Conseillante 2016

Pomerol

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Tasting Notes

The 2016 La Conseillante is a brilliant wine from the team led by Technical Director Marielle Cazaux. Polished and sophisticated, the 2016 possesses stunning vertical lift, with soaring aromatics that make a strong first impression. Silky and seductive on the palate, the 2016 is all about precision and energy in the early going. It is also one of the most quite, soft-spoken Pomerols of the vintage. Hints of blackberry, lavender, licorice and spice add nuance, but in 2016 La Conseillante stands out for its sublime balance and total sense of harmony. The 2016 spent 17 months in oak, 70% new. As gorgeous as the 2016 is, my impression is that the best is yet to come. Since arriving at La Conseillante, Cazaux has changed much in the farming of the property, including introducing cover crops and limiting yields. She also now works with no sulfites in winemaking and opts for lower temperatures in fermentation. In other words, the full results of all of that work is yet to be seen. For now, though, the 2016 Conseillante is a pretty special wine. Don't miss it. Tasted two times.

Score: 97

Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com Maturity: 2026-2041 01 January 2019

The 2016 La Conseillante is one of the undisputed stars of the vintage. Dark, rich and voluptuous, with no hard edges and exceptional balance, the 2016 has been simply extraordinary on the two occasions I have tasted it so far. Black cherry, plum, chocolate, lavender and spice notes flesh out in the glass, but it is the wine's textural feel and overall balance that stand out most. The 2016 is plush, deep and textured, yet retains the super-classic midweight feel that is such a Conseillante signature.

Score: 95 - 98

Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com 25 April 2017

The 2016 La Conseillante has been on a roll since winemaker Marielle Cazaux took over the running of the estate. It has a very well defined, almost crystalline bouquet of discreet but sophisticated blackberry, briar, mineral and light floral notes. Over the course of 20 minutes, it reveals more plum-like scents and a hint of a cold northern sea. The medium-bodied palate offers crisp tannin, good balance, a silky-smooth texture and a poised and quite linear, classically inspired finish. There are subtle flecks of dark chocolate on the aftertaste. This is a surprisingly understated La Conseillante that will repay long-term cellaring.

Score: 97

Neal Martin, Vinous.com Maturity: 2022-2045 01 January 2019

The 2016 La Conseillante is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc picked from 22 September to 13 October and 12-17 October at 39.5 hectoliters per hectare. Winemaker Marielle Cazaux told me that there is 13.8% alcohol, nearly one degree less than in 2015, with a pH of 3.65 and it is matured in 70% new oak. This has a succinct bouquet that is stylistically not that far removed from its neighbor Vieux Château Certan: detailed and understated at first with scents of blackberry, wild hedgerow and a touch of pressed flowers. The palate is very well balanced with a fine backbone, but what really marks out this La Conseillante is the salinity that comes through on the second half. It exerts a gentle grip in the mouth, reveals a little spiciness towards the finish whereupon it gently fans out, leaving a touch of black pepper on the saline aftertaste. This is a classic La Conseillante and the best since the majestic 2010. Similar to that vintage, it will require several years in bottle, but it will be well worth the wait.

Score: 96 - 98

Neal Martin, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2023-2060 28 April 2017

The 2016 La Conseillante is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc aged in 70% new and 30% one-year-old French oak for 17 months. Deep garnet-purple colored, it slips provocatively out of the glass with a lifted perfume of roses, candied violets and lavender over a core of warm red and black plums, chocolate box, unsmoked cigars and baked cherries with wafts of wild thyme and tilled soil. Medium-bodied, the palate exudes polish and sophistication with bags of fragrance, freshness and energy, sporting exquisitely fine-grained tannins and finishing very long and minerally. Around 3,808 cases produced.

Score: 98

Lisa Perotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate Maturity: 2022-2057 30 November 2018

This is a big wine, from the colour to the stunning level of fruit and tannin extraction that is not overdone, but is certainly evident. Gorgeous violets and blackberries run through the palate and slightly chewy tannins are extremely well-integrated with the oak. At first you think this carries on the slightly more swaggering style of La Conseillante seen in recent years, with black fleshed fruits and high drama, but as it unfurls in the glass you reclaim also the more floral, vibrant and elegant touches that suggest the heart of this property is unchanged. A touch austere, but that's what you want for long ageing. There is around one degree less alcohol than in 2015, even though they finished picking later. For me, this is a more classic La Conseillante than 2015. The aromatics are just so striking. This is the second year of using biodynamic preparations across the whole vineyard. Michel Rolland consults. 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc aged in 70% new oak.

Score: 96

Decanter Maturity: 2027-2050 21 April 2017

A pretty nose with floral hints. Dense with sweetly ripe opulent fruit explodes on the palate. Round and subtle with seamless tannins. An excellent Conseillante which the owner considers to be the best since 2000.

Score: 96 - 98

Albany Vintners 19 April 2017

Not as aromatic as some of the very top Pomerols. Lovely texture but not as expressive as some. A hint of soapiness. Lots of texture buried under the substance here but needs time for the flavour to develop. Lots to chew on. (17+ Points)

Score: 17

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com Maturity: 2026-2040 12 April 2017

Bright raspberry and blackberry confiture flavors fill out nicely as they move along, followed by a well-buried graphite edge and a flash of cocoa at the very end. Has a vivid display of fruit and the buried spine to back it up.

Score: 93 - 96

James Molesworth, Wine Spectator 06 April 2017

This is the greatest Conseillante in modern times. Full body and incredible tannins that are polished and velvety. The texture lasts for minutes. I am speechless. What a young and awe-inspiring wine!

Score: 99 - 100

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com 24 March 2017