Clos de l'Oratoire Saint-Emilion 2014

Special Price $49.95 Average US Price $53.00
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• Domaine: Clos de l'Oratoire
• Appellation: Saint-Emilion
• Classification: Grand Cru Classé
• Origin: Right Bank, Bordeaux, France

Clos de l’Oratoire is one of the happy few properties classified as a Saint-Émilion Grand Cru Classé.  This special, small estate on the Right Bank is also owned by the illustrious Von Neipperg family, and at under $100.00 is an excellent value that showcases the mineral-laced purity that Saint-Émillion terroir has to offer.  Clos de l’Oratoire is one of the younger estates in the Right Bank and was fairly obscure for many years.  Once the Von Neippergs got involved, Clos de l’Oratoire skyrocketed in terms of critical acclaim – a true triumph.

Those who are aware of the history of the region of Saint-Émilion are aware that many properties have roots that date back to the Roman era.  In that context, Clos de l’Oratoire has a fairly young history that goes to the 1800s.  It was once a part of the massive Peyreau estate, once the property was split into separate parts around the time of the first Saint-Émilion Classification the best terroirs were considered Clos de l’Oratoire.  With all that in mind, there wasn’t much attention surrounding the property – that is until Stephan von Neipperg got involved.  Many know Stephan von Neipperg because of his tremendous viticultural know-now and his other successful winemaking estates including Château Canon La Gaffeliere, La Mondotte, Château d’Aiguilhe and Château Peyreau.  The Von Neipperg family brings their extensive knowledge and use of biodynamic techniques to each vineyard they acquire, and the results really do speak for themselves.

Once Stephan Von Neipperg got ahold of this 13-hectare property, he made some important adjustments to the vineyard.  The property was initially planted with Cabernet Sauvignon, and he removed that for a varietal more suited to Right Bank terroir – Cabernet Franc.  The Von Neippergs implemented sustainable viticulture and biodynamics at the estate and continue to do so to this day.  No pesticides or herbicides are ever used in the vineyards.  The terroir at Clos de l’Oratoire is quite unique, and this very much influences the character of the wine produced here.  There is a mixture of clay, limestone, and Fronsac molasse.  At the bottom of the vineyard there is a mixture of clay and sandy soils.  The climate is slightly cooler here, which is great for the reigning varietal of this estate – Merlot.  The vines are 35 years old on average. The vines are all harvested by hand and vinified in temperature-controlled oak tanks.  Malolactic fermentation takes place in oak barrels with aging on fine lees.  The wine is then aged in a mixture of new and neutral French oak barrels depending on each vintage. 

Clos de l’Oratoire is a wine that can age for a couple of decades depending on the characteristics of the vintage.  In general, the wine can be enjoyed younger,  and it is recommended that one decants their bottle of Clos de l’Oratoire for one to two hours or more.  The wine is smooth with a mixture of a seductive finesse and opulence from the Merlot coupled with power and spice from Cabernet Franc.

Tasting Notes

"One of the von Neipperg estates, the 2012 Clos de l'Oratoire is an undeniable success story. Dense ruby/purple, with plenty of crème de cassis, roasted coffee, licorice and spice, full-bodied, opulent and sexy, it is a hedonist’s dream wine. Pure and long, it has a great finish and terrific palate presence. Drink it over the next 12-15 years. Yields were exceptionally small in 2012 – 25 hectoliters per hectare." - Robert Parker Jr., The Wine Advocate (4/29/2015, Issue 218), Ratings: 94, Drink: 2015-2030


More Information
LWIN 1008384
Stock Status In Stock
Appellation Saint-Emilion
Vintage 2014
Shipping Weight 3.000000
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Saint-Émilion is one of the most prestigious wine appellations in the Bordeaux region of France, renowned for its exceptional red wines and rich viticultural history. Located on the Right Bank of the Dordogne River, Saint-Émilion is a place of great beauty and a UNESCO World Heritage site, thanks to its remarkable blend of natural and cultural attributes. The Saint-Émilion appellation is characterized by a diverse terroir featuring a mix of limestone, clay, and sandy soils that provide the foundation for its distinctive wines. The unique microclimates and elevations within the appellation contribute to the variety of flavors and styles found in Saint-Émilion wines.

The primary grape varieties used in Saint-Émilion wines are Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon, with Merlot often dominating the blends. These grapes thrive in the region's favorable climate, moderated by the proximity of the Dordogne River and the buffering effects of the limestone plateau.

Saint-Émilion is famous for its unique wine classification system, which divides the vineyards into four tiers: Premier Grand Cru Classé A, Premier Grand Cru Classé B, Grand Cru Classé, and Grand Cru. This classification reflects the quality and prestige of the individual vineyards and châteaux within the appellation, with only a select few achieving the highest ranking of Premier Grand Cru Classé A. Until the re-classification in 2022, Château Cheval Blanc, Château Ausone, Château Angelus, and Château Pavie were the only four members of the Premier Grand Cru Classé A tier. Out of disagreement with the standard-setting governing body, Cheval Blanc and Ausone voluntarily dropped out. Angelus followed suit shortly after. With Pavie remaining the only member, Premier Grand Cru Classé A saw the addition of Château Figeac following a long-expected and well-deserved promotion.

Saint-Émilion wines are known for their finesse, complex aromas, and beautiful balance of fruit, tannins, and acidity. While they share some similarities with wines from the neighboring Pomerol appellation, they often have a slightly more structured and tannic character due to the higher proportion of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon in the blends. With age, these wines develop a velvety texture and reveal an array of flavors, including dark fruits, floral notes, and hints of earthiness.

Footnotes on Futures, Pre-Arrivals, and potential US Tariffs: 

1. As of June 15, 2021, the US and the EU agreed to suspend tariffs resulting from the Boeing-Airbus aircraft trade disputes. Accordingly, such import taxes are now suspended for the next five years.

2. Futures are expected to be available for delivery two years after the sales (e.g., the 2022 vintage, sold in 2023, will be delivered in 2025 mostly, or 2026 if the producer ages the wine longer).

3. Pre-Arrivals are items currently stored in our Bordeaux cellar or in transit from France to the US. It usually takes 1-6 months for Pre-Arrivals to become available for delivery, depending on the stage of the import process.

4. Regarding futures and pre-arrivals, we cannot guarantee specific delivery dates, which factors beyond our control may impact. However, we will notify you once your wine arrives in our cellar.

5. While a buyer of Bordeaux wine futures locks in an allocation of the specified items, the final delivery of the purchased items from France to the US may be impacted by intervening and unforeseeable events. Despite our due diligence, additional costs or delays may be caused by such intervening and unforeseen events and "an irresistible, superhuman cause, or by the act of public enemies of the state of California or the United States."  In such circumstances, if a buyer does not accept unforeseeable costs or delays, the sole and exclusive remedy is a cancellation of the futures order concerned and a refund of the original purchase price. We are NOT liable for any lost profits on a canceled order.

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