Chateau Angelus Saint-Émilion 2018
|France, Bordeaux, St. Emilion
I loved the 2018 Château Angélus from barrel last year and it blew me away from bottle, epitomizing the new, fresher, more elegant style of the estate while still bringing classic Angélus richness and power. The 2018 is a blend of 65% Merlot and 35% Cabernet Franc that was brought up in new oak, with a portion of the Cabernet Franc in foudre. A vivid purple color is followed by a vibrant bouquet of blackberries, crème de cassis, crushed violets, spring flowers, and cedar pencil. Beautifully concentrated, full-bodied, and flawlessly balanced on the palate, it has gorgeous tannins, remarkable purity of fruit, and awesome length. I followed this bottle for multiple days and it only improved, picking up additional depth and richness, while never showing a hint of oxidation. Pure perfection, it's going to benefit from 7-8 years of bottle age and keep for 3-4 decades. This is a sensational, magical wine from this talented team, led by winemaker Emmanuelle d'Aligny-Fulchi. Comparing this to the more opulent 2005 and 2009 over the coming decades will be an incredible experience.
Very gutsy in feel, with lots of tobacco leaf, loam and espresso notes swirling around a core of steeped black currant and warm fig fruit flavors. The muscular finish is a jumble right now, but there's ample acidity coiled within. A wine that clearly wants to stand out from the pack. Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Score Range: 95-98
The 2018 Angélus is blended of 65% Merlot and 35% Cabernet Franc, aged mainly in oak barriques, 100% new, plus two new foudres. Deep garnet-purple in color, it struts flamboyantly out of the glass with stylish scents of black raspberries, boysenberries and Black Forest cake, plus nuances of rose oil, forest floor, dusty soil and cinnamon toast with a hint of cedar chest. The medium to full-bodied palate is carrying a little new oak at this youthful stage, framing the generous red and black fruits along with ripe, plush grape-skin tannins and seamless freshness, finishing long and spicy. Give it 5-6 years in cellar for everything to marry, then drink it over the next 20+ years.
The 2018 Angélus is striking. Cabernet Franc aromatics make a strong first impression. Vibrant and delineated, the 2018 is incredibly refined in every way. The move towards a bit less extraction really seems to let the purity of the fruit come through. The same is true of a reduction of oak. All the elements come together so effortlessly. The 2018 has all the richness readers expect of Angélus, with much more finesse and more overall vibrancy, a combination that works so well.
96-98. Barrel Sample. This is a dense, smoky wine, packed with ripe tannins and a line of fresh acidity that forms a fine contrast. It's a great wine that is rich in tannins while keeping elegance and finesse.