96pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the 2016 Fonplegade opens with a very savory nose of smoked meats, tapenade, sautéed herbs and beef drippings over a core of plum preserves, chocolate-covered cherries and cedar chest plus wafts of violets and cigars. Medium to full-bodied, the palate possesses both intensity and elegance, with the black fruit layers superbly framed by firm, fine-grained tannins and wonderful freshness, finishing long and mineral laced.
95pts James Suckling
A very suave, modern-style St.-Emilion with fine blackberry aromas and some bitter chocolate. Excellent balance of fruit, generous velvety tannins and lively acidity on the rich palate. Long, clean and supple finish. Drink or hold.
94pts Jeb Dunnuck
Matching the blockbuster 2015 in quality, the 2016 Château Fonplégade is a ripe, fleshy, sexy wine that's loaded with notions of jammy blackberry, cassis, dried earth, and spice. With full-bodied richness, plenty of mid-palate depth, and a layered, fruit-forward style, it nevertheless has solid underlying structure and length, all promising a solid evolution. I’d be happy to drink bottles any time over the coming two decades or more.
Just from the nose you can tell this is a brilliant wine. You get smoky coffee notes that are balanced by freshness and a savoury edge to the juicy fruit. The vineyard is mid-slope, with some touches of sand which often helps St-Emilion to taste a little juicier in the early years, but there's no doubting the quality and enjoyment here. Organic winemaking.
92pts Wine Spectator
Delightfully fruit-filled, with warm, creamy layers of cassis, raspberry puree and plum reduction gliding through atop a velvety structure. Anise and fruitcake notes take hold on the finish, adding range and extra detail. A bit forward in style, but an echo of chalky minerality keeps this honest. Drink now through 2033.
91pts Wine Enthusiast
This densely concentrated wine is dark and serious, with powerful tannins. It has a bitter edge and black chocolate flavors along with dark plum-skin flavor. The structure will stand this big wine in good stead as it ages.
With an impeccable balance between fruit, complexity and aromatic length, this wine is characterized by a sophisticated minerality, consistent from year to year, with soft and supple tannins and a velvety texture. It is made from the estate's oldest vines, meticulously hand-farmed using organic and biodynamic practices to bring out the finest quality in each cluster. Predominantly Merlot, the blend includes just enough Cabernet Franc to imbue the wine with an elegant tannic structure.
Château Fonplégade is aged 16-20 months in 60% new French oak barrels, 30% in 1-year-old French oak barrels and 10% in egg-shaped concrete vessels.
Dark ruby coulor with deep purple. Ample attack, fresh and silky on the nose. Powerful and round tannins enhanced by a mineral final with salty notes. Floral notes of violets enhanced by blueberry, strawberry, blackcurrant and fresh tobacco.
Blend: 90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc