|Subregion||France > Bordeaux > Right Bank > St Emilion|
Alain Vauthier has made massive improvements at Ausone since taking full control of the winemaking and management of his family property in 1997. The wines made here are now in a totally different league from those produced in the 1970's and 1980's. Ausone vies with Petrus and Cheval Blanc as the right bank's top Chateau. With production levels even less than those of Petrus, Ausone has become one of the most in demand and hard-to-find wines of Bordeaux. The 7 hectare vineyard has an average age of 53 years but some vines are over 100 years old. It is planted with 55% Cabernet Franc, 45% Merlot and production rarely exceeds 2000 cases.
The 2019 Ausone was picked September 20-27 for the Merlot and October 3, 5 and 7 for the Cabernet Franc, then matured for 20 months in new French oak with light toasting. This is very refined and focused on the nose, less opulent compared to recent vintages, and very sophisticated, with hints of Montecristo cigar interwoven through the red fruit. The palate is medium-bodied with very fine but quite firm tannins that frame the lightly spiced black fruit. Touches of pencil lead and white pepper appear toward the prolonged finish. This very composed Ausone might actually drink earlier than other vintages but unequivocally has the substance to age with grace in bottle. There is an abiding sense of completeness here. Drink 2026-2066.
Unwinding in the glass with deep aromas of wild berries, vine smoke, orange rind, exotic spices and violets, framed by a deft application of classy new oak, the 2019 Ausone is full-bodied, rich and concentrated, with beautiful purity of fruit, lively acids and ripe but abundant structuring tannins. Deep, layered and vibrant, it's full of potential and will likely emerge as one of the most long-lived 2019s. This is another magical wine from what many consider to be Saint-Émilion's greatest terroir, and it will demand and richly reward patience. Drink Date 2029 - 2065
Like a bouquet of fresh flowers on the nose, as well as blackberries, raspberries and blackcurrants. Sandalwood as well. Full-bodied with incredibly polished tannins that have the texture of the finest velvet. The palate is very fine, oriented with fabulously pure fruit and minerally and stone undertones at the finish. It’s so classical in nature. Essence of Ausone. 60% cabernet franc and 40% merlot. From organically grown grapes. Best after 2027.
The 2019 Ausone is a blend of 65% Cabernet Franc and 35% Merlot. Deep garnet-purple colored, it bursts with uber-fragrant notes of liquid violets, licorice, exotic spices, and roses with a core of black cherries, plum preserves, black soil, and sassafras. Full-bodied, it is super concentrated with a razor backbone of refreshing acidity and very pixilated tannins, finishing with incredible depth and minerality. This wine dances!
In 2019 the Merlots were harvested between the 20th and 27th September, with the Cabernet Franc picked on the 3rd, 5th and 7th of Octobre. The blend is 65% Cabernet Franc and 35% Merlot, and the wine will be aged for 20 months in oak. In recent vintages Ausone has continued its impressive form - the 2018 received a potential 100 point score from James Suckling, Lisa Perotti-Brown and Antonio Galloni. Deep purple in colour, with a complex, truffley nose of forest fruits, incense and vanilla. The palate is seductively ripe and fleshy in fruit, but tightened by mouthcoating, grippy and ripe tannings. There is a velveteen mouthfeel that complements waves of dark cassis and brighter violet and cherry blossom. Multi-dimensional and hedonistic, the sweet spices and ripe fruits are perfectly in balance with bright acidity. The finish is minutes long, with a cool, mineral edge that adds to the precision and moreishness of this exemplary St Emilion. Tasted in Bordeaux.
65% Cabernet Franc, 35% Merlot. Barrel sample.
Compact, dense and structured but just a little austere at present. Fresh and lifted with a hint of tea and floral notes, depth of fruit and finely matted texture but everything reined in, the plentiful tannins subdued behind. But nothing in excess. Just a slow burner. Undoubted ageing potential. (JL)
Drink 2030 – 2050