2020 Château Troplong Mondot, St Emilion, Bordeaux

2020 Château Troplong Mondot, St Emilion, Bordeaux

Product: 20208015141
 
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2020 Château Troplong Mondot, St Emilion, Bordeaux

Description

Merlot 85%, Cabernet Sauvignon 13%, Cabernet Franc 2%

Aymeric de Gironde will want to avoid the hubris of saying it, so we will: this is the best Troplong for two decades. In his words, it’s “a year to forget, a vintage to keep”. There’s an admirable purpose throughout this wine, from the first notes of myrtle, juniper and marinated fruits; through the woven and graceful tannins; and to the deft and bright final impression. Troplong has a powerful terroir. No attempt is made to hide it, but nor is it exaggerated into a heavyweight expression, as was often the case up to 2017.

Drink 2027-2050

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Critics reviews

Jane Anson97/100
Antonio Galloni, Vinous93-95/100
Neal Martin, Vinous94-96/100
Wine Advocate95-97+/100
Jancis Robinson MW17+/20
James Suckling98-99/100
Jeb Dunnuck96-98/100
Michael Schuster94-96/100
Jane Anson97/100
Inky in colour, this is utterly gorgeous, so much purity and definition on the nose. Things start out intense, with crushing tannins, then it steps up and back, with a delicate but juicy slate and crushed rock minerality flooding in. Great physicality, with a push and pull that goes from power to lightness of touch. I assume it will gain a little more weight over ageing, but this is exceptionally well controlled. Crushed blackcurrant and blackberry fruits, with chalky tannins and savoury Cabernet florals. 60% new oak. 3.53pH. The new cellar will be used for vinification from the 2021 vintage, with this vintage aged in the new barrel cellars. No malolactic fermentation in barrel since the 2019 vintage. Just 2mm of rain in July and 30mm in August but the deep clay-limestones at Troplong kept their freshness, and there were no blockages in ripening. Thomas Duclos consultant.

Drink from 2028 to 2044

Jane Anson, Decanter (April 2021) Read more
Antonio Galloni, Vinous93-95/100
The 2020 Troplong Mondot is another strong showing from the estate under the direction of Aymeric de Gironde. Exotic and voluptuous, the 2020 is endowed with terrific depth and plenty of layers that unfold over time. Raspberry jam, cloves, kirsch and lavender all flesh out beautifully in the glass. Troplong Mondot has been exceptionally fine since 2017, when the new team headed by de Gironde took over and began to focus on giving the Grand Vin more energy. In the 2020, though, I see less of the vibrancy and brilliance that has defined the new style at Troplong. Tasted two times.

Drink from 2035 to 2050

Antonio Galloni, Vinous (June 2021) Read more
Neal Martin, Vinous94-96/100
The 2020 Troplong Mondot was tasted from two samples, both directly from the estate, but with two prelèvements because Aymeric de Gironde was not content with the showing of the first. Indeed, the second, which was tasted the following day (yes, bottles arrived quickly) did show slightly better, even if there was not an enormous difference. It has a deep garnet hue, yet the nose is initially backward and demands about an hour to really open and say what it wants to say. The nuanced bouquet features a mixture of red and black fruit, touches of iris flower, sea spray and a touch of Earl Grey. This is typical of the more elegant, terroir-driven style introduced under Aymeric de Gironde. The palate is medium-bodied with crunchy red fruit, cranberry and raspberry mixed with truffle and a pinch of sea salt. The acidity is well judged and it conveys palpable energy on the finish. This is a delicious and characterful Saint-Émilion, fresh and vibrant, that will fill out and gain depth during its barrel maturation. Excellent.

Drink from 2027 to 2050

Neal Martin, Vinous (May 2021) Read more
Wine Advocate95-97+/100
The 2020 Troplong Mondot is composed of 85% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Cabernet Franc, harvested from 4th September and lasting for about three weeks. The pH is 3.53, the IPT (tannin index) is 75 and the alcohol is 14.5%. Opaque purple-black colored, it opens with a vivacious burst of black fruits—stewed plums, baked blackberries and boysenberries—giving way to a fragrant undercurrent of licorice, ground cloves, cinnamon stick and lilacs, with a touch of bouquet garni. The full-bodied palate is chock-full of plump, juicy black fruits and savory sparks, framed by fantastically ripe, fine-grained tannins and bold freshness, finishing long and opulent. 

Drink 2026 - 2052

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (May 2021) Read more
Jancis Robinson MW17+/20
Cask sample. Aromatically a little awkward at present (oak and a bit of oxidation?) but palate clearly defined with crunchy fruit, suave texture and chalky freshness. Impressive structure of finely crafted tannins and a real sense of terroir displayed. Definite potential.

Drink 2028 - 2040

James Lawther MW, jancisrobinson.com (May 2021) Read more
James Suckling98-99/100
This has superb depth and intensity with very fine tannins that draw you down. So much black fruit, together with black pepper and salt. Extremely well crafted. Vertical and deep. Chalky and salty with black chocolate.

James Suckling, jamessuckling.com (April 2021) Read more
Jeb Dunnuck96-98/100
I’d wager the finest vintage here since the 2015, then the 2009, the 2020 Château Troplong Mondot is a blend of 85% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, and the balance Cabernet Franc. It offers a dense purple hue as well as powerful, unevolved aromas and flavors of pure crème de cassis, black cherries, graphite, gravelly earth, and tobacco. Coming from the highest elevation vineyard in the appellation and deeper, clay soils (which excelled in 2020), it’s medium to full-bodied and has a dense, thick mid-palate, building tannins, and a great finish. It’s not for the instant gratification crowd out there, but it’s going to be incredibly long-lived. Hats off to the team at Troplong Mondot as well as oenologist Thomas Duclos.

Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com (May 2021) Read more
Michael Schuster94-96/100
Very ripe, plummy Merlot nose; rich, firm, very finely tannic, a fine constitution and a really beautiful balance; deep, sweet, long, and racy, with both density and freshness, an understated wine that is both relatively large in scale and yet discreet and absolutely effortless, too; very mineral behind the ripe, fleshy fruit, prolonged, graceful, constantly vibrant, and with lovely fruit persistence to finish. Very classy. Splendid wine, with a tannin texture so fine that this is likely to be deliciously enjoyable relative early, too. A world apart, and a much more attractive one, from the run of heavyweights that preceded Aymeric de Gironde’s first vintage in 2018. 

Drink 2028 - 2060

Michael Schuster, The World of Fine Wine (May 2021) Read more

About this WINE

Château Troplong Mondot

Château Troplong Mondot

Château Troplong Mondot is a St. Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé property that has in the last decade been producing wines that are the equal of many 1er Grand Cru Classé estates. Its handsome château dates back to 1745 and Troplong-Mondot was originally part of one sizeable domaine which included the vineyards of Château Pavie. It became autonomous in 1850 when it was acquired by Raymond Troplong. Later on, it was bought by Alexandre Valette and today it is owned and run by his great-granddaughter, Christine and her husband Xavier Pariente.

Troplong Mondot has 30 hectares of vineyards well-sited alongside the hill of Mondot to the north-east of the St-Emilion appellation. The soils are rich in limestone clay and are planted with Merlot (90%), Cabernet Franc (5%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (5%). The grapes are hand-harvested and then fermented in temperature-controlled, stainless steel tanks. The wine is then aged in oak barriques (75% new) for 18 months. It is bottled unfiltered.

Guru oenologist Michel Rolland has been a consultant at Troplong Mondot since the mid 1980s.

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St-Emilion

St-Emilion

St Emilion is one of Bordeaux's largest producing appellations, producing more wine than Listrac, Moulis, St Estèphe, Pauillac, St Julien and Margaux put together. St Emilion has been producing wine for longer than the Médoc but its lack of accessibility to Bordeaux's port and market-restricted exports to mainland Europe meant the region initially did not enjoy the commercial success that funded the great châteaux of the Left Bank. 

St Emilion itself is the prettiest of Bordeaux's wine towns, perched on top of the steep limestone slopes upon which many of the region's finest vineyards are situated. However, more than half of the appellation's vineyards lie on the plain between the town and the Dordogne River on sandy, alluvial soils with a sprinkling of gravel. 

Further diversity is added by a small, complex gravel bed to the north-east of the region on the border with Pomerol.  Atypically for St Emilion, this allows Cabernet Franc and, to a lesser extent, Cabernet Sauvignon to prosper and defines the personality of the great wines such as Ch. Cheval Blanc.  

In the early 1990s there was an explosion of experimentation and evolution, leading to the rise of the garagistes, producers of deeply-concentrated wines made in very small quantities and offered at high prices.  The appellation is also surrounded by four satellite appellations, Montagne, Lussac, Puisseguin and St. Georges, which enjoy a family similarity but not the complexity of the best wines.

St Emilion was first officially classified in 1954, and is the most meritocratic classification system in Bordeaux, as it is regularly amended. The most recent revision of the classification was in 2012

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Merlot

Merlot

The most widely planted grape in Bordeaux and a grape that has been on a relentless expansion drive throughout the world in the last decade. Merlot is adaptable to most soils and is relatively simple to cultivate. It is a vigorous naturally high yielding grape that requires savage pruning - over-cropped Merlot-based wines are dilute and bland. It is also vital to pick at optimum ripeness as Merlot can quickly lose its varietal characteristics if harvested overripe.

In St.Emilion and Pomerol it withstands the moist clay rich soils far better than Cabernet grapes, and at it best produces opulently rich, plummy clarets with succulent fruitcake-like nuances. Le Pin, Pétrus and Clinet are examples of hedonistically rich Merlot wines at their very best. It also plays a key supporting role in filling out the middle palate of the Cabernet-dominated wines of the Médoc and Graves.

Merlot is now grown in virtually all wine growing countries and is particularly successful in California, Chile and Northern Italy.

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