|France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > Margaux
Now comfortably established in the super-second league. Huge efforts have been made by owners Chanel to make great wine at Rauzan, with production of the first wine only around half of the total harvest. The rest is used for their excellent second wine - Ségla. The 70 hectare vineyard is planted with 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot with a touch of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. In our view this 2nd growth is consistently the top wine of the appellation after Palmer and Chateau Margaux itself - and it is frequently the winner of the Margaux appellation in our blind tastings. This is the second vintage for new winemaker Nicolas Audebert who comes to Bordeaux following stints at Krug and making Cheval des Andes for LVMH in South America. He certainly had a terrific debut here with an outstanding 2015.
The aromas of blackcurrants, sweet tobacco and sandalwood are tantalizing. Then it turns to subtle, dried fruit. Full-bodied with dense and powerful tannins, yet ending with finesse and vertical nature. Very deep. Power with finesse. Try after 2025.
The 2016 Rauzan-Segla has a deep garnet color. Black cherry compote, baked blackberries, and freshly crushed blackcurrants all jump from the glass, followed by hints of rose oil, cardamom, and cedar chest, plus a waft of spice box. Medium-bodied, the palate is super-intense, featuring tight-knit black fruits and floral layers, framed by fine-grained tannins and bold freshness, finishing with impressive length.
Structured and elegant, this starts slowly, and is clearly still young at this point, with firm tannins giving a slow-release to the blackberry and cassis fruits, laced with mint, black tea, cumin and liqourice. Getting even better as it ages, this has decades ahead of it. This first wine comes almost entirely from plots on Terrace 4, a wide, clay-rich strip of gravel. 3/6ph, 45hl/h yield, 60% new oak, harvest September 20 to October 15. Nicolas Audbert director.
Tasted blind. Muddy crimson. Muddy nose. But some interesting fruit flavour here. And the tannins are not too tough. Though the finish is a bit green. I preferred the Ségla at this stage!
Drink 2025 – 2038
The monumental 2016 Château Rauzan-Ségla is up with the crème de la creme in the vintage and is a brilliant, brilliant wine that readers should snatch up. Based on 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, and the rest Petit Verdot, all raised in 60% new French oak, it’s a powerful, full-bodied Margaux that has thrilling notes of crème de cassis, blueberries, spring flowers, new leather, and obvious minerality as well as a Château Margaux-like sandalwood and exotic floral quality. Deep, beautifully concentrated, and as seamless and elegant as it gets, it needs 4-5 years of bottle age (it’s brilliant even today) and will keep for 30+ years. Bravo! Drink 2023-2053.
Lush the nose has rich fruit the palate depth of flavour velvet smooth supple in the middle. The richness is underpinned by freshness layers of flavour lots of complexity the tannins fine and discreet. There are sweet black fruits at the back yet the finish is precise with great length. 2026-40
A wonderfully assured wine in 2016, this delivers the balance and complexity that we’ve grown to expect from Rauzan-Ségla. Grassy, elegant and hauntingly perfumed, with stylishly integrated oak, caressing tannins and scented red berry fruit. 2024-32
The 2016 Rauzan-Segla (Rausan-Segla) is a blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot picked between 20 September and 15 October at 45 hectoliters per hectare. The wine is being aged in 60% new oak for 18 months. It has 13.2% alcohol. It has a very powerful and intense bouquet with layers of blackberry, kirsch, cedar and a touch of mint. The palate is medium-bodied with plenty of fruit concentration: layers of ripe blackberry and boysenberry, segueing into what feels like a very spicy and peppery second half that seems to calm down and attain more nuance with aeration in the glass. It is a wonderful follow-up to the 2015 last year, although not quite with the same audacity and bravado. Tasted twice with consistent notes. Drink 2022-2050.
A solid red with currant and blackberry character. Full body, soft tannins and a flavorful finish. Shows richness and excitement. Juicy and sexy undertone to this.
The 2016 Rauzan-Ségla is blended of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot aged in 60% new and 40% one-year-old barrels for 18 months. Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, it sings of lifted red and black cherries, black raspberries and cassis with a rose hip tea and lilacs undercurrent plus sparks of tobacco, pencil shavings and tilled earth. The palate is medium-bodied, elegant and mineral laced with firm, fine-grained tannins and beautiful freshness, finishing with great length and depth. 2021 - 2046
A beautiful wine, juicy yet controlled, muscular tannic frame with a pillow of freshness underneath, crushed mint leaf, liqourice, black tea, dark chocolate, damson, cassis, spiced plum, full of pleasure with plenty to sink into. The 2016 vintage is one that you can confidently cellar for decades, but is already giving clear signals of its brilliance. 3/6ph, 45hl/h yield, 60% new oak, harvest September 20 to October 15. Nicolas Audbert director.
This is a Rauzan-Ségla with a powerful, streamlined throb. The two Rauzan neighbours (Ségla and Gassies) give very different takes on the vintage and each has its own charm. This is sleek, poised and well controlled, demonstrating deep extraction with clear cassis notes. Nicolas Audbert takes more risks with the wine than his predecessor John Kolasa did, and the opulence, finesse and forward motion is clear. Big-framed for the vintage, this resembles the 2015, even the 2010, and is a wine for long ageing.
Drinking Window 2027 - 2050
Luminous crimson. Nicely integrated nose. Very juicy and sappy. You really want to drink this even though it is clearly not pushed to any limit. Nicely judged. Proper satiny Margaux. Bravo.
Really lifted, savoury nose. Well mannered. Nothing out of step. Could do with a bit more acidity and drive? A bit too diplomatic on the palate?