La Clotte 2018

SubregionSt Emilion

Situated in the valley just 400 metres from Ausone, this 4 hectare property (of which only 2.5 hectares are in production) was bought by the Vauthier family in 2014. The vines average 55 years and are 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. The 2018 here is the best yet and there will be 1000 cases produced.


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Tasting Notes

Deep colour, with rich leather and liquorice accompanying the dark fruit on the nose. The palate is chock full of dark, ripe fruits and is framed by plentiful but ripe tannins. This is hedonistic and seductive, with sweet vanilla, brambly fruit and a silky texture. Long, pure and smoky on the finish, this will be delicious from youth but have a long drinking window.

Score: 16Farr Vintners, Farr Tasting, April 2019

The 2018 La Clotte is made up of 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. Deep purple-black in color, it leaps from the glass with gregarious scents of crushed blueberries, Morello cherries and black raspberries with touches of oolong tea, violets, mocha and cigar box plus a waft of cedar. Full-bodied with a solid frame of fine-grained tannins and oodles of freshness, it is packed with vibrant black and blue fruits layers, finishing long with great purity.

Score: 93/95+Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (April 2019), April 2019

A tight and firm red with dark berries and wet earth. Medium-bodied, racy and bright. Shows tension and structure for the vintage.

Score: 93/94James Suckling,, April 2019

The 2018 La Clotte is fabulous. In fact, I don’t remember a recent vintage that has been anywhere near as compelling as the 2018. Striking aromatics give the 2018 dimension and nuance. On the palate, the wine is every bit as arresting in its beauty. Rose petal, mint, sage, lavender and blood orange add vivacity throughout. The Franc really comes through in the wine's aromatic profile and saline-infused finish. I loved it.

Score: 93/96Antonio Galloni,, May 2019

Black core, purple rim. A touch of alcohol on the nose but the samples are a bit warm, which is highlighting the alcohol. Sweet, ripe and dark-fruited. Quite oaky even though there's so much depth of ripe fruit. Chewy, dense and powerful. Could do with a little more freshness.
Drink 2023-2030

Score: 16Julia Harding MW,, April 2019

From an estate purchased by Ausone in 2014, the 2018 Château La Clotte looks to be a sensational wine in the making, and I think it’s probably going to surpass both the 2015 and 2016. A blend of 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 5% Cabernet Franc, this deeply colored Saint-Émilion offers a smoky, blackcurrant, black cherry, and graphite-driven bouquet. This carries to a medium to full-bodied red that has a stacked mid-palate, tons of ripe, sexy fruit, building tannins, and a great finish. It’s a brilliant Saint-Émilion that’s going to need short-term cellaring but will cruise in cool cellars for two decades or more.

Score: 94/96+Jeb Dunnuck,, May 2019

(85 Merlot, 10 Cabernet Sauvignon, 5 Cabernet Franc) | 100% new oak for 18 months | The Merlot was picked on the 27th September and 2nd October and the Cabernets were picked on the 9th October Always a delicious and rewarding wine, in 2018 this is a fleshy and expressive La Clotte and the fruit is juicy and ripe. The oak is incredible fine, too, given that it is all new. With a raspberry and cherry perfume and a sleek texture, this is a superb wine in this vintage and it will age slowly for twenty years.

Score: 17.5+Matthew Jukes,, April 2019

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