Ch Clos Saint Julien 2018
Saint-Emilion€ 47.67/ Per fles min. 12 flessen
This is Catherine Papon-Nouvel’s rarest wine. She is also the owner-winemaker at Petit Gravet Aîné. This 1.2-hectare vineyard is situated just west of Château Soutard atop the limestone plateau of Saint-Emilion. Those who know the village of Saint-Emilion and the little roundabout at the top of the town, have driven by this walled vineyard: it is immediately to the left of the roundabout where one might normally turn right to go into town. Planted at 6,000 vines/ha, there is precious little topsoil atop the limestone motherlode, which gives this wine its distinctive minerality. The 40-year old vineyard is planted with 50% Cabernet Franc and 50% Merlot. Catherine farms her Lilliputian vineyard meticulously as though it were an English garden! The vineyard is certified organic by the French organization, Agriculture Biologique. All the fruit was hand-harvested. The Merlot was harvested on 24th September for Merlot and on October 6th for Cabernet Franc. Yields in 2018 were 37 hls/ha. After a cold soak, the juice was fermented in truncated oak tanks with a 20-day cuvaison. Malo and sur lies (for five months) aging were conducted in 100% new barrels from top coopers Taransaud and Ana Sélection and should run 18 months. Potentially 5,000 bottles. The tentative blend reflects the planted acreage: 50% Cabernet Franc and 50% Merlot.14.5%.
Vinous – Antonio Galloni – 91-94/100
Proprietor Catherine Papon-Nouvel turned out a gorgeous Clos Saint Julien in 2018. Black cherry, plum, espresso, menthol, licorice and smoke build as this sumptuous, full-bodied Saint-Émilion shows off its curvy, racy personality. A wine of real character, Clos Saint Julien is a winner. The tiny 1.2 hectare vineyard sits on Saint-Émilion’s vaunted limestone plateau and is planted with 50% Merlot and 50% Cabernet Franc, the same blend as the wine itself.
Robert parker – The Wine Advocate – 92-94/100
Catherine Papon-Nouvel, the owner/winemaker at Petit Gravet Aîné, owns this 1.2-hectare vineyard situated just west of Château Soutard atop the limestone plateau of Saint-Émilion. The 40-year-old vineyard is certified organic, and yields in 2018 were 37 hectoliters per hectare. Aging is in 100% new barrels for an estimated 18 months. From the Gaudet and Le Jardin lieux-dits and blended of 50% Cabernet Franc and 50% Merlot, the deep garnet-purple colored 2018 Clos St Julien saunters languorously out of the glass with notions of baked blueberries, spice cake and plum preserves plus hints of mocha, Christmas cake and sautéed herbs. Full, rich and decadent, it has tons of spicy sparks and a plush texture, finishing with a refreshing lift.
J.M. Quarin – 90/100
J. Suckling – 93-94/100
Betanne & Desseauve – 95/100