|Subregion||France > Bordeaux > Right Bank > St Emilion|
Château Belair Monange is now owned by the Moueix family, and has had a new name since the 2008 vintage. This is one of the best vineyards in Saint Emilion, perched at the top of the slope right next to Ausone, near Canon and above Angélus. Despite the brilliant terroir, the wine-making was mediocre for many years until the Moueix purchase. It is clear that Edouard Moueix is transforming this château into one of the stars of Saint Emilion. The vineyard is planted with 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc. Work is ongoing to improve the yield of vines up to 100 years old, in tandem with filling in gaps in the vineyard. Of the 23.5 hectares only 16 are currently in production. A second wine "Annonce" is now produced from the younger vines.
It’s full-bodied, showing loads of violets, blackberries and blueberries with salt and white-pepper character. Minerally. It’s very fine-grained with a fascinating finish. Intense and long. 98% merlot and 2% cabernet franc.
The 2020 Belair Monange displays an opaque purple-black color, unfurling slowly to reveal a nose of blueberry preserves, stewed plums and Morello cherries, giving way to a fragrant undercurrent of Chinese five spice, incense and dried rose petals, plus hints of fallen leaves, Sichuan pepper and oolong tea. The medium to full-bodied palate delivers a fantastically plush texture with mouth-coating black and blue fruits and loads of exotic spice sparks, gently lifted by soft acidity, finishing long and fragrant. 2027 - 2052
The gunsmoke character is immediately evident on the nose, as is richly expressed damson and raspberry fruit. This is pared back and held back right now, elegant, showing a seductive edge without trying too hard. The texture is softly-brushed velvet, these tannins are front and centre but so fine and so precise that they don't get in the way of the fruit. Salinity from the limestone is evident on the finish, bringing a moreish juiciness and you can scrape your tongue against the pumice stone texture. Austere in all the right ways, with just the most incredible depth and layers. I love it. Harvest September 15 to 23. 98-100.
Drinking Window 2027 - 2050
The 2020 is a blend of 98% Merlot with just a touch of Cabernet Franc, harvested from 15th to 23rd September. The wine will be aged for 16-18 months in 50% new French oak. Sweet and caramelised red fruits on the nose here, with a hint of milk chocolate and cherry blossom. The palate follows with the same rounded, sweet fruit bolstered by succulent, ripe tannins. There is a herbal, fresh note that complements this fruit and gives a bright edge to the finish.
98% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample.
Wisp of fruit and soil on the nose with a red-berry and chalky nuance. Beautifully textured, the plentiful tannins smooth and filigree fine. Poised, fresh and juicy as well, the finish long and palate-cleansing. Precisely executed, the terroir showing through. (JL)
Drink 2028 – 2045
(98% M, 2% CF)
Dense and minerally to smell; concentrated, fairly full, very fresh in acidity, very fine in its firm tannin; deep, sweet, fresh; transparent, complex, and aromatic, a beautiful, complete limestone plateau GCC St-Emilion; pure, transparent, racy, and refined, with great, sweet, scented length. So fresh, pure, and transparent, without a trace of “thickness,” the concentration notwithstanding. Top-notch St-Emilion. Will need, ideally, a couple of decades. 2038–60+.