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Tasted blind at the Southwold Bordeaux tasting. The 2012 Figeac put in a marvelous showing under strict blind conditions and it has clearly blossomed in bottle. It has an immediately engaging bouquet with vivid blackberry and raspberry fruit, wonderful mineralité and fine delineation. This is very composed, with a touch of graphite that almost takes you towards Pauillac rather than Saint Emilion. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, well-judged acidity, harmonious and lively with commendable precision towards the finish. This is a sophisticated and well-crafted Figeac that appears to be on an upward trajectory. Drink: 2022 - 2045
This is a very strong effort from this great terroir. They finally seem to be making stricter selections and picking slightly riper fruit, thereby avoiding the vegetal underripe tones of the past as well as dilution from a lack of any selection. The 2012 Figeac (performing much better from bottle) has a dense ruby/purple color and a beautiful nose of graphite, blackcurrants, and spice box, followed by a medium-bodied, elegant yet still concentrated and authoritative style of wine. This is a beauty, and the great terroir that has existed for centuries comes through beautifully. Give it 3-4 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 20 years. Drink: 2018 - 2038
The dark ruby/garnet/plum-colored 2012 Figeac is somewhat angular (no doubt because the Cabernet Sauvignon was not as ripe as it could have been), but it possesses an attractive, cedary, underbrush, Christmas fruitcake, black cherry and black currant-scented nose. Elegant and medium-weight with good purity as well as a slightly narrow finish, it is a very good to excellent Figeac that should drink well for 12-15 years.
Several months ago the big news in Bordeaux was that Madame Manoncourt, the incredibly charming, vibrant, 80-year-old owner of Figeac, decided a make-over was necessary for this estate to regain its proper place in the market as well as elevate its quality, which has been mixed since their last great vintages of 1964 and 1970. Michel Rolland was brought in as the consultant, although he only did the assemblage (blending) for the 2012. He will have full control over the 2013.
Michel Rolland made the blend of the 2012: 40% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon (the 2010 was one-third of each grape variety.) It has a dark purple colour. The nose is bashful at first, well defined with expressive Cabernet Sauvignon imparting subtle cedar and mint aromas. The palate is medium-bodied with an edge entry defined by slightly chalky tannins. There is a touch for Schezhuan pepper at the tip of the tongue and to be honest, it is missing a little weight on the mid-palate due to the growing season. It has a little more harmony on the finish than previous year, maintaining the fresh Figeac style, but with more composure. Bodes well for the future. Tasted April 2013.
Beautiful aromas and flavors of ripe blackberries with cacao and chocolate notes. Full body, lovely acidity, soft and juicy tannins and a long, fruity finish. Figeac is back in style. Needs two or three years to soften. Best after 2018.
Deep dark cherry colour. Bright, cedary and blackcurrant aroma. Slightly herbaceous but not overly so. Very gentle tannins, velvety already. Super-suave and approachable, just fresh enough. (I tasted this blind but extended the drinking dates when I saw at the end of the tasting that it was Figeac!) (JH)
Deep purple colour. A rich nose of black cherry, blackcurrant and black pepper. The palate is intense, with lots of ripe black fruits, wood smoke and toast from new oak, and grip from ripe tannins. This is a smoky, intense wine which will need time in the bottle before opening, but has superb concentration and balance.
One of the great names and terroirs of Saint Emilion whose wines exude class and sophistication rather than raw power. Notoriously difficult to judge when tasting en primeur because of the unusually high Cabernet Sauvignon component. The blend is 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Cabernet Franc this year - a rare example of a fairly even mix of all three classic Bordeaux grape varieties. This wine sometimes shows a slightly green character when tasted alongside some of the more "blockbuster" style of some of the neighbours but it invariably matures into classic Saint Emilion. In 2012 there have been significant changes at Figeac with a new management team and Michel Rolland brought in as consultant. The tobacco and minty, graphite notes remain but there is definitely more flesh on the Figeac bones this year. To us, this seems to be a wine that respects the Figeac traditions but it has beefed up a little.
A step up over the 2014, the 2012 Château Figeac is a big, opulent, authoritative Figeac loaded with ripe black fruits (blackberries, currants), smoked earth, roasted herbs, and truffle aromas and flavors. Rich, powerful, concentrated, and tannic, it’s a blockbuster that has 2+ decades of prime drinking ahead of it. The 2012s can still be found in the market and are smart buys. 2018 - 2038
A beguiling tobacco leaf note weaves up and away from the core
of steeped plum and mulled currant fruit, while a sleek iron accent
forms the spine. Best from 2018 through 2027.
There are a lot of complex flavours on the nose black fruits then fresher red. The palate is the same with layers of flavour richness and depth yet freshness and towards the back it is quite light with a lovely fragrant elegant charm on the finish. 2017-26
Recently appointed consultant, Michel Rolland, has vowed to help elevate Figeac to the
same level as Saint Emilion's Premiers Grands Crus Classés (A). If so, he has less work to
do than he might imagine, as this is a very impressive Saint Emilion, boasting deep colour,
plush fruit, some Cabernet Sauvignon freshness and backbone, fine tannins and appealing
minerality and palate length.