Biodynamically farmed since 1998, this estate has made an effortlessly balanced and aromatic wine this year, with excellent tension between well-worked tannins and fruit purity.
The 2015 La Tour Figeac was very backward and unresponsive in the glass, despite vigorous coaxing. The palate is better with quite rigid tannin, plenty of freshness, a little sultry compared to its peers, but with good density on the finish. I suspect this may merit a higher evaluation after bottling - broody now, but sure to mellow by the time of bottling.
A Stéphane Derenoncourt wine. Polished and lively with real excitement and meatiness. Waltzes! Good stuff. Drink 2024-2034
A full body, chewy wine with lots of blackberry and dark chocolate character. Straight in.
The 2015 La Tour Figeac presents a distinctly savory profile. Iron, smoke, tobacco and earthy notes dominate, while the fruit is pushed into the background. I very much like the energy here, but would like to see a bit more depth and sweetness through the middle. The blend is 75% Merlot and 25% Cabernet Franc. Christine Derenoncourt and Julien Lavenu are the consulting winemakers.
Well known to lovers of under-valued St Emilion, this property close to the border with Pomerol has made an ambitious, age worthy wine in 2015. Structured tannins, toasty oak and plenty of dark berry fruit are underpinned by acidity. Drink: 2022-30
Due south of St Estèphe lies the appellation of Pauillac, the king of Left Bank communes. It is home to three first growths as well as a plethora of other classified growths. Pauillac's renowned well-draining, gravelly soils enable its dominant grape Cabernet Sauvignon to reach fantastic heights of complexity and concentration. As a result, Pauilac's wines tend to be full-bodied with compact tannins and good freshness. Its aromatics are often what one associates with classic Bordeaux: pencil shavings, black currant and occasional mint. Some of the most famous châteaux of the commune are Latour, Mouton Rothschild, Lafite Rothschild, Pichon Baron, Pichon Lalande and Lynch Bages.