2021 Château Nenin, Pomerol, Bordeaux

2021 Château Nenin, Pomerol, Bordeaux

Product: 20218123682
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2021 Château Nenin, Pomerol, Bordeaux

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Merlot 64%, Cabernet Franc 36%

Like many châteaux whose terroir can tend towards bigger-boned wines, Nénin has probably benefitted from the level of restraint provided by 2021. Jean-Hubert Delon and his team have made considerable strides during the past decade towards building finesse into Nénin’s more naturally solid style; the rewards are evident here. The wine starts with more energy than before and, whilst the more muscular aspect of the wine is not ignored, there are brighter notes of cherry and plum. Nénin always needs time; this is no exception. Drink 2027-2042.

Our score: 16/20

Berry Bros. & Rudd, April 2022

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Critics reviews

Neal Martin, Vinous90-92/100

The 2021 Nénin includes 36% Cabernet Franc this year, picked from 25 September until 4 October and raised in 35% new oak. There is plenty of blue fruit on the nose, a touch of crushed violet and Indian ink, quite forward and precocious for the growing season. The palate is medium-bodied with a velvety smooth opening, the new oak neatly integrated, fine acidity with a gentle grip on the finish where the Cabernet Franc subtle tobacco and slightly ferrous notes. Good potential. 13.31% alcohol

Drink 2028 - 2045

Neal Martin, vinous.com, (May 2022) Read more

Jane Anson93/100

They believe in structure at Nenin to be identified as Domaines Delon, even within the universe of Pomerol, and you can feel it here, along with the high levels of Cabernet Franc. There is Pomerol exuberance also, with smoked butterscotch notes on the opening beats, and plenty of blackberry and black cherry fruits, along with the signature pencil lead, graphite and crushed earth. This is not exuberant but entirely within the classic estate signature, with a kick of bitter almond on the finish, and a hint of iodine. 65IPT. Harvest September 23 to October 4. 35% new oak, 3.53ph. No frost impact here, but 21 nights of fighting it through the early season

Drink 2026 - 2040

Jane Anson, janeanson.com (May 2022) Read more

Wine Advocate93-94+/100

I was immensely impressed by the quality of the 2021 Nenin, a wine that's the fruit of an immensely strict selection—and several consecutive nights of frost protection. Offering up aromas of sweet plums, wild berries, raw cocoa, black truffles and nicely integrated new oak, it's a medium to full-bodied, supple and velvety wine with lively acids, melting tannins and a layered, concentrated profile with a long, penetrating finish. Tasted twice.

William Kelley, Wine Advocate (Apr 2022) Read more

Jancis Robinson MW16+/20

Elegant and fresh with tidy tannins. Aromatic for Nénin at this stage. Clean if not full throttle. Slight oak presence. Should improve with élevage.

Drink 2026 - 2036

James Lawther, jancisrobinson.com (May 2022) Read more

James Suckling93-94/100

Very fine tannins with a medium body and a fresh center-palate. Hints of spices and dried lemon peel. Bright and focused. Pretty fruit. Refined.

James Suckling, jamessuckling.com (May 2022) Read more

About this WINE

Château Nénin

Château Nénin

Château Nénin is a rather large property in the appellation of Pomerol on Bordeaux’s Right Bank. It’s located just outside the village of Catusseau. Jean-Hubert Delon, proprietor of Château Léoville Las Cases, long knew Château Nénin’s potential; he bought it from the Despujol family in 1997. The Delon family quickly got to work, with major investment and renovation in the vineyard and the winery – replanting a huge amount of the vineyard to best suit the soils here. Of the estate’s 32 hectares, around 25 are currently in production, planted to Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Unusually for Pomerol, most plantings are in one block, which is surrounded on two sides by Château Trotanoy. There’s also a smaller plot near Le Pin.

The Cabernet Franc here is the result of massal selection of Léoville Las Cases. The technical team here believe that this enhances the purity and elegance of the fruit. The use of new oak is relatively restrained, with experiments underway with alternative vessels including glass vats, large oak vessels and terracotta. The property benefits greatly from the Delon family’s Left Bank savoir-faire, but it remains true to its Pomerol roots. This is an ever-more precise and elegant Pomerol, with huge ageing potential and offering value for money.

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Pomerol is the smallest of Bordeaux's major appellations, with about 150 producers and approximately 740 hectares of vineyards. It is home to many bijou domaines, many of which produce little more than 1,000 cases per annum.

Both the topography and architecture of the region is unremarkable, but the style of the wines is most individual. The finest vineyards are planted on a seam of rich clay which extends across the gently-elevated plateau of Pomerol, which runs from the north-eastern boundary of St Emilion. On the sides of the plateau, the soil becomes sandier and the wines lighter.

For a long time Pomerol was regarded as the poor relation of St Emilion, but the efforts of Jean-Pierre Moueix in the mid-20th century brought the wine to the attention of more export markets, where its fleshy, intense and muscular style found a willing audience, in turn leading to surge in prices led by the demand for such limited quantities.

There is one satellite region to the immediate north, Lalande-de-Pomerol whose wines are stylistically very similar, if sometimes lacking the finesse of its neighbour. There has never been a classification of Pomerol wines.

Recommended Châteaux : Ch. Pétrus, Vieux Ch. Certan, Le Pin, Ch. L’Eglise-Clinet, Ch. La Conseillante, Ch. L’Evangile, Ch. Lafleur, Trotanoy, Ch. Nenin, Ch. Beauregard, Ch. Feytit-Clinet, Le Gay.

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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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