Getting to meet the newest (8th Generation) Estate Director and third female Director in the history of Chateau Angelus, Stéphanie de Boüard-Rivoal, was a huge treat for me. Add that we would meet over dinner at Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air – and taste at least five different vintages – and I was over the top with delight.
What I Learned
- In 2012 Chateau Angelus, a Premier Grand Cru, was awarded a “class A” distinction.
- The 2012 vintage bottle is completely different looking from the others with gold embossing instead of a front label. You can read more about it in this Forbes article.
- The bell shown on the label does exist, and rings three times daily. You can hear it yourself without traveling to Saint-Emilion here. There is now a chip hidden in that bell to avoid counterfeiting.
- The name Angelus is in reference to a Catholic prayer.
- The estate vineyards are predominantly Cabernet Franc and Merlot.
- Prices, between $350 to $450, can increase 100% after release. (The restaurant had one vintage for $880.)
Stéphanie was enchanting, the venue and food lovely – all eclipsed by some remarkable vintages that were chosen to show us the range and depth of the wines. We tasted in this order:
2014: (Bottled September 2016, this latest release marks the 30th vintage with a banner on the bottle). Ripe and dark with black fruit as well as raspberry, earth and smoke. Remarkably open and ready to drink. 94 Eve pts.
2012: (With a gold embossed bottle in honor of the new class A distinction.) Great fruit flavors like plum and blueberry were followed by mushroom, spice and had a great backbone. This was my favorite. 97 Eve pts.
2007: (Stéphanie said she loved this one.) Big fruit that included black plums, blackberry, a bit softer on the spice, cigar and dark tannins that were starting to soften. The red fruit really opened up in the mouth. 94 Eve pts.
2006: The fruit – red to black – had aged perfectly; the wine was dry, mildly spiced and held a perfect balance. 97 Eve pts.
2010: (Thought to be the most outstanding.) Bolder fruit, peppery, tannic, Stéphanie said it was opulent, one of the best they’ve produced, and my second favorite. 97 Eve pts.
Eve Bushman has a Level Two Intermediate Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET), a “certification in first globally-recognized course” as an American Wine Specialist ® from the North American Sommelier Association (NASA), Level 1 Sake Award from WSET, was the subject of a 60-minute Wine Immersion video, authored “Wine Etiquette for Everyone” and has served as a judge for the Long Beach Grand Cru. You can email Eve@EveWine101.com to ask a question about wine or spirits. You can also seek her marketing advice via Eve@EveBushmanConsulting.com