Chateau Angelus 1989
Possibly not showing as well as a bottle I had recently from my own cellar, this particular offering, which was about 50% Cabernet Franc and the rest Merlot, has a dark plum/purple color, but is still quite youthful. A beautiful sweet blueberry and blackberry-scented nose of olive, licorice and cedar wood is followed by a full-bodied and opulent wine, with hints of espresso roast and chocolate as well. It seemed to gain a lot in the glass, but the astringent tannins in the finish still seem a bit awkward and distracting. I think bottles I’ve had have generally shown better, although this is certainly an exceptional wine. It has just suffered somewhat in comparison with several of the other vintages. Drink now to 2030.|||The Boüard family, the proprietors of Château Angelus, date from 1544 in St.-Emilion. Located on lower hillsides, with a southerly exposure, their 67-acre vineyard, composed of sandstone, limestone and clay, is planted with 47% Cabernet Franc, 50% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Sauvignon.
Hubert de Boüard, who single-handedly elevated the quality from one of mediocrity (vintages such as 1978, 1982, 1983, and 1985 were disappointing), hit pay dirt with his efforts starting in 1988. Since then, there has been a remarkable succession of great wines.
Radical viticulture such as crop-thinning, shoot-positioning and the immensely labour-intensive manual destemming are employed. Both a second and third wine are made, as the selection process for Angelus is severe. All of this resulted in the 2012 Angelus being upgraded, along with Pavie, to Premier Grand Cru Classé A, joining Cheval Blanc and Ausone as one of only four estates in St.-Emilion to receive this accolade.
Aging takes place in 100% new oak for 18-24 months, after which the wine is bottled with neither fining nor filtration. eRobertParker.com.