Chateau Beychevelle Saint Julien 2018
|Region||France, Bordeaux, St. Julien|
Barrel Sample. This is a smooth textured, ripe wine that is packed with a black fruit flavor and bold tannins. With its well-integrated structure and density of fruit flavors, it is surely meant for the cellar.
An unabashedly flamboyant, exotic wine, the 2018 Beychevelle possesses tremendous richness and raciness right out of the gate. Inky dark fruit, chocolate, licorice, spice, menthol and espresso infuse this sumptuous Saint-Julien with striking aromatic and flavor complexity. Soft contours and silky tannins add to its irresistibly sensual personality. Time in the cellar should help the new oak assimilate, but readers should be prepared for a full-throttle, heady wine.
The flagship 2018 Château Beychevelle is a more serious, concentrated, focused wine that still has that classic Saint-Julien purity of fruit as well as a wealth of fruit. Gorgeous notes of crème de cassis, chocolate-covered blueberries, violets, spring flowers, tobacco leaf, and cedar notes all emerge from the glass, and it's medium to full-bodied, with sweet tannins, moderate acidity, and a great, great finish. A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot, and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, it's one of the sexiest, most up-front and irresistible wines in the vintage. Don't let that scare you, though; it's going to drink beautifully for 2-3 decades.
Aged for around 18 months in barrel, 60% new and 40% second fill, the 2018 Beychevelle needs a fair bit of swirling to release classic notes of cassis, plum preserves and ripe blackberries, with emerging suggestions of unsmoked cigars, tilled soil and cedar chest, plus a waft of pencil lead. The medium to full-bodied palate is still very tightly wound, offering finely packed black fruit and earthy layers within a frame of firm, grainy tannins and just enough freshness, finishing long and mineral laced. This will need a good 5-6 years to come around and then will drink beautifully over the next 20+ years.
Violet and warm cassis aromas and flavors lead the way, melding with applewood, ganache, açaí and blueberry reduction notes along the way. Almost lush in the end, but there's a buried tarry streak giving it just a bit of grippy texture for contrast. Serious juice
Currants and blackberries with crushed stone and fresh herbs. Some flower stem, too. It’s full-bodied, yet tight and linear with firm, driven tannins. This needs four or five years of bottle age to open and come together. Try after 2025
Gorgeously brushed tannins with a smoked oak nose. This is excellent, firm and bright, layered and nuanced, gently inviting you in, with plenty of promise of life ahead. Has some austerity and although this is not in 2016 territory of 360-degree expansion, it is highly successful. A yield of 55hl/ha, with 50% of production going into the grand vin. 60% new oak.