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Chateau Bellevue Mondotte (Futures Pre-Sale) 2017

  • RP98
  • V97
  • WE95
  • JD95
  • WS94
  • TA94
  • JS93
  • D93
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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RP 98
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
There was no frost in this vineyard in 2017, due to its elevation. Made up of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, the very deep purple-black colored 2017 Bellevue Mondotte has a seriously earthy character—molten rocks—with suggestions of truffles and fertile soil over a core of crème de cassis and plum preserves, plus a hint of camphor. The palate is medium to full-bodied, concentrated, intense and powerful with firm, grainy tannins and wonderful freshness, finishing long.
Barrel Sample: 96-98
V 97
Vinous
Powerful, dark and explosive, the 2017 Bellevue Mondotte bristles with the energy and tension that is such a signature of this tiny 1.5 hectare Saint-Émilion cru. Graphite, smoke, crème de cassis and menthol race out of the glass. As always, Bellevue Mondotte is a tannic, searing Saint-Émilion with bracing acids and tons of structure. It is also one of the most fascinating wines in Gérard Perse's lineup. – Antonio Galloni
Barrel Sample: 95-97
WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
This wine has great fruit, minerality and a dark, dense texture. It is powerful, rich and concentrated, just hinting at its great potential fruitiness. Give it many years, and certainly try to hold until at least 2025.
Barrel Sample: 93-95
JD 95
Jeb Dunnuck
Coming from older vines east of Pavie Decesse (in slightly more clay soils), the 2017 Bellevue Mondotte is a powerful, concentrated 2017 that offers fabulous notes of blueberries, flowers, and violets. One of the more broad, expansive, and sexy wines in the vintage, with terrific purity of fruit, it should round into form with just short-term cellaring and cruise for two decades.
Barrel Sample: 93-95
WS 94
Wine Spectator
An enticing red, with succulent fig and blackberry compote flavors at the core, this has a shot of flashy toast, which is well-integrated. A neat graphite streak shows on the finish.
Barrel Sample: 91-94
TA 94
Tim Atkin
Inky black colour. Super concentrated and juicy sweet black fruit aromas. Almost jammy and concentrated. Makes you wonder how they manage to get this consistency of flavour and approach from year to year, weather irrespective! Lots of coffee oak but drenched in sweet black fruit, kirsch and crème de mûre. Holds balance with fresh acidity, and ripe tannins.
Barrel Sample: 92-94
JS 93
James Suckling
A chewy 2017 with lots of wet-earth and dark-berry character. Some bark, too. Full body, a medium center palate and a flavorful finish. Wait and see how it comes together.
Barrel Sample: 92-93
D 93
Decanter
Up on the plateau, this was spared the ravages of frost but still only yielded 16hl/ha. It has the Perse signature punch of fruit, then the limestone breaks through (there is also a touch more clay here than at Pavie Decesse). The punch almost hides the fruit at first, but it really does finish beautifully and has amazing persistency. The 50-year-old vines have produced a wine that will age extremely well. Tasted several times. 3.58pH.
Barrel Sample
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Chateau Bellevue Mondotte

Chateau Bellevue Mondotte

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Chateau Bellevue Mondotte, France
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Until recently, tiny Chateau Bellevue-Mondotte, nestled on the Pavie plateau, was virtually unknown by wine connoisseurs. The size of the vineyard - just 2.5 hectares - was undoubtedly the main reason for this involuntary anonymity. However, the second part of the chateau's name, reminiscent of its famous neighbors La Mondotte and Chateau Troplant-Mondot, gives us an idea of Chateau Bellevue-Mondotte's exceptional terrior.
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St-Émilion

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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.

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Bordeaux Blends

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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.

In the Glass

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. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

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 Secret

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.

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