St Emilion; has acidity and freshness too; some flesh; very supple and harmonious palate; spicy tones; extract and length. Very nicely polished. Best Quintus yet. [69% Merlot, 31% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted La Mission Haut-Brion. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93+
  • 2013 Deep and glossy looking; purple at edge; deep; quite layered and impressive on the nose; prettiness; very polished; some oak – good entry and some material here. Remains a little angular and not that fleshy. Grip and acidity. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 13.1% alc, 3.51 pH]. Now includes recently acquired Chateau cru classe L’Arrosée, Quintus itself formerly Tertre-Daugay. Tasted 31/3/14 at La Mission Haut-Brion. 87-89+
  • 2012 Deep and saturated; purple edge; very poised and focused nose; pretty and perfumed; lots of layers and depth here; much more layered than 2011; sweet entry, ripe fruit with a satin quality; real finesse and a substantial improvement on 2011 all round. Very good length. Delicate and silky. 89% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc 92-94 Tasted April 8, 2013 at Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion
  • 2011 Deep, saturated look but vibrant; legs; minerality, plum, some spice very composed; depth and actually pretty big ripeness; cool palate, lovely Cabernet Franc freshness; good density, concentration here; quite fine and sappy fruit; oak on the finish. Good length. Quite fine. Newly acquired by Domaines Clarence Dillon. 91-93+
Le Dragon de Quintus, [2nd wine of Chateau Quintus]
  • 2015 Mid red; solid colour at core; earthy purple/red edge; lovely black cherry and ripe plum aromas; clean and pure; minerality; [76% Merlot, 23% Cab Franc, 1% Cab Sauv]; freshness and elegance; feels medium weight and has a degree of delicacy; little eau de vie on the finish. Mineral. [76% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Franc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2019-2025. 89-91
  • 2014 Mid depth; purple at edge; fresh briary and brambly fruit; some bubblegum; prettiness; little oak beneath; some intensity; acidity and freshness; quite nervous and high toned; elegant; lacks a bit of stuffing on the finish but may in-fill. [77% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2019-2025. 86-88
  • 2013 Mid depth; vibrant edge; some perfume; quite mannered; some plum tones; good entry and chew; some tannin and a little hollow. Finishes short. May fill out. [56.5% Merlot, 30.5% Cabernet Franc, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12.95% alc, pH3.6]. Tasted at La Mission Haut-Brion 31/3/14. 85-87
  • 2011 Vibrant purple colour; nice depth to the nose; some spice; quite polished; soft easy entry, nicely ripe and soft; good purity and precision; fresh finish. Soft and easy. 79% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc. 88-90 Tasted April 8, 2013 at Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion
Château Ripeau, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deep and dark; dark chocolate and sour cherry; kirsch; quite tight palate; some freshness; taut and tight. Rather dry finish currently. [65% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 85-87
Château Roc de Boisseaux, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep-ish; tarry note; concentrated on the nose; liquorice; black fruits; intense – almost new world in style; menthol and blackcurrant jam; big; sweet entry; lots of matter and sweet ripe fruit; still soft; very attractive; nicely done wine. Perhaps falls away a little on the finish. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 8ha plot]. Drink 2020-2025. 89-91+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated colour; stalky briary fruits; some undergrowth; red fruits; briary fruits on the palate; some spice; lots here; again feels pretty high in alcohol; satin fruit on the finish. Little dryness on the very end. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 8ha]. Tasted Angélus 29 March, 2015. Drink 2017-2023. 88-90
Château Rol Valentin, Grand Cru, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep; tight to the rim [fractionally loser]; little geranium; some density; full but a little streak of earthiness here somewhere; nice flesh; chew and chocolate on the finish; fresh and earthy style. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 7.3ha planted]. Drink 2019-2025. 86-88
  • 2014 Deep and saturated look; ripe fatness; some sweetness too; fuller if a little straightforward; full entry; extract and matter; full; chewy; bit of tannin to resolve and settle but good acidity here. Chewy at present but potentially rather good. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 7.3ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2018-2026. 87-89
  • 2013 Deep and saturated; tight to rim; menthol; layers – feels reasonably substantial; some red fruits too. Attractive – and you can’t say that for many of the wines today. Palate more higher toned with acidity marked at present. Real mouthful at present. Needs to settle. Drink 2016-2023. Tasted blind Rive Droite 30/3/14. 84-86
  • 2012 Deep and dense; some purple at the edge; some plums, red fruits, prunes and cherry notes; chewy palate, oak influenced; some spice and marzipan; enough flesh to cover the bones I reckon. 86-88 Cercle Rive Droite April 7, 2013
  • 2011 Arterial looking; big legs; ripe, thick and dense but not unattractive; sweetness here; some perfume; palate dense rich and supple but with concentration and tannin on the end. Good. Tasted blind at Cercle Rive Droite. 87-89+
  • 2010 Deep and dense; super-ripe notes; strawberry jam and some raisin; very jammy; palate sweet, spicy and ripe; lacks a bit of freshness and feels very late picked. Alcoholic and lacks grip. 86-88/100 Tasted 6 April Le Cercle Rive Droite.
Château Sanctus, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; solid colour; ripe; some gloss; minerals and wet rocks; quite a solid effort; bit dry; think this will work out well in the end. Like the clean fruit tones and purity though. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 4ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89
  • 2014 Deep and saturated looking; unctuous and concentrated aromatically; little nutty note; full, nutty and concentrated; los of extract and matter; wow! Very chewy and inky at present. May yet settle. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 4ha]. Drink 2018-2028. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 85-87+
Château Sanonnet, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deep and arterial; some violet lift and plummy tones; ripe and sweet; nicely composed on the nose; ripe plums; caressing; pure; nicely done; lots of fruit – I like this style. Has density but also purity. [85% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7ha]. Drink 2019-2026. 90-92
  • 2014 Deep and saturated look; opaque at centre; saturated aromatics with some nutty qualities; saturated in flavour but also with nutty notes; clear concentration; grip and tannin at the end. Minerality here. [85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 7ha]. Drink 2018-2025. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 87-89
Château La Serre, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 More vibrant at edge; purple edge; some minerals; chalk; ripe cherry; black chocolate; little wood on the nose which needs to integrate; little woody at present on the palate; fruit is there and will soak up the oak which dominant at present. Has flesh etc. Dry finish. Needs to soak up the fruit and settle. [70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 7ha.] Drink 2020-2027. 88-90+
  • 2014 Deep colour; healthy look; vibrant earthy purple at edge; little more black cherry; some fragrance; spices; pretty again; little VA lift; more oak influence; sweet ripe fruit and some fragrance from the oak but this should meld; again very charming and perfumed; more serious in ambition; oak needs to integrate. Should be good. 87-89+
Château Soutard, Grand Cru Classe, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated colour; ripe black fruits, lifted but with life; nice creamy cassis notes; this works well; no over-ripeness; good palate with depth and some minerality; will meld well. Good wine. Inky finish. Lots here. [62% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Malbec]. Drink 2020-2030. 91-93+
  • 2014 Mid depth; ripe aromatice; some jam and red fruits; lift; cooler palate; depth; more in the middle than expected; substance; extract; this should settle nicely. Good effort. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. Drink 2020-2028. 87-89+
  • 2013 Deep and dark; plums, spices; lifted and attractive; pretty; palate quite cool, not overdone; little ink and plum with spices; chew on the finish so needs to settle a bit. [63% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Malbec] Tasted April 2, 2014 UGC. Drink 2016-2025. 85-87
  • 2012 Very deep and saturated; deep aromas; plums, spices; pretty unctuous; oak too; full and lush entry; lots of fruit; not over-extracted but pretty big. Some chew at the back. Should be very good. 89-91+ UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Mid depth; some plums, spices and cooler, fresher and better for it; plummy palate, attractive and some spice; not at all overdone. Others here could learn from this freshness and purity [Soutard St Emilion’s new recruit to the UGC]. This could be good value. Nice purity and not overdone. 70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc. Tasted at UGC. 90-91
  • 2010 Deep and thick looking: ripe and saturated aromas, quite seductive; layers here and lots of fruit; saturated fruit in keeping with the nose; lots and lots of fruit; very saturated but tannins feel nicely handled. Very good effort. 91+
Château Soutard Cadet, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep and dark; little herbal and geranium note; lighter; some sweet fruit; less worked but rather simple; this will be ok in a simple St Emilion type way. [90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 2.1ha]. Drink 2019-2023. 84-86
Château Tauzinat L’Hermitage, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deeply coloured; purple at edge; tarry; quite ripe; little reticent at first; little dry and austere; will work out but not the ripest rendition of St Emilion. Some chew and chocolate at the back. [70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8.6ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 84-86
  • 2014 Mid depth; red at edge; fresh fruit notes; vivid; some stalky notes; fresh; vibrant styled; bit chewy; may fill out. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 9.3ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 83-85
Château Tour Baladoz, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; pretty clean plum fruit; sweet and ripe entry; enjoyable; full clean and ripe; some spices; some wet rocks; works well. Modest but enjoyable. [70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. 8.6ha]. Drink 2019-2025. 86-88+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated in glass; tight to the rim; nice vivid pure fruit tones; this is good, black fruits, black cherry and blackcurrant tones; multivitamin note; palate has nice fruit and polish; this is good stuff; some liqourice but also nicely interwoven oak. Nice finish with good chew and depth. Good St Emilion. [70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8.6ha]. Drink 2018-2028. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 88-90
Château La Tour Figeac, Grand Cru Classe, St Emilion
  • 2015 Mid depth; fresh at edge; nice fresh Merlot aromatics; plums, spices and a little leaf/spice from the Cab Franc; mid weight palate; appetizing style; fresh too. Good effort. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 14.5%]. Drink 2020-2028. 90-92
  • 2014 Bold colour; purple at edge; wet rocks; minerals; depth apparent; ripe entry; cherries and black fruit tones; nicely balanced on the palate; spices; good texture; has harmony. Good effort. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. Drink 2019-2030. 89-91+
  • 2013 Mid depth; saturated look; some VA lift, vanilla notes; spices and some black fruits; inky and slightly medicinal note; chunky and chewy palate but not too dry overall. Will be OK when it settled. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted April 2, 2014 UGC. 2016-2025. 85-87
  • 2012 Deep and pretty saturated looking; ripe, lifted red fruit aromatics; strawberry tones; little undergrowth note with some liquorice; forward palate; wine already enjoyable. Soft tannins. Drink now-2022. 89 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; more red fruits; strawberry and redcurrant jam; confiture; concentrated palate; spices and more plummy tones now; little short on the end compared to La Gaffelière [tasted immediately before!]. 80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc 87-88+ UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Deep and saturated; open and full; opulent in fact; red fruits [strawberry]; quite big and saturated with fruit on the palate; still manages some grip with chew and acid on the finish. Drink 2015-2025. 88+ UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated colour; lots of red fruits; some cream; summer fruit compote; nice pure red fruits on the palate; depth. Little dryness at the back but should come good. Tasted UGC. 87-88+
  • 2010 Deep and saturated looking; very jammy – strawberry and red fruits tones – lifted; very lush, sweet style; forward and unctuous which kinda works in its coquettish, sexy way. Drink now-2030. 92+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated look, tight to the edge; thick aroma, red fruits, some freshness with sour cherry, fruit cake and plum. Ripe and thick palate with lots of depth of flavour. Lots of material and extract. Chewy finish. All the elements and they work. 90+ UGC Oct ’12  [Earlier] Mid depth in terms of saturation, but that’s by comparison; ripe spicy nose, some fruit cake, chalk and rock; attractive nose; nice sweet entry, violet fruit tones with spices and density and more mineral/rock notes; very nicely done. Good grip and balance. 90-92+/100 6 April 2011 UGC
  • 2009 Deep and saturated look; some stalky notes, plum and spices; very full; ripe and thick palate with lots of saturation. Lots of material but also lots of tannin. Feels a little over-extracted in the end. Let’s see how this develops. Drink now – 2025. 87. MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deepish colour; strong nose with ripe plums; easy plush wine on the palate; very attractive with plummy fruit, leafy tones and concentration. Maybe not the most complex, this is wonderfully enjoyable and delicious St Emilion. 90-91+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Dense, solid and intense; some alcohol and whiff of VA; lift; clean palate, quite precise; some dry tannins again here; lacks roundness and generosity. Chewy and intense. 88?/100
  • 2008 Dark, mid red, some strawberry, some resin and intensity; palate quite sweet initially but then feels rather dry and extracted at the end. Tannins very dry and over-extracted feel here 84-86?/100 UGC Oct ‘10
  • 2007 Deepish colour; ripe, opulent and sexy on the nose; upfront and lifted; thick and dense and pretty tannic on the palate. Too much extraction here and feels very dry. 86?/100 [Earlier] Mid red; gutsy rather raw fruit; some leaf at edge; not terribly exciting. 82/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
Château La Tour du Pin, Grand Cru, St Emilion
  • 2011 Deep and dark; purple at edge; briary spicy nose; some perfume; some minerality; summer compote notes too; sweet/sour fruit on the palate – sour cherry – quite elegant; not overly extracted. Nicely done. 75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc Tasted 4/4/12 at Cheval Blanc. 90-92+
  • 2010 Deep and dense; tight to the rim; cream, ripe, some fresh plum, good concentration hgere; fleshy and intense; some elegance almost; good mid-palate; nice weight and extract. Good material and extract. [85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, Alc: 13.9] 91-93/100 Tasted at Chateau Cheval Blanc 4 April 2011
Château Trianon, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Mid depth; ripe and attractive; spices; quite forward; clean and attractive; sturdy but nicely handled fruit; elegant; nicely done. Soft and easy St Emilion. [80% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Carmenere]. Drink 2019-2024. 87-89+
  • 2014 Mid depth; dark core; toasty oak and some black fruit tones; toast on the palate; some extract and then the tannins; quite inky tones; has plenty of depth and structure but also plenty of oak and feels worked. Needs to meld in elevage and bottle. [80% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvognon, 5% Carmenere, 10ha]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2018-2028. 84-86
Château Trimloulet, St Emilion Grand Cru
  • 2015 Deep; little wood and chocolate; little dumb but density here; solid; chewy St Emilion. Inky finish. Some dryness. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 15.6ha]. Drink 2019-2023. 84-87
  • 2014 Deep-ish mid depth; ripe black currant and plum; minerality too; bright; nice sweet entry; purity; texture on the palate again; nice wine; some chalk texture; nice grip and chew. Fine finish. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted 3 April at Château Pavie-Macquin. Drink 2019-2025. 87-89+ [Earlier note] Mid depth; opaque core; juicy aromatics; purity; some strawberry lift; fresh and vibrant; chalky notes; acidity; quite a fresh example; should settle quite nicely. [75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. Drink 2018-2022. 85-87
Château Troplong Mondot, Premier Grand Cru Classe ‘B’, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated look; lots of ripe, sublimated fruit tones on the nose; black fruits, liquorice notes; kirsch; palate is sweet and ripe; black fruits; extremely concentrated palate; liquorice and mocha notes on the palate; very big indeed; chewy finish and dry on the end. A super extracted, extremely ripe rendition of St Emilion. It’s big. It’s point scoring. It’s Troplong’s style – just not quite mine. Others will score even more highly I’m sure. [90% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc, 15.5% alc]. Drink 2022-2035. 93-95
  • 2014 Black and dark looking; colour tight to rim; saturated fruit on the nose; layered; sublimated black cherries and plums; nice entry on the palate; lots of fruit; saturated and full; sublimated; boatload of extract and matter – this is a big mouthful but tannins [plenty of them] caressing. [90% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc, 14% alc]. Tasted UGC 1st April ’15. Drink 2020-2035. 92-94
  • 2013 Super deep and saturated look; thick nose laden with black fruits, liquorice; very saturated and sublimated; layers; dense and inky palate, quite chewy and dense and pretty dry and extracted on the finish. Hope it settles. [90% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted April 2, 2014 UGCB. Drink 2020-2030. 87-89
  • 2012 Deep and saturated colour, tight to edge; plump fruit tones on the nose; fresh fruit on the palate; quite chewy and well structured but plenty of fruit here; pretty intense feel overall but not overblown. Think I prefer this property in fresher vintages [like 2012] than the blockbuster years when it feels really rather over-endowed. Drink 2017-2027. 92+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Very dense and deep looking; very lush and unctuous nose but quite pure; layered and extremely plush; palate very full with lots of extract and all the oak soaked up here. Very big and fat but there is some freshness too which means the wine can do up its belt. 90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc. 93-95+ UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Deep and saturated; very ripe, lifted and intense on the nose – menthol, spices and lots of extract evident; lots of matter on the palate and tannin on the finish. Very puckering on the finish. Have they overdone this in this vintage? Feels like it will need time to settle at the very least. Let’s see how it develops. Drink 2018-2030 88? MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and dark; red fruits, some rocks and spices; some lift; oak too along with marzipan notes; thick palate, chewy and dense. Lots of tannin on the finish. Like this estate, on the extremely rich side of things, but just how will this 2011 settle? 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc. Tasted UGC. 88-90 [Second] Deep and saturated; arterial; more oak influenced than some here; thicker, initially feels a little plodding; less vibrant than some; later more jam and summer compote notes; palate actually pretty good; blackcurrants, some spice – quite chewy – but lots of fruit here. Overall good effort. Tasted blind at Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion at Chateau Canon 6/4/12. 90-92
  • 2010 Deep and saturated; ripe and very full; some lift; figs; very sweet; chocolate; very full and chewy palate with lots of fruit and a big structure. Dense [16 degrees]; chocolately finish. Very big and saturated style – but readily drinkable? Drink 2018-2035. 93? MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; lifted, sexy nose; very opulent indeed; satiny red fruits; nice palate – plums, spices and ripe red fruits; lots of saturated fruit; structure beneath and chew on the finish. Typically big and seductive but strangely not over-powering. This is how you do it! 94+ [Earlier] Arterial and saturated; very ripe and concentrated as you’d expect; sublimation of a wine; lots of extract and ripe sweet fruit; concentrated and layered; real intensity and chew. Pretty hefty tannin count too. This is big and thick but really ripe – sweet ripe and very pure – with some grip and bite at the back. 94-96/100 6 April 2011 UGC [Second tasting] Deep and saturated, tight to the meniscus; quite ‘cool’ nose; deep and pure; some marzipan and a whiff of alcohol – nevertheless seductive; feels cool but with some menthol and spice; very brooding and deep; polished; satiny palate, real perfume and verve; density but wonderful fruit here; extremely concentrated and tannic but there is sweetness of fruit and some grip here to balance. 96-98+/100 Tasted April 6 Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion.
  • 2009 Deep and saturated; very dark in the glass; thick and figgy; palate brighter than the nose suggests; ripe and thick with lots of structure; still feels very thick and very chewy. Now in no-man’s land a little. Was impressive at primeurs and after bottling but this sample feels overly thick and chewy. See how it goes, give it time. 2019-2035. 90-92? MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier] Deep and dense; lifted and very vibrant nose; really very good; blackcurrants and ripe fruits; ripe and layered palate; lots and lots of richness without the jammy qualities of some; palate is very, very big and alcoholic [plus 15%] but this actually works – and extremely well. 94+/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Inky black, very dense; quite viscous in the glass; wow, fabulous nose of sweet, ripe fruit; very seductive with lots and lots of new oak but packed with ripe fruit too; Big, dense, chewy palate, lots and lots of fruit but sweet ripeness. This is BIG and not at all for the fainthearted. Thick and tannic with alcohol on the finish. It is 15 degrees alcohol. Defies gravity but actually works – if you like your wines huge, this is it! 92+/100
  • 2008 Dense, very saturated look; legs; perfumed and intense with lots of extract; strawberry and some chocolate and mocha; intense palate with lots of fruit and concentration; very pent up and big – wow such concentration with lots of alcohol. Very big and alcoholic style – an enjoyable glass or two but I couldn’t imagine finishing a bottle! 92+/100 90% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon UGC Oct ‘11
  • 2007 Good colour; quite intense; attractive plumy nose; soft with well integrated oak. Quite seductive. Dense palate; well done; quite chewy but not over extracted; more powerful than the Trottevieille but not overblown. Very good. 92+/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
Château Trottevieille, Premier Grand Cru Classe ‘B’, St Emilion
  • 2012 Deep and healthy looking; colour tight to rim; beautiful spicy Cabernet Franc tones on the nose; fresh palate with elegance; positive; fruit qualities attractive too; a lightness and elegance here overall. [49% Merlot, 48% Cabernet Franc, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon]. Drink 2016-2026. 91+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep looking; Cabernet Franc influence on the nose [as ever]; spicy and nice delicacy and freshness; palate is quite tight but there is a focused seam of fruit; pretty focused maybe a little angular on the finish. 49% Merlot, 48% Cabernet Franc, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon 89-91+ UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Mid depth; glossy look; attractive lift – Cabernet leaf from the Cab Franc; palate feels closed and grippy at present. Will settle but feels more compact and far less exciting than the great successes here in 2009 & 2010. Drink between 2016-2026 87 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep, purple at the edge; fine elegance, freshness from the Cabernet Franc, attractive and cooler. Floral tones. Compact palate, more left bank feel; acid and life. Medium bodied. Should be good but less knockout than 2009/2010 here and the palate needs to settle. 50% Merlot, 48% Cabernet Franc 2% Cabernet Sauvignon.100% new oak. 88-90 [Second] Little wet rock; minerals; some sawn wood; little less impressive than first; stalky blackcurrant note; blackcurrants again on the palate, spices, quite tannic profile; a little dry; needs to come together. Reasonably dry finish. Coffee and mocha tones. New oak on the end. Tasted blind at Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion at Chateau Canon 6/4/12. 88-90
  • 2010 Deepish – red at edge; slightly reductive note at first; blew off; blackcurrant tones; spices; elegant palate which works well in a nicely balanced style. Good length. Drink 2016-2030. 91+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep colour; Cabernet Franc freshness here; blackcurrants, chocolate; attractive and appetizing; pretty dense and layered palate; chewy but lots of richness and depth; cool and attractive more-ish St Emilion – in case you thought that wasn’t still possible. This looked wonderful during the primeur tastings and is still a delight. 93+ UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep red; not the most saturated; thick and concentrated, some smoke, black cherry, some stalk, attractive and thick, some red fruits too – strawberries; good palate, chew and fruit with excellent density. Lots of extract and grip too. Very good. Real finesse here the Cabernet Franc influence. 92-94+/100 6th April 2011 UGC [Second] Saturated and deep; legs; smoky tones, graphite and earth; more minerality here; more intense too; very tight and layered and intense; very fine wine here; excellent focus and precision on the palate; very, very precise; density too; precise, focused and intense. Fabulous length, simply goes on and on. Quite tremendous. 96-98/100 Tasted April 6 Groupement de Premiers Grands Crus Classes de Saint-Emilion.
  • 2009 Pretty saturated look; spicy Cabernet Franc; blackcurrants, cereal notes and attractive delicacy; blackcurrants on the palate with real ripeness; lots of tannin now emerging but good-ish flesh. This has shut down and needs five to seven years to open up. Drink 2017-2030 92+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Mid depth; lovely ripe Cabernet Franc nose; wonderfully attractive and extremely fresh; really ripe quality to the fruit; great palate and extremely fine. In the Figeac style of St Emilion and quite wonderful. Up there with Trottevielle’s equally fine 2010. Casteja is understandably very proud of this wine. Sadly not much is made, even less in this vintage cut by devastating hail. Nevertheless a great effort. 94+/100 UGC Oct ‘11
  • 2008 Glossy, mid red, some purple at edge; attractive perfumed nose; lots of oak but there is fruit here too; blackcurrants and plums beneath; palate quite chunky and intense with lots of tannin and oak. Quite enjoyable. Despite the oak and the extraction there is still freshness here. 88-90/100 50% Merlot, 47% Cabernet Franc and 3% Cabernet Sauvignon.UGC Oct ‘10
  • 2007 Deep and dark; satiny and ripe Cabernet Franc nose; blackcurrants on palate and some density and layers here. Chewy wine with density. Goodish effort. 87+/100 [Earlier] Mid red; some development; nice attractive nose; well done; some plums. Quite satiny palate; fine with good potential and attractive now; not overdone. Good stuff. Attractive. 90-92/100 UGC tasting Oct ‘09
  • 2006 Dense at the middle, tight to the edge; some stones and minerals, quite firm and smells like it will be gutsy and muscular; some open qualities on the palate, attractive, fruit, coffee and oak; lots of extract infact and guts, acid and tannin. Quite a mouthful as the nose suggested. Fruit, acid and tannin here. Structured and muscular. Could be good. 88-90/100 MW Institute Nov ’10.
Château Valandraud, St Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Arterial; colour right up to the edge; doesn’t get any denser or more viscous than this; tears slowly creep down the glass; lovely aromatics; very sexy and very full – could a wine be fuller, more pent up and lush I wonder? This wine is from another planet – Planet Hedonist; but there is precision here too – a wonderful seam of concentrated fruit on the nose; full attack on the palate with layers of ripe plummy, concentrated sweet fruit; not jammy in the slightest though; concentrated and quite phenomenal; weight and extract are really considerable but the tannins so soft and the extraction expert; lots of coffee and mocha tones on the finish; very big but somehow defies the gravity of its own proportions. Remarkable. Drink 2022-2035. 96-100
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; opaque; very dark and saturated; tight to rim; layered and tight – but a ball of the glossiest fruit; seam of sublimated black cherry and ripe plums; quite tight; layers here; fruit so glossy; creamy; pure; saturated; but not over extracted; creamy; black fruits; plums; very creamy and sexy indeed; chewy and dense but with very ripe tannins; not at all dry; full and glossy. Extract on the finish. Brillant effort in the Valandraud style. Tasted Jean-Luc Thunevin, 3 April, 2015. Drink 2019-2030. 94-96
  • 2013 Deep and saturated; colour tight to the rim; very pure and creamy; plums and black cherry notes with nicely interwoven oak; quite fabulous aromatics; coffee and mocha tones at the back; big palate, concentrated and full; exotic notes with plums, spices, fruitcake tones; there is density and matter here with chew on the finish. Something of an assault on the senses and almost from a different vintage but there is the hallmark freshness of the year. Drink 2018-2030. Tasted 2/4/14 J-L Thunevin. 91-93
  • 2012 Deep and saturated and very arterial in colour; lifted; ripe and very lush; very bold statement; extremely lush palate; quite sublimated style; chewy; very big indeed but extracted very nicely; tannins, many of them, seem extremely fine. Lots of wood on the finish presently with a fair bit of chew. Very good length. Very unctuous style but retains freshness. 15,000 bottles made. 100% Merlot 94-96+ Friday April 12 at Jean-Luc Thunevin
Virginie de Valandraud [2nd wine of Château Valandraud], Grand Cru, St Emilion
  • 2015 Deep and saturated; opaque at centre; satiny fruit; layered and sexy; quite sublimated in style but I like this; some coffee and mocha tones integrated into the fruit; ripe entry; full; satiny aspect again – which makes it quite a contrast to the grand vin; attractive and no hard edges or drying aspect on the palate; freshness on the finish – though the alcohol is clearly considerable [I forgot to ask]. Chalk v cheese with the Valandraud grand vin. A beauty. Drink 2020-2030 93-95+
  • 2014 Deep and dark looking; tight to the edge; earthy blackcurrant; cool black cherry; plummy fruit; very nice seam of layered glossy fruit on the nose; ripe entry; creamy; integrated; textured and complete; creamy; ripe and creamy mid palate; tannins considerable but well managed. Chew on the finish but also freshness. Chocolate notes. Tasted Jean-Luc Thunevin, 3 April, 2015. Drink 2019-2025. 91-93
  • 2013 Very deep and saturated; thick and dark; perfumed and layered aromatics; plush and saturated; this has excellent focus; very attractive; Sweet entry, very unctuous with spices, plum tones and substance; lots of matter here and gloss. Chewy finish but not dry. Good effort. Drink 2018-2025. Tasted 2/4/14 at J-L Thunevin. 89-91
  • 2012 Deep and saturated; dark and arterial looking; colour extremely tight to the meniscus; lots of violet lift and very lush again; ripe and rich palate with plenty of matter here and also fair bit of oak; lashings of everything; lots of density. Big wine. 80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, 35,000 bottles produced. 90-92 Tasted Friday April 12 at Jean-Luc Thunevin
Château Villemaurine, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deep and saturated look; purple edge; ripe, glossy black fruits; some mineral tones on the nose; attractive palate – composed with layers. Nice texture. Well-judged St Emilion that will be digestable and enjoyable. Good stuff. [80% Merlot, Cabernet Franc 20%]. Drink 2020-2030. 90-92+
  • 2014 Deep and saturated look; stalky black fruits; ripe and full aromatics; saturated style; sweet ripe entry to the fruit; juicy; attractive soft style; not too extracted; nice freshness [acid] too; red fruits; forward style that works. Nice length. Good effort. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted 1st April ’15. Drink 2019-2028. 88-90 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; tight to rim; opaque at centre; stalky fruit; depth; some red fruits beneath; spices and red fruits on the palate; satin and spice finish but with some astringency. Tasted Angélus 29 March, 2015. Drink 2017-2025. 86-88
  • 2013 Mid depth; sweet and ripe; some spice and menthol; blackcurrants – ripe with spicy oak characters; spicy palate; mid weight with some intensity; elegant effort. [80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted April 2, 2014 UGC. 85-87 [Earlier note] Deepish looking; earthy purple at edge; ripe notes, some jam, menthol and spices; ripe entry with some jammy fruits; fraction stretched in the middle; chunky on the finish. Chewy and chunky St Emilion. [85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2018-2024. 84-86
  • 2012 Dense colour; nice attractive fruit qualities; lively and layers of fruit; nicely balanced palate with good fruit profile, nice structure and ripe tannin. Drink now-2022. 89+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; dark; spices and cake like nose; sweetness from oak; some plum tones and lift; creamy palate; freshness too; pretty lush overall; nice tension and interest here. Chewy finish but will work well 89-91+ UGC Wednesday April 10, 2013
  • 2011 Deep looking; ripe merlot aromas; feels almost fat if a little one dimensional at this stage; big on the palate; quite fresh and ripe but very, very dry on the end. Over-extracted and chewy, it may settle but currently disjointed. Drink 2015-2021 85? UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; nice savoury edge to the nose and lots of depth of fruit evident; earthy fruit on the palate; quite dense and chewy; attractive though; lots of depth and nice bite on the finish. Good effort. 90+
Château Yon Figeac, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé
  • 2015 Deepish; more on the cherry and bubblegum spectrum; clean; some cherry; quite extracted but there is enough fruit; still a bit drying on the finish; chewy. This should fill out. Bit chunky at present. [81% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot, 24ha]. Drink 2020-2026. 87-89
  • 2014 Deep and saturated; purple at edge; fresh; something chalky about this; some spice and menthol tones; elegant palate; fresher and more simply styled; some spice; some chew and dryness on the end but should work out ok. [83% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 4% Petit Verdot, 25ha]. Drink 2017-2022. Tasted blind Grand Cercle 29 March, 2015. 85-87

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