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Chateau Angelus 2005

Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
  • RP98
  • WS96
  • ST96
  • W&S96
  • CG95
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Winemaker Notes

This vintage also belongs on the list of great, legendary Bordeaux vintages. At Chateau Angelus, the vintage was crowned with outstanding scores by the great wine critics and acclaimed by all the professionals. Harmony, balance between power and freshness, and aromatic precision are the features of this unique vintage.

Critical Acclaim

RP 98
The Wine Advocate

This 7,000 case blend of 60% Merlot and 40% Cabernet Franc will rival or perhaps eclipse vintages such as 2000, 1998, 1990, and 1989. Its dense purple color is followed by an extraordinary perfume of charcoal, espresso roast, blackberries, blueberries, and a hint of wood. In spite of its thick texture, terrific acidity, high tannins, and enormous intensity as well as richness, it is surprisingly approachable, but given how slowly the 1989 and 1990 have aged, I would recommend cellaring it for 8-10 years. It should keep for three decades. A brilliant wine!

WS 96
Wine Spectator

Black purple in color, with coffee, blackberry and currant on the nose. Full-bodied, with supervelvety tannins and a long aftertaste of toasty oak and ripe fruit. Very close to the 2000. Superb. Best after 2018. 7,000 cases made.

ST 96
International Wine Cellar

Good red-ruby. Deep, sweet aromas and flavors of black raspberry, cassis, graphite and licorice. Wonderfully lush, silky and seamless, with a near-perfect balance of fruit and acidity. Very full in the middle palate but with terrific verve leavening the wine's total ripeness. This really coats the palate with flavor and the very long, slow-building finish features utterly sensual tannins. A great performance for this property.

W&S 96
Wine & Spirits

Angélus has both beautiful richness and shape in 2005, the sensual touch people hope to find in merlot that it so rarely and exquisitely delivers. The spice, the beeswax, the chocolate and black fruit are all there, but the focus is on the wine's subtle power, not any particular flavor. This had appeared black and superripe en primeur. Now there's a dark, earthy vibration in the tannin, a reverberation in the middle that touches senses beyond taste. This should live for decades.

CG 95
Connoisseurs' Guide

Among the top St. Emilion bottlings in recent years, Angelus rings the bell once again with its rich and opulent style. Full, ripe and plush with more than a slight resemblance to Napa's best, it is a deeply fruited and unabashed proponent of the new "international" model. Its juicy intensity moves it to the head of the class now, but it has the tannic substructure to grow for a good many years.

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Chateau Angelus

Chateau Angelus

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Chateau Angelus, , France - Bordeaux
Chateau Angelus
Saint Emilion Premier Cru Classe. 60% Cabernet Franc, 40% Merlot. Average age of vines is 25 years. 150 acres producing 12,000 cases. Among the largest of the Grand Crus of Saint Emilion, Angelus was for many years rather underrated. However, since Hubert de Bouard took control in the early 1980s, everything about the estate has improved - most importantly, the wine. Today Angelus has a justifiably fine reputation.

A long and narrow valley producing flavorful red, white, and pink wines...

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A long and narrow valley producing flavorful red, white, and pink wines, the Rhône is bisected by the river of the same name and split into two distinct sub-regions—north and south. While a handful of grape varieties span the entire length of the valley, there are significant differences between the two zones in climate and geography as well as the style and quantity of wines produced. The Northern Rhône, with its continental climate and steep hillside vineyards, is responsible for a mere 5% or less of the greater region’s total output. The Southern Rhône has a much more Mediterranean climate, the aggressive, chilly Mistral wind, and plentiful fragrant wild herbs known collectively as ‘garrigue.’

In the Northern Rhône, the only permitted red variety is Syrah. In the appellations of St.-Joseph, Hermitage, Cornas, and Côte-Rôtie (where up to 20% Viognier may be co-fermented), it produces savory, peppery wines with telltale notes of olive, bacon fat, and smoke. Oily, perfumed whites are made from Viognier in Condrieu and Château-Grillet, while elsewhere only Marsanne and Roussanne are used, with the former providing body and texture and the latter lending nervy acidity. The wines of the Southern Rhône are typically blends, with the reds often based on Grenache and balanced by Syrah, Mourvèdre, and an assortment of other varieties. All three northern white varieties are used here, as well as Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Bourbelenc, and more. The best known sub-regions of the Southern Rhône are the reliable, wallet-friendly Côtes du Rhône and the esteemed Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Others include Gigondas, Vacqueyras, and rosé-only appellation Tavel.

Rhône Blends

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of spice...

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of spice, Rhône red blends originated in France’s Southern Rhône valley and have become popular in Priorat, Washington, South Australia, and California’s Central Coast. In the Rhône itself, 19 grape varieties are permitted for use, but many of these blends, are based on Grenache and supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre, earning the nickname “GSM blends.” Côtes du Rhône and Châteauneuf-du-Pape are perhaps the best-known outposts for these wines. Other varieties that may be found in Rhône blends include Carignan, Cinsault, and Counoise.

In the Glass

The taste profile of a Rhône blend will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache, which often forms the base of these blends, is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit, a plush texture, and often high levels of alcohol. Syrah supplies darker fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy, and meaty notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume as well as body, tannin, and a healthy dose of color. New World examples will lie further along the fruit-forward end of the spectrum, while those from the Old World taste and smell much earthier, often with a “barnyard” character that is attractive to many fans of these wines.

Perfect Pairings

Rhône red blends typically make for very food-friendly wines. Depending on the weight and alcohol level, these can work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes—they play equally well with beef, pork, duck, lamb, or game. With their high acidity, these wines are best-matched with salty or fatty foods, and can handle the acidity of tomato sauce in pizza or pasta. Braised beef cheeks, grilled lamb sausages, or roasted squab are all fine pairings.

Sommelier Secret

Some regions like to put their own local spin on the Rhône red blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin, and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or even Tempranillo make an appearance.

DOB96144_2005 Item# 96144

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