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2018 Ausone, St-Émilion (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1407908 99-100 points James Suckling

Outer quote mark This is really exotic with wild-fruit character that I have seldom encountered in Ausone. Full-bodied yet reserved and very tight. Amazing depth and purity of fruit. Incredible beauty. Sexy. Inner quote mark (4/2019)

98-100 points Decanter

Outer quote mark Pauline Vauthier is the 11th generation of the family to be producing wine here. It's always such an incredible wine, and as ever you can see that they are playing a different game from so many others. The juice, the slate, the minerality, the drip-drip-drip of freshly squeezed berries, spice and barely-there tannins, the sapidity on the finish. Amazing! (JA) Inner quote mark (4/2019)

98-100 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark The 2018 Ausone is composed of 60% Cabernet Franc and 40% Merlot. The Merlot was harvested September 25 and 27, and the Cabernet Franc was harvested October 3, 8 and 9. Deep purple-black in color, it is an impenetrable wall to begin, unrelenting without persistent coaxing, at last uncoiling to offer glimpses at preserved plums, blueberry coulis, molten licorice and underbrush with emerging scents of lavender, iron ore, crushed stones, charcoal and Indian spices plus a waft of red roses. Full-bodied, rich, decadent and tightly knit, it offers layer upon layer of fruit, spice and mineral nuances with a firm frame of exquisitely fine tannins and bold freshness, finishing with epic length and heart-stopping beauty... Château Ausone-one of the most envied vineyards in all of Bordeaux--truly excelled itself in 2018. Perched on Saint-Émilion’s famous limestone plateau and calcareous clay slope, it clearly showed its pedigree under 2018’s challenging conditions. The Vauthiers have produced a wine from this place and time that is at once intense, superbly nuanced and bursting with energy but has a rock-solid structure of perfectly ripe tannins. (LPB) Inner quote mark (4/2019)

97-100 points Vinous

Outer quote mark The 2018 Ausone is off the charts. Deep, sensual and mysterious, the 2018 is going to need many years to show the full breadth of its potential. And yet, there is so much there. Rich and concentrated on the palate, with phenomenal persistence, the 2018 is loaded with energy, tension and precision, offering a compelling interplay of opulence, saline intensity and structure. It is without question one of the wines of the vintage. (AG) Inner quote mark (4/2019)

96-99 points Jeb Dunnuck

Outer quote mark Ratcheting up the intensity, the 2018 Château Ausone has an essence of limestone-like character as well as thrilling notes of blackberries, black raspberries, white flowers, truffle, forest floor, and graphite. Possessing full-bodied richness, a deep, beautifully concentrated mid-palate, ample tannins, and a great finish, this is a powerful, layered Ausone that’s going to need 5-7 years of bottle age but should knock your socks off over the following 25+ years. The 2018 is a blend of 60% Cabernet Franc and 40% Merlot, brought up in a mix of new and used barrels. Inner quote mark (5/2019)

96-98 points Wine Enthusiast

Outer quote mark This blend of 60% Cabernet Franc and 40% Merlot is immensely rich, with a huge structure as well as a sophisticated perfume. It is a wine that is built by bright acidity and structured tannins, with a richness and elegance that demonstrates enormous aging potential. (RV) Inner quote mark (4/2019)

K&L Notes

96-98 points from Neal Martin for Vinous: "The 2018 Ausone was picked on 25 and 27 September with respect to the Merlot and the 3, 8 and 9 October for the Cabernet Franc at 35hL/ha. Aged for 20 months in new French oak barrels. This takes a long time to really open in the glass, eventually revealing intense black cherry and bilberry fruit, shucked oyster shells and touches of pressed violet. There is an exoticism here, yet it is behind several closed doors. The palate is medium-bodied with succulent ripe tannin, fine acidity, the alcohol nicely controlled at around 14.4% with a caressing, multi-layered peacock’s tail finish of truffle, black pepper and a touch of graphite. It is not the very greatest Ausone that I have tasted at this stage - it has stiff competition! But is a very gifted wine that expresses the DNA of Ausone, which is exactly what you want." (11/2019)

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