- Nick's Import
2018 Chateau Sansonnet
This 35-year-old, 6.96-hectare vineyard is planted to 6,000 vines per hectare on thin clay and limestone soils atop the Saint-Émilion plateau, just across the road from Trottevieille. It comes from the Sansonnet lieu-dit and is blended of 90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Cabernet Franc. With 15% alcohol and a deep purple-black color, the 2018 Sansonnet is a little reticent to begin, opening out to notions of stewed plums, warm cassis, blackberry coulis and fruitcake with hints of grilled meats and fried herbs. Big, rich, full and laden with massive black fruit preserves layers, it has a plush texture and spicy finish.
Lisa Perrotti-Brown - Wine Advocate
A lush and inviting style, with waves of cassis and plum puree, caressed by a velvety structure. The long and alluring finish is already well-formed. This has depth, mouthfeel and fruit to burn.
James Molesworth - Wine Spectator
A solid and linear red with very tight and polished tannins. Full-bodied, reserved and compacted. This shows serious length and structure. Graphite and spice to the dark fruit.
The 2018 Sansonnet is gorgeous. Vibrant, delineated and full of character, the 2018 has so much to offer. In 2018, Sansonnet is a bit restrained and yet it possesses terrific depth and energy in its black cherry, chocolate, licorice and menthol flavors. Always a rich wine, in 2018 Sansonnet has a good bit of freshness and that plays off its more overt leanings very nicely. The 2018 feels just a bit less extracted than some previous editions, and that is a good thing. Not to worry, though, there is plenty of richness and concentration. Sansonnet got better and better as my en primeur tastings progressed. The last of the four samples I tasted was the most impressive.
Antonio Galloni - Vinous
Another estate that I suspect has produced a best to date, the 2018 Château Sansonnet comes from a tiny 7-hectare vineyard which was purchased by Marie and Christophe Lefévère early in 2009. The vineyard itself is 35 years old and consists of a thin layer of clay sitting over the limestone plateau of Saint-Émilion. The 2018 is a blend of 90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 3% Cabernet Franc, representing 65% of the total production, that saw malolactic fermentation in barrel and is still resting in 80% new French oak. This is another rich, powerful wine from Marie and offers a thrilling bouquet of crème de cassis, crushed rock-like minerality, graphite, and liquid violets. Deep, full-bodied, and concentrated, it nevertheless stays elegant and graceful, and just glides over the palate with nothing out of place. Count me in as a fan of this rich, sexy wine that also shows terrific balance and a sense of grace. It will be drinkable with just short-term cellaring and keep for 25 years or more.