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The sentiment behind Chateau Malescot St. Exupery’s motto “ever higher” has guided this winery on a remarkable journey; one that’s taken them from the brink of irrelevancy to a critical darling of Robert Parker. The journey marches forward with confident strides with this brilliant limited production Bordeaux blend. Winemaker Jean-Luc Zuger takes full advantage of Margaux’s legendarily well-draining soils, sourcing an exceptional mélange of Cabernet Sauvignon and other varietals to produce a magnificent selection whose full-bodied opulence and unbridled exuberance instantly remind why Bordeaux wines matter so much to wine world. Aggressive notes of black raspberry, flowers, and creme de cassis are subdued by gentle notes of forest floor and a suggestion of charcoal. Its sexy, voluptuous weight enthusiastically hugs the palate with just enough restraint to allow for a level of gentle sweetness. Supple tannins lead the journey to a long, satisfying finish.
About the Winery
Chateau’s Malescot St.-Exupery’s name is steeped in impressive lore, but it only links to part of its fascinating story. The winery derives its moniker from two former owners: Simon Malescot, who bought the estate in 1697; and Count Jean Baptiste de Saint-Exupery, who claimed property ownership from 1827 to 1853. The vineyard and winery were recognized in the famous 1855 classification as a Third Growth. The most important names associated with the winery are Paul and Roger Zuger, the father-son tandem that rescued the property from a state of disrepair in 1955 and ushered in an exciting viticultural rebirth. Today, this renewal of excellence continues to flourish strongly under Roger’s son, winemaker Jean-Luc Zuger, whose impressive skills and passion for the viticultural process results in wines that constantly nab high 90+pt wine scores from critical luminaries like Robert Parker. Jean-Luc propels the chateau’s ongoing renaissance through this exquisite red blend by sourcing grapes from Margaux, an appellation where the exquisite fruit defines the overarching Bordeaux region. Its famously gravelly, well-draining soil forces its vines to dig deeper than usual for nutrients. This struggle produces sharply concentrated grapes that practically pop with the level of complex depth that even exceeds the world’s perception of what an exemplary Bordeaux should be.
Some very rich and ripe red and dark berries here make for an impressive, engaging nose that has charming violet undertones. The palate is velvety and supple, while super smooth tannins deliver a long and plush, plum-soaked finish. Great wine and already drinking well. Try from 2023. ~97JS
Lovely steeped plum, fig and blackberry fruit is melded thoroughly with notes of alder, lilac and warm tar, giving this both treble and bass, while velvety tannins carry the finish with ease. Offers a long sanguine detail through the finish. Best from 2022 through 2040. 8,871 cases made. ~95WS
Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2015 Malescot St. Exupery is scented of chocolate-covered cherries, cassis and red plums with touches of earth and bay leaves. Medium to full-bodied with ripe, grainy tannins and plenty of expressive fruit, it finishes long and pure. ~94+WA
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