What an astonishing year with, in six months, more rainfall than normally in a whole year! Except for a good flowering, the weather conditions made life difficult in the vines up till mid-July. While the estate is totally committed to its conversion to organic growing, the season proved difficult. However, constant vigilance, dogged determination, rigour and monitoring on a daily basis enabled us to overcome these difficulties and bring in, on the one hand, a normal-sized crop, and on the other, a magnificent one –an amazing feat given the context. From July 15th on, outstanding anti-cyclonic conditions set in and lasted right up till the end of the picking, the only interruption being a few necessary rain showers that arrived with perfect timing to restore the vines’ energy. While temperatures were high, they were never extreme, unlike the 2003 vintage, for example. The nights were cool, and the substantial water reserves brought by the spring rain, enabled excellent photosynthesis to take place. The grapes were able to ripen without ever being burned by the sun, resulting in a vintage marked by the freshness of its fruit character. At Angélus, with a harvesting tailored to the grapes’ ripeness, the thick-skinned berries reached perfect ripeness, producing refined, velvety tannins. The grape pips ripened very early, displaying a dark brown colour -a rare occurrence that merits mentioning, and which helped provide outstanding, stable polyphenol qualities. Despite the very hot summer, the acidities were maintained right to the end, giving the first wines tasted a sapidity, balance, freshness and elegance worthy of the greatest vintages.
After a very favourable start to the growing season with a very early bud-break, the vine cycle was delayed at the end of April by a frost which hit the Bordeaux region very severely. At Angélus, where nature was kind, we were mostly spared this sad episode. However, over the small area affected by the frost, substantial selection work was carried out. The rest of the season went wonderfully smoothly with an excellent flowering, followed by a very hot month of June which boosted the vines’ energy levels and gave them the strength they needed to develop high quality grapes. A quite cool but dry summer allowed the grapes to ripen slowly and evenly, which favoured fresh fruit aromatic expression.
The end of summer weather was a little rainy; however, with the grapes already ripe we decided to begin harvesting on September 13th!
The wines have deep colour, while on the nose they show immediate charm and pure aromatics bursting with fruit. On the palate, the tannins are tight-grained and silky, precise and in good balance with flesh and great freshness that brings energy and mouth-watering length of flavour.
2017 at Angélus is both harmonious and bursting with fruit flavour.
3 months of summer without water: never before seen in the living memory of winegrowers! This surprising weather, and these incredible conditions, promise us a great, unpredictable and unexpected vintage. Until 20 June, the weather did not spare us, inflicting very heavy rainfall of about 750 mm, which corresponds to the total annual rainfall for a dry year in Bordeaux... In spite of these conditions, flowering went well. Fine weather set in from the last week of June and, quite remarkably, remained right up to the harvest. We had a sunny but rather cool July, with cold nights. By the end of July, the sea temperature was much lower than usual for this period. And not a drop of rain. August saw temperatures climb, with heatwaves of over 35 degrees some days. Nevertheless, the day / night temperature ratio was 2 to 1 throughout the month, highly favourable for aromatic expression in our grapes and maintaining freshness in the fruit. To this can be added the almost complete absence of rain, only 5 to 8 mm, or the strict minimum to allow the vine to rehydrate. And that is why the very young vines began to suffer. The oldest vines, especially on clay and/or limestone soils, resisted magnificently (the limestone and clay work like sponges, absorbing water when it rains and redistributing it during drought). "In more than 35 years of observing the vineyard, I have always been accustomed to storms on 14 July and 15 August. This year, not a bit! The summer continued through September, and with it the heat: daily temperatures of 28, 30 degrees. A severe storm was forecast for mid-September. We were all quaking in our boots. But the menacing white and grey clouds finally turned into beneficial rain, first 19 then 4 mm. This rain fallen from the heavens gave back energy, strength and breath to our vineyard. Then the good weather quickly returned. The tannins are ripening slowly and picking begins at the start of October for the grands vins. The cool nights have preserved the aromas and the acidity. The weather forecast for the coming two weeks lets us look forward to a calm harvest, picking as we wish, and allowing us to hope for and expect another great vintage at Angélus! A radiant vintage in the image of this three-month summer that fixed its destiny and shaped its identity."
2015 was a blessed, dreamt-of year, with favourable weather conditions from spring to harvest. Each step took place under ideal conditions: flowering was even, and then the necessary rainfall for the growth of the vines came before the very dry months of June and July. Véraison went like a wonder. The pips started to ripen very early. August, with some timely rains and mild temperatures, allowed the vine to develop well and for the grapes to ripen in a balanced way. The fine days and cool nights in September, accompanied by some showers, favoured the ripening of the tannins.
The perfect state of health in the vineyard and the superb weather conditions of early autumn allowed us to harvest magnificent grapes as and when we wanted... over nearly a month! The Merlots from Angélus were picked from September 22, ripe but not overripe, crisp, fruity, with lots of freshness. Cabernets Francs, a gem for Angélus, were also magnificent, and were picked from October 8. It brings elegance, finesse and depth, with a silky note, and greatly contributes to enhancing this new vintage.
2015 is an excellent vintage at Angélus. Excellent in its subtle balance between power and refinement; in its intense aromatics of ripe, juicy fruit, its suave, clean entry on the palate, its tight-grained velvety tannins and its great purity. It has all the charm brought by a sun-drenched vintage with a touch of flamboyant classicism (baroque we might say), in harmonious balance with the elegance and breed brought by the freshness and tension in the lingering finish.
This great vintage started with a tricky spring and a difficult summer, but we were fiercely resolved not to give up and to read the vines and understand their needs. Then from 25th August onwards, day after day of lovely weather came along and our confidence returned. We took risks and waited to start harvesting. Finally October arrived, golden, warm and magnificent, enabling us to delay picking the old Merlot vines for a few days and wait for the Cabernet Franc grapes to ripen fully. This vintage has a very pure, elegant nose. The attack is clear, and the wine progressively gets bigger, reaching a very sophisticated balance between the magnificent quality of the tannins, substance, tension and freshness. There is 50% Cabernet Franc in the blend, which elevates the elegance of the wine’s tannic structure and makes the finish complex and long.
After a rainy spring, which triggered poor fruit set and “hens and chicks” (millerandage), July and August were especially hot and dry months, which provided the right conditions for the grapes to develop the basic requirements: the polyphenol quality in the skins and pip ripeness. This new vintage has distinctive freshness, elegance, fruit and refined tannins.
The 2012 vintage had a tough start with a chaotic spring. Fortunately, July and August were perfect for good grape development. The nose is remarkably intense and the purity of its fruit aromas is amazing. The top quality Cabernet Franc grapes straighten out the wine’s structure and provide a great accompaniment for the velvety, tender Merlot, while contributing elegance and precision to the whole.
The weather patterns of this vintage were quite unusual and forced the estate’s teams to adapt continuously, while never letting up with grass cover crop management, tilling and early leaf removal and thinning out. These wines start with pure ripe fruit aromas. After a precise attack they display fine, silky, tight-knit tannins and a lovely mouth-filling feel. Very elegant finish.
This vintage provided clement weather for winegrowers: disease scarcely developed and a combination of sunny days and cool nights helped the development of refined polyphenols. This is a classic vintage, amazingly rich and outstandingly precise. It has a deep black colour, strong, pure aromas and an impressive, subtly expressed tannic structure. This lushness combined with its elegant freshness that comes mainly from the beautiful Cabernet Franc grapes, makes this magnificent vintage a very long-keeping wine.
This vintage benefitted from weather conditions that contributed to the production of perfectly ripe grapes. These wines are bright ink black. On the nose, the ripe fruit aromas are fresh, not jammy. Pure red cherries, raspberries, and blackberries. On the palate they display lovely concentration with substance, but are in no way heavy. Their silky tannins balance perfectly with their supple richness. These wines are powerful and concentrated, but velvet smooth and subtle too.
Since the vines were clean and disease-free, harvesting began late on 3rd October. Picking could really be carried out depending solely on the ripeness of each plot and only on fine days. The deep black Merlot with the Cabernet Franc that traditionally does so well at Angélus, produced outstandingly dense wines with thick, richly supple, round body. The aromas are reminiscent of black berries and plum as well as delicate mineral and flowery notes. Long and fresh on the palate, their concentration is expressed as a silky elegance.
In July and August the vines were very closely monitored, depending on individual needs, to compensate for the poor weather conditions of the early summer. Very fine weather in September provided superb ripening conditions. Flavours and aromas developed and the tannins matured. On tasting the wines displayed very deep colour, lovely fruity aromas with mineral notes and fresh, silky texture. Long and pure on the finish.
After an early start to growth, weather conditions in August and at the beginning of September caused slow ripening, making it possible to focus on freshness and ensure long ageing. Since the grapes were disease-free and perfectly ripe, harvesting could be carried out with full attention to detail. These wines are dense with beautiful fruity aromas and delicate grilled hints. The wines are dense, well balanced and have very elegant freshness.
A unique year with an extremely high water deficit, but good temperatures for ripening. Grape quality was memorable, both in terms of being disease-free and their balance. What makes this vintage stand out is its harmonious balance of vigour and freshness, as well as its pure aromas.
The quite worrying weather conditions at the outset, finally settled down at the end of August and became excellent until mid-October. Slow ripening brought out elegance in these wines. On tasting, they display an opaque robe and black fruit aromas. The tannins are beautifully round. The balance and freshness on the finish sum up all this vintage’s elegance.
After a hot, sunny summer, the grapes were exceptionally rich with magnificent balance and completely free of disease. The wines display beautiful aromas of red and black berries, subtle hints of roasted coffee and a touch of freshness on the palate attributable to the Cabernet Franc grapes. With their silky tannins, they have a lovely balance between vigour and velvet smoothness, as well as a very long finish.
Since the weather conditions this year were especially good for the Cabernet Franc vines, there is a large proportion of this variety in the final blend. The wines are shiny black with deep aromas of fruit, raspberry and blackcurrant and delicate spicy hints. On the palate, the ripe, pedigree tannins are magnificently balanced with the rich body, a marriage of vigour and elegance with impressive length.
Made from perfectly ripe fruit, thanks to picking over a long spread-out period, the wines are subtle, appealing and dense. Their colour is deep with purple tints, which demonstrate their capability to live for years. They display aromas of black fruit, spice and tobacco. They are very nicely balanced on the palate; the first impressions are of velvet, then the mid-palate builds up an even structure. Hints of freshness dominate the finish, reminding us of the importance of the Cabernet Franc for its elegance and subtlety as well as giving the wines plenty of ageing potential.
The dazzlingly fruity, creamy balanced Merlot were blended with the slightly generously-ripe Cabernet Franc. The wines have a purplish black robe and display aromas of blackberry, plum and blackcurrant as well as delicate hints of smoke and liquorice. They fill the mouth, are amazingly concentrated and have a magnificent tannic structure. The balance between acidity and lush richness produces a strong impression of freshness. These wines will keep for a very long time indeed.
Made from fruit off old Merlot vines and selected plots of Cabernet Franc, these wines have a lovely robe with an intense dark purple colour. The nose is expressive with aromas of chocolate, plums and sour cherries. The attack is round and velvety, the wine is thick with a lovely discrete woodiness and very silky tannins. Elegant finish.
August was especially fine and made the grapes, which were rich and perfectly disease-free, very evenly ripe. The wines are very dark with a lovely aromatic range. Fruits such as plum and blackberry combine with hints of coffee, chocolate, a slight smokiness and the freshness of liquorice. Very intense on the palate with top quality, meticulous tannins characteristic of very great vintages.
A cold episode during the vulnerable flowering period and a very drawn out colour change of the fruit led to very thorough selection in the vineyard in a year when yields were already very small. The careful work done made it possible to harvest nicely ripe grapes. The vintage expresses hints of leather, tobacco and candied prune. It is silky and elegant on the palate. Beautiful balance on the finish.
A fairly irregular year in terms of weather with warm and cool periods alternating with dry and wet episodes. The Merlot grew to be rich and subtle, while the Cabernet Franc achieved exceptional density and fruitiness. The wines are full of colour and display aromas of blackcurrant liqueur and leather. On the palate, the wines are dense and big with nicely defined structure. This vintage shows the multi-layered complexity of the great classical years.
Thanks to good weather and controlled yields, the grapes were very ripe and contained great balance. The wines are full of colour, almost opaque. The first aromatic impressions are reminiscent of candied prune, blackcurrant jelly, spice and cedar. The very large proportion of Cabernet Franc contributes menthol-flavoured tannins packed with freshness, elegance and complexity. The wines are silky and fill the mouth. The finish is beautifully balanced, creamy and lasts for minutes, a sign that this vintage will be very long-keeping.
After a lovely summer, harvesting took place in September, when the weather was a little unreliable. The high grape quality helped to make a keeping wine with very classical characteristics. With its intense black robe, the wine displays black fruit aromas combined with hints of cocoa. The mid-palate is distinctively lush and dense. The finish is multi-layered and firm, and contributes a lot of freshness and length to this very characteristic Saint-Emilion vintage.
Hot sunny weather in August contributed to producing top quality grapes, but only in the earliest ripening parts of the vineyard and where thinning out and leaf removal had been exactingly carried out. Careful selection both in the vines and the winery increased the proportion of Merlot grapes in the main wine up to about 60%. The robe is intense and deeply coloured, while aromas of blackcurrant, blueberry and blackberry combine with the complexity of candied fruit. Lush on the palate, the wine is mouth-filling, while its nicely formed tannins are silky and delicate. The finish is long and persistent, developing smoked notes with a hint of leather.
This vintage is quite distinctive at Angélus. Despite poor weather and thanks to intense efforts in the vineyard, good, ripe, disease-free grapes were finally harvested. The wines have an inky robe, the nose is complex and reminiscent of black fruit, liquorice and tobacco with hints of undergrowth. It is beautifully harmonious on the palate, mouth-filling and velvet smooth, ending up with a tight-knit tannic texture that is lovely and ripe and well-rounded. The whole displays delightful balance.
The heavy frost in April led to a late, very small harvest. The wines have lovely colour and display a complex nose of ripe fruit and coffee mixed with hints of undergrowth. Supple in structure, but full and elegant.
Magnificent weather in September made it possible to harvest each plot at the best possible time. The very high sugar and phenolic compound content of the grapes made for lush, exuberant wines. Aromas of blackberry and blackcurrant on the nose with smoky hints. Lush, mouth-filling and generous on the palate. Long, harmonious finish.
This vintage began its growth cycle extremely early and resulted in exceptionally rich, ripe fruit. Harvesting took place three weeks earlier than average. The wines have intense colour and display an impressive aromatic palette on the nose with hints of spice, tobacco and liquorice. They are rich and lush as a result of a perfect match between vigour and balance.
After a wet winter and spring, September was especially dry and contributed to the concentration of colour and tannins in the grapes. The skins were very thick. The wines have deep colour and combine breeding and elegance with a magnificent, chiselled tannic structure.