Fonbel 2005

SubregionSt Emilion

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Tasting Notes

A sleeper of the vintage, Ausone’s proprietor, Alain Vauthier, produces this beautiful St.-Emilion. It possesses a sumptuous bouquet of crushed rocks, incense, raspberries, boysenberries, and a touch of cherries. Some earthiness intrudes on the palate, but it adds complexity and nuance rather than detracting from the wine’s beautiful fruit. Medium to full-bodied, with admirable elegance and purity as well as ripe tannin, this beauty can be enjoyed over the next 15+ years. Drink 2008-2023.

Score: 90Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (176), April 2008

Owned by perfectionist Alain Vauthier (also the proprietor of Ausone), this brilliant sleeper of the vintage exhibits a dense ruby/purple color along with scents of crushed rocks, flowers, raspberries, blueberries, and licorice. Precise, medium-bodied, quintessentially elegant, flavorful, and broad, it should be one of the more accessible 2005s, and drink well for 10-15 years.

Score: 89/91Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (170), April 2007

Alain Vauthier, who owns this small estate, has been ratcheting up the level of quality at Fonbel just as he has at his more well-known properties, Ausone and Moulin St.-Georges. The 2005 Fonbel offers an inky/purple color, sweet aromas of flowers, crushed rocks, blueberries, and cassis, a full-bodied palate, and loads of extract, glycerin, and sweet tannin. Approachable by the standards of this vintage, it should drink well upon release, and last for 12-15 years. A sleeper!

Score: 90/92Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (164), April 2006

Score: 89James Suckling,, February 2008

This shows good blackberry and mineral character. Medium body. Simple finish.

Score: 89/91James Suckling,, March 2006

Score: 16+Jancis Robinson MW,, April 2006

This property, owned by the Vauthier family, is situated below Ausone and Moulin St Georges near Monbousquet. Alain Vauthier has created an "Ausone style" wine here which we hope will be sold for a fraction of the price. Ripe, deep and creamy. There are dark fruits, plenty of concentration, good fatness but a lovely silky-smooth texture and ripe tannins. This will make a lovely drink at a relatively early age. A delicious St Emilion that has been beautifully made - modern yet traditional, sexy yet classy. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Score: 15.5+Farr Vintners, April 2006

Good deep red. A red berry fruit bomb on the nose and palate, with a complicating gamey element. Broad and creamy-sweet wine with nicely integrated acidity. Finishes with firm, toothdusting tannins. More stuffing here than the 2007.

Score: 89Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar

Leathery, perfumed, smoothed tannins. On the lighter side of medium body. Soft and drinkable.

Score: 16.5Richard Hemming MW,, February 2011

Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.