2009 Clos Fourtet, St-Emilion (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1055064 100 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 After tasting it three times from bottle, I am convinced this prodigious wine is one of the greatest young Bordeaux I have ever tasted. Inky blue/purple with notes of camphor, forest floor, blackberry, cassis, sweet cherries, licorice, the wine has stunning aromatics, unctuous texture and an almost inky concentration, but without any hard edges. With considerable tannin and just enough acidity to provide definition, this wine transcends even its premier grand cru classe terroir. It is certainly the finest Clos Fourtet ever produced. Give it 5-7 years of cellaring to allow some of its baby fat to fall away. There is certainly enough structure underneath to keep for 30-50 years. Bravo! From my barrel score of 95-98, I suppose I should have seen this perfect score coming, particularly considering what proprietor Philippe Cuvelier and estate manager Tony Ballu have accomplished over the last decade. This is one of the great terroirs of St.-Emilion, nearly 50 acres high on the clay beds and deep limestone plateau of the region, just a stone’s throw from the luxury hotel and restaurant Hostellerie de Plaisance. Yields were moderate at 34 hectoliters per hectare, and the final blend is 88% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon (somewhat unusual) and the rest Cabernet Franc, aged 18 months in 80% new oak. (RP)  (4/2010)

95 points Vinous

 The 2009 Clos Fourtet has a generous and opulent bouquet with red cherries, kirsch, fig and light mocha aromas that gently unfold, retaining admirable definition and poise. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, a fine bead of acidity, good structure. A more masculine, serious finish exerts impressive control. This is a classy Saint-Émilion with plenty of ageing potential. Tasted blind at Farr Vintners’ 2009 Bordeaux tasting. (NM)  (3/2019)

95 points Wine Enthusiast

 Elegant as well as rich, this is a beautiful wine. It has great depth of flavor, the sweetest fruit, deliciously ripe. At the same time, the tannins are an underlying sustenance to the impressive ageworthiness. (RV)  (2/2012)

94 points Decanter

 A gorgeous wine, no question, with oak finessing on the nose alongside touches of smoked cloves. But on the palate, it's actually a little less precise than I expected, starting off well on the attack but not quite holding its frame. Power and finesse are evident, unfolding in the glass but not standing out as much as the last time I tried it a few years ago. (JA)  (2/2019)

94 points James Suckling

 Lots of wet earth and minerals on the nose with hints of sliced meat. Dark fruits galore. Full bodied, with a beautiful velvety texture and a juicy and delicious finish. Try after 2017. 94+ points.  (11/2011)

93 points Wine Spectator

 Rather ripe, but nicely framed by singed apple wood, which keeps the core of damson plum, black currant and black cherry flavors at bay for now. Licorice root and black tea notes undercut the finish, which is on the grippy side. This opens steadily in the glass, too. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2014 through 2027. (JM)  (3/2012)

Jancis Robinson

 Tasted blind. Dark, youthful crimson. Sweet, gentle, well-balanced nose. Fairly lightweight but with great charm and balance. For classicists. This still has something to give. Impressive persistence. All in its place. Aromatic and dense. 17.5/20 points. (JR)  (2/2019)

K&L Notes

95 points Lisa Perotti-Brown in Wine Advocate: "The 2009 Clos Fourtet is medium to deep garnet colored and opens on a medicinal/Band-Aid note, giving way to appealing baked red and black fruit notes with touches of dried herbs, tree bark, chargrill and a ferrous waft. The palate is full-bodied with firm, chewy tannins and plenty of muscular fruit, finishing earthy and just a little hard." (3/2019)


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Price: $299.99

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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

Specific Appellation:

Saint Emilion