CLOS DE L'ORATOIRE
2011 Grand Cru Classé Saint Emilion
|Sub-district||Saint Emilion & Satellites|
|Classification||Grand Cru Classé|
Lovely - silky fruit and a sense of drive and purpose. It is tannic, but this is well-done. Rating: 91-91 L&S (Apr 2012)
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Another up-and-coming, highly respected estate of the Comtes von Neipperg, this 2011 offers copious aromas of spice box, fruitcake, baking spices, sweet cherries and exotic Asian fruits. With an up-front, forward, juicy, medium to full-bodied, fleshy style, it is a treat to drink now, and should continue to age effortlessly for a decade or more. Noticeable tannins in the finish suggest it may age even longer. It is a sleeper of the vintage. Drinking range: 2014 - 2024 Rating: 90+ Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, www.RobertParker.com (Apr 2014)
Picked between 26th and 29th September, a blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, the Clos de l’Oratoire has a very composed nose where the oak is well assimilated. It has decent fruit intensity for the vintage, becoming almost exotic with aeration but not over the top. The palate has a furry entry, good fruit concentration and though there is a fair amount of oak to assimilate there is certainly the fruit to support it. It does not have great length but it is well balanced and pretty. Tasted April 2012. Rating: 89-91 Neal Martin, www.robertparker.com (May 2012)
90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc. 60% new oak. Soils less calcareous than Canon La Gaffelière so ready for drinking earlier. Subtle but pure black plum and cassis fruit. Tighter and a bit leaner than the Ch d'Aiguilhe. Dry tannins but not drying. Less flesh in the middle. 2016-2024 Rating: 16 Julia Harding MW, www.JancisRobinson.com (Apr 2012)
A little less convincing this year. Bright fruit and a leaner weight but tannins are a touch angular on the finish. Drink 2016-2025. Rating: 15.5 www.decanter.com (Apr 2012)
This is plenty ripe, but not at all overextracted, with mouthwatering plum, raspberry and bitter cherry notes coursing along, inlaid with spice, black tea and anise. Nice chalky grip holds sway on the finish. Rating: 91-94 James Molesworth, The Wine Spectator (Apr 2012)
This is savory with a salty and blueberry character. Full and racy with fine tannins and a long finish. Very minerally. Refined and polished. Like the texture. Rating: 90-91 James Suckling, www.jamessuckling.com (Apr 2012)
Clos de l'Oratoire
Located on Saint-Émilion's north-east slope, the Clos de l'Oratoire estate dates back to the mid-19th century to the Beylot family, Libourne based négociants. In the 1969 Saint-Émilion reclassification, Clos de l'Oratoire was ranked Grand Cru Classé. The 10.32 hectares of vines grow on clay-limestone and Fronsac molasse on the upper part of the slope, and clay-sand on the lower part of the slope, a terroir which is enitrely suited to the Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc grape blend. The average age of vines at Clos de l'Oratoire is 35 years, and grapes are all hand harvested into small crates to avoid bruising. Since 1991, the estate has been under the charge of Comte Stephan von Neipperg, who inherited part of the vineyard from his father Joseph-Hubert, Graf von Neipperg.
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