The 2018 Phélan-Ségur is often tricky to assess from barrel. This comes across rather awkward on the nose, a little green around the edges perhaps. The palate is medium-bodied with chewy, slightly rough tannins with an assertive, tarry finish that lacks a bit of grace. It often surprises once in bottle, but at the moment, it does not appeal as much as I anticipated, which means I wll probably be upgrading my score once tasted blind in bottle!
|Score: 90/92||Neal Martin, vinous.com, November 2019|
The 2018 Phélan Ségur is a blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Merlot, harvested from September 14 to October 4. The wine comes in at 14% alcohol, 3.8 pH and has an IPT (total polyphenol index) of 77. Deep purple-black in color, it springs from the glass with bright, vibrant notes of raspberry preserves, kirsch and ripe blackcurrants with hints of rose petals, tilled black soil, spice cake and warm plums plus a waft of star anise. Medium to full-bodied with a solid backbone of grainy tannins and seamless freshness, the palate sports a taut, muscular fruit profile with loads of bright red fruit sparks and a long, earthy finish.
|Score: 93/95||Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (April 2019), April 2019|
This is the most powerful Phélan Segur I have ever tasted. A solid core of dense fruit and layered tannins that are so refined and polished. Remains fresh, energetic and bright. Yet, there’s plenty of harmony and balance.
|Score: 95/96||James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2019|
The 2018 Phélan Ségur is another in a strong series of wines from this re-born property. Deep and persistent on the palate, the 2018 has a lot to offer. Dark cherry, plum, graphite, menthol, spice and licorice all build in a super-expressive, delineated yet dense Saint-Estèphe loaded with personality. The 2018 finishes with serious intensity and structure. Technical Director Fabrice Bacquey opted for cooler macerations and short cuvaisons, especially for the Merlots, as the fruit was especially rich and the wines extracted easily, while the Cabernets were fermented more or less as usual. Yields were 49 hectoliters per hectare, a bit higher than the 20-year average of 44 and inline with other recent vintages such as 2015, 2016 and 2017. The blend is 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Merlot. Tasted three times.
|Score: 91/94||Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, May 2019|
57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot. Harvested 24 September to 11 October. 49 hl/ha. TA 3.1 (expressed as sulphuric). Barrel sample.
Deepest purple. Pure if slightly charry blackcurrant fruit. Dark-chocolate notes add another layer but not sweetness. Chewy, thick, dry but not tough tannins. Tongue-tied and not ready to be tasted, let alone drunk, for some time. Quite oaky. Chewy on the finish but there's plenty of compact fruit too – just all so dense that it is tied up on itself. More aromatic in the empty glass – the sweet black fruit and a hint of violets. Needs time to open in the glass just as it needs time in bottle. My score is based on the hope that it will eventually unfurl. (JH) 14%
|Score: 17||Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2019|
Inky black in colour with a cedary, blackcurrant driven nose. The palate is smooth, with fresh black fruit and supple tannins. The juicy fruit at the core is pure and approachable, and leads to a pure, long finish.
|Score: 15.5||Farr Vintners, Farr Tasting, April 2019|
The 2018 Château Phélan Ségur is another winner from director Véronique Dausse that does everything right. A blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Merlot, its deep purple color is followed by a deep, rich, medium to full-bodied Saint-Estèphe that has thrilling purity of fruit, terrific concentration, and ripe tannins. You can’t go wrong on this one. It will benefit from 3-4 years of bottle age and keep for 15-20 years or more. It should match or exceed the brilliant 2016.
|Score: 92/94+||Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, May 2019|
This is good quality in 2018, as it has consistently been over the past few vintages. It has a silky texture and is powerful but restrained, displaying the freshness and power of the clay that underpins the soils here and demonstrating just how good the Merlots were when they were picked at full ripeness but not more - here they were also given one week less than usual for the extraction. There's plenty of concentration here but it's hidden, latent, reserving its energy for the long haul. Harvest took place between 24 September and 11 October, with a good yield of 49hl/ha. 60% of the production went into the grand vin. 3.8pH. 77IPT.
Drinking Window 2026 - 2040
|Score: 94||Jane Anson, Decanter.com, April 2019|
(57 Cabernet Sauvignon, 43 Merlot) | 55% new oak | 14% alc | 49 hl/ha | 77 IPT A little short and square, this is a decent effort, but in the context of the vintage it lacks fruit intensity and directness given its level of alcohol and extraction.
|Score: 16+||Matthew Jukes, MatthewJukes.com, April 2019|