Chateau Calon-Segur (Futures Pre-Sale) 2012
Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France
James Suckling - "Super fresh and floral with raspberry, currant and berry character. Full body, with fine tannins and a long, long finish. Bright and racy. 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, and 2% Petit Verdot. 92-93"
Wine Spectator - "The 2012 reveals an opaque ruby/purple color along with sweet tannins, low acidity, medium to full body, and abundant cedary, foresty notes intermixed with black cherries, black currants, caramel and spice box. This medium to full-bodied St.-Estephe should drink well in 4-5 years (atypical for a Calon Segur), and last for two decades.
Barrel Sample: 90-92 Points"
The Wine Advocate - "The 2012 reveals an opaque ruby/purple color along with sweet tannins, low acidity, medium to full body, and abundant cedary, foresty notes intermixed with black cherries, black currants, caramel and spice box. This medium to full-bodied St.-Estephe should drink well in 4-5 years (atypical for a Calon Segur), and last for two decades. 90-92 "
International Wine Cellar - "Pretty, medium ruby-red. Aromas of raspberry, cocoa powder and mint are lifted by a penetrating violet note. Intensely flavored, juicy and tight, with brisk acidity extending the red and dark fruit and minerals on the bright, very well-delineated finish. A note of sweet blackcurrant lingers impressively. This has excellent energy without coming across as green, but seems less strict to me than the 2011. Interestingly, technical director Vincent Millet told me that the petit verdot was planted partly in 1939 and that these old vines love water stress (they were harvested on October 15, yielding just 15 h/h). In contrast, some of the young cabernet sauvignon vines didn't make it, which explains the lowest proportion of cabernet sauvignon (along with 2011) in the Calon-Segur blend in some years (2008 had 75%). Millet thinks that the 2012 Calon is livelier than the 2011 (which had a similar pH but lower total acidity); he believes the '11 will be ready to drink sooner than 2012. I'm not so sure, as I find this 2012's sweetly fruity personality hard to resist already.
Barrel Sample: 89-92 Points"
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Chateau Calon-Segur Winery
The community of Saint-Estèphe has it roots in the Gallo-Roman origins of this château. Château Calon-Ségur was the first wine estate in the commune and is classified as a Troisième Cru Classé. The wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. It is matured in wood for 18 months, with 50 percent new oak. View all Chateau Calon-Segur Wines
About St. EstepheView a map of St. Estephe wineries (saint ess-TEFF)
St.-Estèphe is the northernmost of the 4 communes hugging the Dordogne river in the Northern Haut-Médoc area of Bordeaux. While the appellation has no premier crus (first growths) of its own, it's southernmost chateau, Cos d'Estournel, is a highly acclaimed second growth, geographically separated from the famed Lafite-Rothschild in Pauillac by only a stream. Many believe Cos d'Estournel consistently produces wine of a first growth level.
Notable FactsWine from St-Estèphe typically matures more slowly than its southern counterparts. The soil is heavy and rich with clay, leading to wines with firm, muscular tannins and high acidity. Dark and opaque in color, the wines can be a bit austere in their youth, though most get softer as they age. Cabernet Sauvignon is the primary grape in most of the region's blends, although Merlot is important in helping to soften the wines. In volume, St-Estèphe creates the most wines of the top four Haut-Médoc communes. There are quite a few Cru Bourgeois properties, which are more approachable when young and, even better, lower in price. To get a feel for St-Estèphe, look for Cru Bourgeois like Chateau Haut-Beauséjour.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.