Chateau Beau-Sejour Becot (Futures Pre-Sale) 2017
Blend: 80% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2017 Beau-Sejour Becot sails out of the glass with pronounced black cherries, kirsch, baked plums and boysenberries scents plus nuances of bay leaves, star anise and pencil shavings with a waft of roses. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers bags of juicy black fruits with a firm backbone of rounded tannins and bold freshness, finishing with great length and purity. Rating: 90+
Freshness blends with a solid tannic structure in this ripe wine. It gives the wine a lift and succulent berry flavors and acidity. That combines with the dry core to promise great aging for a wine that should be ready to drink from 2024.
Plush and warm in feel, with velvety plum sauce, raspberry reduction and cherry preserve flavors cruising along, lined with graphite and anise details. A racy edge is buried on the finish, showing a touch of floral lift. Very suave. Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Best from 2022 through 2037.
Some handy depth to the nose here with quality fruit that’s evenly ripened. Rich aromas of mulberries lead to similar flavors on the very smooth, juicy and supple palate with plenty of fine tannins. Drink or hold.
Deeply colored, the 2017 Chateau Beau-Sejour Becot checks in as 80% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon that was 50% destemmed and aged in 65% French oak. This classic, elegant 2017 reveals a deep ruby/purple hue as well as plenty of black cherry and mulberry fruits, solid complexity in its salty minerality, dried flowers, iron, and spice aromatics, medium to full body, a bright spine of acidity, and outstanding length. It doesn't have the flesh or richness of the 2016 (or 2018) yet is classic, pure, incredibly precise, and long. This beautiful wine will benefit from 4-5 years of bottle age and keep for 15-20 years. Rating: 93+
This has sweet brambly fruit, tight dark chocolate and liquorice through the body of the wine, giving way to uplift on the finish from a mouthwatering juicy slate texture that speaks of the limestone. The oak is evident but smoky and enjoyable, and this is a good quality wine, easily living up to its En Primeur promise and reflecting the work done at this property over the last few years. Drinking Window 2024 - 2040
Barrel Sample: 90-92
The estate was named Beau-Séjour in 1787 by General Jacques de Carle, the proprietor at the time. Michel Bécot bought the estate from Doctor Jean Fagouet in 1969 and further increased the area under vine from 10.5 hectares to 15 by acquiring 4.5 hectares on the Trois Moulins plateau in 1979. The chateau then took on the name of Beau-Séjour Bécot. The vines are planted on perfectly homogenous soil ideal for producing fine wine. Michel Bécot retired in 1985. His two sons, Gérard and Dominique, now manage the estate.
Marked by its historic fortified village—perhaps the prettiest in all of Bordeaux, the St-Émilion appellation, along with its neighboring village of Pomerol, are leaders in quality on the Right Bank of Bordeaux. These Merlot-dominant red wines (complemented by various amounts of Cabernet Franc and/or Cabernet Sauvignon) remain some of the most admired and collected wines of the world.
St-Émilion has the longest history in wine production in Bordeaux—longer than the Left Bank—dating back to an 8th century monk named Saint Émilion who became a hermit in one of the many limestone caves scattered throughout the area.
Today St-Émilion is made up of hundreds of independent farmers dedicated to the same thing: growing Merlot and Cabernet Franc (and tiny amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon). While always roughly the same blend, the wines of St-Émilion vary considerably depending on the soil upon which they are grown—and the soils do vary considerably throughout the region.
The chateaux with the highest classification (Premier Grand Cru Classés) are on gravel-rich soils or steep, clay-limestone hillsides. There are only four given the highest rank, called Premier Grand Cru Classés A (Chateau Cheval Blanc, Ausone, Angélus, Pavie) and 14 are Premier Grand Cru Classés B. Much of the rest of the vineyards in the appellation are on flatter land where the soils are a mix of gravel, sand and alluvial matter.
Great wines from St-Émilion will be deep in color, and might have characteristics of blackberry liqueur, black raspberry, licorice, chocolate, grilled meat, earth or truffles. They will be bold, layered and lush.
One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.
Tasting Notes for Bordeaux Blends
Bordeaux Blends are dry, red wines and generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, black cherry plum, graphite, cedar and violet. Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines, modeled after the Right Bank, are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure.
Perfect Food Pairings for Bordeaux Blends
Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.
Sommelier Secrets for Bordeaux Blends
While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.