James Suckling 97-98
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.
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.
Anticipated maturity: 2027-2050