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The 2021 Phélan Ségur is bright, punchy and full of character, with all the youthful vigor and fruitiness of a barrel sample. I very much like the energy here. There's less density than in the preceding years, but that is not a bad thing at all. Cedar, tobacco, sage and bright red berry fruit open nicely, all woven together by the aromatic intensity that is such a signature of the year. This is the second vintage that incorporates a touch of Petit Verdot, while the Cabernet is the highest it has ever been here. Readers will find a classy Phélan marked by a sense of strict classicism that is hugely attractive.
One of the absolute standouts for me this year. A dark and brooding nose with purity and concentration. The palate is finely textured with mineral-laced tannins that give grip in the mouth but letting the nuances of fruit and acidity play out in harmony. I love the intensity, it's rich but perfectly executed - elegant and finessed with balance and charm but above all a sense of energy and freshness that makes it one of the more memorable wines. Despite the challenges of the vintage, the fruit is ripe and dense and this gives no drop in the mid palate, sustaining pace and directness from start to finish. This is the first time to have such high percentages of both Cabernet Sauvignon (75%) and Petit Verdot (4%) in the blend. A gorgeous wine that has such promise. A surefire must buy and what should be great value too. Tasted twice and both times this was delicious with exceptional freshness and longevity.
93-94pts James Suckling
Plenty of cabernet character with currant and blackberry and some fresh-herb undertones. Medium body. Fine, firm tannins. Refined and together. Oyster shell and hints of spices such as cloves and white pepper. Tapenade. Typical for the appellation. 75% cabernet sauvignon, 4% petit verdot and 21% merlot.
92-93pts Wine Advocate
Unfurling in the glass with aromas of dark berries, plums and cherries mingled with notions of rose petals, pipe tobacco, sweet spices and loamy soil, the 2021 Phélan Ségur is medium to full-bodied, deep and layered, with impressive depth at the core, ripe tannins and lively acids, concluding with a long, saline finish. Concentrated and well-constructed, this is a serious wine with a bright future ahead of it. It's a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot and 4% Petit Verdot. Tasted five times, twice at the estate.
91-93pts Jeb Dunnuck
Tasted on numerous occasions, the 2021 Château Phélan Ségur (75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot and 4% Petit Verdot) makes the most of this challenging vintage and offers terrific purity in its cassis fruit as well toasted spice and violet notes. It has some background oak, medium-bodied richness, good mid-palate density, and outstanding length.