Château Troplong Mondot 2020 Saint-Emilion 1er Grand Cru Classé B
The Wine Advocate (95-97)+ | Neal Martin 94-96 | Decanter 97 | Jeb Dunnuck 96-98
Neil Martin: 'Excellent'
- SmaakprofielKrachtig & Complex
- HerkomstFrankrijk, Bordeaux
Neal Martin (Vinous)
The 2020 Troplong Mondot was tasted from two samples, both directly from the estate, but with two prelèvements because Aymeric de Gironde was not content with the showing of the first. Indeed, the second, which was tasted the following day (yes, bottles arrived quickly) did show slightly better, even if there was not an enormous difference. It has a deep garnet hue, yet the nose is initially backward and demands about an hour to really open and say what it wants to say. The nuanced bouquet features a mixture of red and black fruit, touches of iris flower, sea spray and a touch of Earl Grey. This is typical of the more elegant, terroir-driven style introduced under Aymeric de Gironde. The palate is medium-bodied with crunchy red fruit, cranberry and raspberry mixed with truffle and a pinch of sea salt. The acidity is well judged and it conveys palpable energy on the finish. This is a delicious and characterful Saint-Émilion, fresh and vibrant, that will fill out and gain depth during its barrel maturation. Excellent.
Inky in colour, this is utterly gorgeous, so much purity and definition on the nose. Things start out intense, with crushing tannins, then it steps up and back, with a delicate but juicy slate and crushed rock minerality flooding in. Great physicality, with a push and pull that goes from power to lightness of touch. I assume it will gain a little more weight over ageing, but this is exceptionally well controlled. Crushed blackcurrant and blackberry fruits, with chalky tannins and savoury Cabernet florals. 60% new oak. 3.53pH. The new cellar will be used for vinification from the 2021 vintage, with this vintage aged in the new barrel cellars. No malolactic fermentation in barrel since the 2019 vintage. Just 2mm of rain in July and 30mm in August but the deep clay-limestones at Troplong kept their freshness, and there were no blockages in ripening. Thomas Duclos consultant.
The Wine Advocate
The 2020 Troplong Mondot is composed of 85% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Cabernet Franc, harvested from 4th September and lasting for about three weeks. The pH is 3.53, the IPT (tannin index) is 75 and the alcohol is 14.5%. Opaque purple-black colored, it opens with a vivacious burst of black fruits—stewed plums, baked blackberries and boysenberries—giving way to a fragrant undercurrent of licorice, ground cloves, cinnamon stick and lilacs, with a touch of bouquet garni. The full-bodied palate is chock-full of plump, juicy black fruits and savory sparks, framed by fantastically ripe, fine-grained tannins and bold freshness, finishing long and opulent.
I’d wager the finest vintage here since the 2015, then the 2009, the 2020 Château Troplong Mondot is a blend of 85% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, and the balance Cabernet Franc. It offers a dense purple hue as well as powerful, unevolved aromas and flavors of pure crème de cassis, black cherries, graphite, gravelly earth, and tobacco. Coming from the highest elevation vineyard in the appellation and deeper, clay soils (which excelled in 2020), it’s medium to full-bodied and has a dense, thick mid-palate, building tannins, and a great finish. It’s not for the instant gratification crowd out there, but it’s going to be incredibly long-lived. Hats off to the team at Troplong Mondot as well as oenologist Thomas Duclos.