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Capbern 2018

Subregion France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > St Estèphe
Grape VarietyCabernet Sauvignon/Merlot

This Saint Estephe property was formerly known as Capbern Gasqueton and has the same owners and wine-making team as Calon Ségur. The vineyard is 38 hectares and planted 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 46% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot. It is situated, in one block, between Phelan Segur and Meyney. Quality has jumped massively in recent vintages and this is clearly a source of one of Bordeaux's best bargains.

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Tasting Notes

The 2018 Château Capbern checks in as a Cabernet Sauvignon-dominated blend that includes 37% Merlot and 1% Petit Verdot, all of which was brought up in 60% new barrels. It has a deep, dark, earthy, classic Saint-Estèphe bouquet that gives up lots of cassis and almost blue fruits as well as ample chocolate, damp earth, and leafy herb-like aromas and flavors. With a full-bodied, rich, opulent mouthfeel, loads of sumptuous dark fruits, sweet tannins, and a great finish, this brilliant 2018 brings lots of fruit and opulence, yet stays weightless and balanced, with solid underlying structure. A hidden gem in the vintage, this is every bit as good as the 2016, and it's going to shine for two decades or more.

Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, March 2021

A juicy and savory red with currant, walnut, mushroom and cedar aromas that follow through to a medium body with firm tannins and a savory finish. Drink after 2023.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, January 2021

The 2018 Capbern is composed of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot and 1% Petit Verdot and comes in at 14.6% alcohol. It's anticipated to age for 16 months in barriques, 60% new. Deep purple-black in color, it leaps from the glass with vibrant scents of black raspberries, kirsch and fresh blackcurrants with nuances of cedar chest, pencil lead and forest floor plus a waft of lavender. Full-bodied, rich and packed with juicy fruit, it has a firm line of grainy tannins and loads of freshness, finishing with an herbal lift.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (April 2019), April 2019

A tasty, extremely appetising Capbern that, after tasting, makes you you already look forward to drinking in bottle. It has a real elegance to its black fruits, and the tannins have a softness and succulence to them, leading on to a mouthwatering finish. Harvest took place between 19 September and 8 October, around one week earlier than in a classic year according to Laurent Dufau, and yielding 37hl/ha. 3.7pH. 60% new oak.

Drinking Window 2024 - 2036

Jane Anson, Decanter.com, April 2019

Tasted blind. Mild and well-balanced nose and rather rustic tannins on the palate. Grainy, alcoholic finish. 15%
Drink 2027 – 2037

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, February 2022

62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot. pH 3.75, 60% new oak. Barrel sample.
Deepest purple. Dark and stony, lovely slaty nose. Firm, chalky, dense and still with lovely freshness. Not the same richness as the 2009 but with great purity and definition. More serious, less seduction. Long and great structure. So pure in its dark cassis fruit. Cool with a touch of liquorice on the finish. (JH) 14.6%
Drink 2023-2029

Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2019

Deep ruby in the glass, with a pure, ripe nose of cassis and morello cherries. There is spice too, adding subtle hints of sweet vanilla and nutmeg. The palate is forward and generous, the plump black fruit at the core gently framed by supple tannins that give a succulent texture. Juicy, warming and ripe with a fleshy, expansive finish.

Farr Vintners, Farr Tasting, April 2019

(A single block wine which used to be known as Capbern Gasqueton) (62 Cabernet Sauvignon, 37 Merlot, 1 Petit Verdot) | 60% new oak – will be matured for 18 months 14.6% alc | 3.65 pH | 41 hl/ha | 77 IPT Calon Ségur winemaker Vincent Millet explained that this is a peculiar vintage because while the alcohol is high the pH is low (high acid) and so therefore the balance experience here is incredible. Exotic, clean and crunchy and also singularly bright and plummy, this is a terrific wine and it is set to be a bargain, too (I hope). They logged 750mm of rain between January and June and then it changed to only 30mm in July, 30mm in August and only 15mm in September. The vineyards didn’t suffer at all during the year and there was little incidence of mildew in Saint-Estèphe. I find that this has amazing balance and also that this is a vintage which is hard to compare with any other.

Matthew Jukes, MatthewJukes.com, April 2019
Read more tasting notes...

A fresh and firm Capbern with lots of dark berries, chocolate and hints of hazelnuts. Medium to full body and dense, lightly chewy tannins. Mineral undertone.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2019

From the team at Calon Ségur, the 2018 Château Capbern is another smoking good Saint-Estèphe. In 2018 it’s a blend of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, and the rest Petit Verdot that will spend 18 months in 60% new French oak. This ripe, sexy wine (it hit 14.6% natural alcohol) sports a deep purple color as well as blockbuster notes of crème de cassis, jammy blackberries, crushed flowers, and scorched earth. Despite all the fruit and texture, it stays beautifully balanced, has classic Saint-Estèphe earthy minerality, ripe tannins, and a great finish.

Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, May 2019
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.