Phelan Segur is situated on same slopes in Saint Estephe as closest neighbours, Montrose and Meyney. It's overlooking banks of Gironde river and therefore in a safe environment when white or black frost strikes. The mIcroclimate here is just very advantageous.
Phelan Segur was already a big estate in mid 19th century, thanks to Franc Phelan of Irish origin. It was he who built the imposing chateau. The name Phelan Segur was first introduced at the beginning of the 20th century. Before that the property was named Segur de Garamey.
Delon family, who already has owned Leoville Las Cases at that time, purchased the property in 1946. In 1985, they sold it to a Gardinier family The new owner begins to make a lot of modernisation of winemaking facilities. Because of herbicide contamination, they had to take 1983 vintage back from the market and wasn't allowed to release 1984 and 1985 vintages. 1986 was the first vintage produced by the new owner.
New technical director, Veronique Dausse, arrived in August 2010 just before harvest. Her arrival has resulted in Phelan Segur being more stable in quality and improving.
In 2017, Gardinier family sells Phelan Segur to a Belgian investor, Philippe van de Yvere.
Phelan Segur's vineyard covers 70 ha which is planted with 58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot, 1.5% Cabernet Franc and 1.5% Petit Verdot. The vineyard is divided into 4 blocks and some of these touches the ones of Montrose and Calon Segur. The soil here is of great quality, mostly gravels, mouldy, sandy and clay ones. Vines here are on average 40 years old. 50% of new oak is used for ageing.
Phelan Segur is only Cru Bourgeois but in several vintages since 2010 vintage, it challenges classified growths. Thanks to the large content of Merlot, it can be very aromatic, polished, elegant and fleshy, while Cabernet Sauvignon provides strong backbone, structure and concentration. Both grape varieties really compliment each other here!
In 2018, this property excelled itself and made a simply spectacular effort. I sincerely hope and pray there will be no filtration or just a very light one before bottling in 2020, so no great elements will be removed!
Veronique Dausse, manager of the property since august 2010. Pictured in April 2019
2019 (barrel sample) 95p
Tasted in June 2020. 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc, 14.5 alcohol. There is more Cabernet Sauvignon in 2019 compared to 2018 (40%) and less Merlot (52%). You can taste the change in the blend proportions immediately! Aromatic cherries and blackcurrants in big numbers! Deep and big scaled nose, strong backbone, high complexity and significant concentration. Large, very complex, big ripe tannins. A beast in ship clothes! Different than 2018, which was much more sheep clothes than the beast. Will it outperform 2018 vintage – I think it will!
2018 (barrel sample) 94p
Tasted three times - last time in September 2019. Consistent notes. Very powerful wine with a velvety texture, silky fruit and tannin, splendid complexity, splendid structure and long finish. Great effort for the vintage and probably the best wine from this property ever produced.
2017 (barrel sample) 92p
Tasted in April 2018. Meaty wine with fine acidity and ripe fruit. Well-balanced, complex and long finish. Splendid effort for the vintage.
2016 (barrel sample) 92-93p
Tasted in April 2017. Aromatic, delicious on the palate with tight structure and meaty finish. Some elegance. Well-made. This wine will for sure perform even better in the bottle.
2015 (barrel sample) 93p
Tasted twice - last time in April 2016. Consistent notes. 53% Cabernet Sauvignon + 47% Merlot, 13.5% alcohol. Very aromatic with significant aromas of blueberries and blackberries, well-knitted, splendidly balanced, sweet fruit, refined and complex with a long fruity aftertaste. Impressive.
Tasted twice - last time in April 2016. Consistent notes. Earthy, dark cherries, spicy, strong structure and backbone, fleshy and with a long finish. Well-balanced. This is a splendid wine.
Tasted in April 2016. Tasted delicious, round, very fruity, sappy with fine structure and length. A real crowd-pleaser and perfect restaurant wine!
Tasted twice - last time in April 2016. Consistent notes. Splendid acidity, fine structure and long finish. Reminiscent of 2014 but less complexity and concentration.
Tasted in April 2016. Fat fruit and tannin, both perfectly ripe, great complexity and depth. Strong backbone but also finesse and elegance. This vintage marked the arrival of a new manager of Phelan Segur, Veronique Dausse.
Tasted twice - last time in April 2012. Consistent notes. Chocolate and black cherries, splendidly structured and complex. Tannin wasn't as fat and grained as in 2010, but 2009 was a little longer on the palate. Excellent effort as well.
Tasted twice - last time in April 2012. Consistent notes. Very traditional and a bit rustic wine here in a cool vintage. Very nice structure and length. Needs time to soften.
Tasted twice - last time in April 2012. Consistent notes. Difficult vintage but the wine here was already charming people a lot with attractive and tasty fruit. Already drinkable.
Tasted twice - last time in April 2012. Consistent notes. Tight and a bit edgy, some dryness in fruit and tannin. Harvested too late?
Tasted twice - last time in April 2012. Consistent notes. Aromatic, well-knitted, perfectly ripe dark berries and ripe tannin, splendid complexity, strong backbone and structure. Long finish.
Tasted in September 2007. Very aromatic, fine structure and depth, complex, concentrated and well-balanced. Tannin isn't dominating here and this wine is really well-made.
Tasted in August 2006. Delicious, hugely aromatic and well-structured wine with a robust approach, strong backbone and firm finish.
Tasted in August 2005. Ripe fruit, elegant, nice structure with tasty fruit. Round and charming. It's quite pleasant right now.
Tasted in May 2012. This 22 years old wine from highly heralded vintage was a real heartbreaker with its aromatic, attractive and elegant approach, finesse and soft fruity finish. Delicious stuff.