2014 Fonplégade, St-Émilion (Pre-Arrival)
The 2014 Fonplégade is round, succulent and impeccably balanced. Dark red cherry, plum, smoke, licorice and new oak meld together in a deeply expressive, layered wine endowed with superb purity and nuance. Silky, polished tannins add to an overall impression of creaminess and resonance as mocha, plums, black cherries, licorice and smoke build to the huge, extroverted finish. The style is opulent and overt, but all the elements are in the right place. Sweet floral notes add an attractive flourish of brightness on the close. (AG)
*Barrel Tasting* A touch amped-up in style, with dark plum and boysenberry paste flavors forming the core, backed by ample licorice and sweet spice details on the finish. The acidity keeps this honest. For the hedonist crowd. (Web Only—2015)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The Château Fonplegade 2014 has a surprisingly light and reserved bouquet: pretty and floral but requiring a couple of minutes to get into its stride. The palate is medium-bodied with good backbone, a little edginess coming through with aeration, although it remains stubborn and linear on the finish. It just needs barrel aging to knit the component parts together. Presuming that it does, then it will be a fine Saint Emilion. (NM)
*Barrel Sample* This is a juicy wine that has attractive fruitiness as well as a dry structure. The palate oscillates between fruit and tannin without one dominating the other.