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Decanter   93

There's very little of this wine in 2017 due to the frost. Full credit to Fleur Cardinale for what they have achieved here, producing just eight barrels from an unusual blend and using only first generation fruit. This is full of energy and extremely dark-fruited in expression, showing damson and black cherries alongside softly smoked and grilled almond notes. It has great tension, poise and minerality, and I love it, even if it remains an unusual creation and not typical of their usual style. It will eventually be bottled in just 1,000 magnums.

James Suckling   91-92

A fresh and bright red with plum and currant character. Medium-bodied, tight and focused. On it. Only 1,000 mags made.

Wine Advocate   92-94

Fleur Cardinale was hit very hard by the frost—nearly all the vineyards were wiped out. Potential production for 2017 is only around 1,000 magnums. The tentative blend of the 2017 Fleur Cardinale is 45% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Franc and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. Very deep purple-black in color, it has a nose of baked blackberries, black cherries and dried mulberries with touches of underbrush, truffles and Chinese five spice. The palate is medium to full-bodied, velvety and packed with black fruits, finishing long and spicy.

Vinous   91-93

The 2017 Fleur Cardinale, which was 50% affected by frost, has a flamboyant bouquet that is fortunately well defined and shows a little more composure than past vintages that I often felt were over-egged. This shows more linearity and focus. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy black fruit, supple tannin, judicious touches of white pepper and Asian spice that enliven the sustained finish whilst all the time retaining a sense of freshness and drinkability. Hopefully a prudent barrel maturation will ensure this turns into a fine Saint-Émilion.

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