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2027 - 2052
Reviewed by - Lisa Perrotti-Brown
The 2020 Belair Monange displays an opaque purple-black color, unfurling slowly to reveal a nose of blueberry preserves, stewed plums and Morello cherries, giving way to a fragrant undercurrent of Chinese five spice, incense and dried rose petals, plus hints of fallen leaves, Sichuan pepper and oolong tea. The medium to full-bodied palate delivers a fantastically plush texture with mouth-coating black and blue fruits and loads of exotic spice sparks, gently lifted by soft acidity, finishing long and fragrant.
The 2020 Bélair-Monange continues its impressive run of form under the JP Moueix family, having rapidly ascended to the highest rank within the Saint-Émilion appellation. This latest release is another stunning articulation of its propitious terroir, which lies adjacent to Ausone. You could lose yourself in the kaleidoscope of aromas: black cherries, Dorset plum, crushed stone, violet and background pencil box, beautifully defined and growing in intensity. The palate is medium-bodied with ripe tannins and quite firm (maybe a tad more than I anticipated), displaying fine grip. This is a strict yet utterly compelling Bélair-Monange with wonderful salinity coming through toward the finish. There is a lot of substance to this wine and it is perhaps less immediate than other recent vintages, indicating that it may require long-term cellaring. Outstanding.
(98% M, 2% CF)
Dense and minerally to smell; concentrated, fairly full, very fresh in acidity, very fine in its firm tannin; deep, sweet, fresh; transparent, complex, and aromatic, a beautiful, complete limestone plateau GCC St-Emilion; pure, transparent, racy, and refined, with great, sweet, scented length. So fresh, pure, and transparent, without a trace of “thickness,” the concentration notwithstanding. Top-notch St-Emilion. Will need, ideally, a couple of decades. 2038–60+.
It’s full-bodied, showing loads of violets, blackberries and blueberries with salt and white-pepper character. Minerally. It’s very fine-grained with a fascinating finish. Intense and long. 98% merlot and 2% cabernet franc.
98% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample.
Wisp of fruit and soil on the nose with a red-berry and chalky nuance. Beautifully textured, the plentiful tannins smooth and filigree fine. Poised, fresh and juicy as well, the finish long and palate-cleansing. Precisely executed, the terroir showing through. (JL)
The 2020 Bélair-Monange is exceptional. A bold, dramatic wine, the 2020 hits all the senses with layers of intense dark fruit, chocolate, cake, spice, leather and espresso. In some vintages, I have felt Bélair-Monange to be perhaps just a bit pushed in terms of ripeness. The 2020 has plenty of richness, but also more than enough energy to provide balance. Clean, mineral underpinnings extend the persistent finish beautifully. I expect the 2020 will reward readers with several decades of thrilling drinking.
Full-bodied, concentrated, rich and velvety, the wine promptly provides layer after layer of flawlessly ripe, black and dark red pit fruits, crushed rocks, licorice, espresso, smoke and flowers. Long, deep, rich, concentrated and focused, the wine finishes with a majestic combination of minerals, black plums, black cherries, dark cocoa, velvet-laced tannins and spice. The stony finish sticks with you for close to 60 seconds. Give this at least a decade before pulling a cork and enjoy it over the next 3 decades with little effort. 98-100
A quintessential Saint-Emilion, the 2020 Château Belair-Monange reveals a dense purple/plum color as well as classic Saint-Emilion minerality that covers lots of ripe black fruits, graphite, tobacco, and violet aromas and flavors. Rich, medium to full-bodied, and concentrated, you could almost eat it with a fork and yet it still stays light on its feet, has building, polished tannins, and a great finish. It's a brilliant wine in the making.
Tasted by Jane Anson (at Primeur week tastings in Bordeaux, 01 May 2021)
The gunsmoke character is immediately evident on the nose, as is richly expressed damson and raspberry fruit. This is pared back and held back right now, elegant, showing a seductive edge without trying too hard. The texture is softly-brushed velvet, these tannins are front and centre but so fine and so precise that they don't get in the way of the fruit. Salinity from the limestone is evident on the finish, bringing a moreish juiciness and you can scrape your tongue against the pumice stone texture. Austere in all the right ways, with just the most incredible depth and layers. I love it. Harvest September 15 to 23. 98-100.
Drinking Window 2027 - 2050