2010 Ausone, St-Emilion (Pre-Arrival)
*Cellar Selection* A big, bold wine with unbelievable power and concentration. Low yields and a dominance of Cabernet Franc have produced an immensely concentrated wine. Still very young, this magnificent wine holds the promise of great aging.
The nose is so deep and almost endless with dried strawberries, blueberries, and incense. Citrus too. Some prunes. Full body, with chewy yet polished tannin quality and tension. Beautiful focus and balance with a richness and delicacy at the same time. Something almost Burgundian. It's the purity of fruit. 55% Cabernet Franc and 45% Merlot. Try in 2020.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2010 Ausone struck me as another brilliant, potentially perfect wine, which should come as no shock to people who have been following Vauthierís work over the last decade or more. Backward and intense, this wine offers up notes of crushed chalk/rock mineralilty interwoven with blueberry, black raspberry and cassis as well as some graphite and vanillin. It is incredibly rich but at the same time precise, fresh and vivacious. This is a super wine, but it will require enormous patience from its potential suitors. Forget it for a decade and drink it over the following 50+ years. (98+)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(a 55/45 blend of cabernet franc and merlot; 3.53 pH; 14.5% alcohol; reportedly from a crop level of just 26 hectoliters per hectare; a 67% selection for the grand vin Inky, glass-staining purple. The captivating nose offers very intense, pure aromas of dark plum, blackcurrant, balsamic coffee, bay leaf and violet. Supple and soft on entry, but boasts a huge structure underlying the ripe, glossy black fruit, graphite and ink flavors. Finishes smooth, creamy and very long. Destined to be a very long-lived Ausone, this is one of the top wines of the vintage and probably even better than the blockbuster 2009 made here. Ausone is one of the few properties that seems to have had great success harvesting its merlot late (October 9 through 15), more or less at the same time as its cabernet franc (October 13-16). But as Pauline Vauthier pointed out, they were the first to harvest in their immediate neighborhood.
Very sappy and intense, offering racy red licorice, red currant and violet notes, with nice taut acidity and a long, minerally finish. Combines power and austerity, with excellent drive. For those who like backbone in their wines.
55% Cabernet Franc, 45% Merlot.