Among all the famed chateaux in St-Emilion, I believe Ch. Figeac is the one that has the lowest price tag.  Take vintage 2007 as an example, Cheval-Blanc is selling at about HK$3,000 a bottle, Ausone about HK$4,000, Angelus about HK$2,000, Pavie about HK$1,500.  How about Figeac?  It is just about $800. Why is Ch. Figeac selling much cheaper than others?  I believe this is partly because of the low score given by Parker.

If you look at the following table, you will notice that from 1994 to 2008, there were only four vintages that Parker gave Figeac a score of over 90.  Not only that, 1997 Figeac got a super low score of 76.  What’s even more, there are many vintages that Parker even didn’t give a score!  Like this bottle of 2007 Ch. Figeac, there is no score from Parker.

2008 81
2006 90  Early
2005 90  Early
2004  86?  Mature
2003 88  Mature
2002 88  Mature
2001 89  Mature
2000 85
1999 89  Late
1998 90  Mature
1997 76  Old
1996 82  Old
1995 90  Late
1994 84  Old
1993 79  Old

It is no secret that Parker generally prefers modern style bigger wine.   Unfortunately (or fortunately to us) is that the wine style of Ch. Figeac is just opposite of what Parker generally prefer.  Ch. Figeac is famed for its superb elegance and feminine style of wine.  As a matter of fact, the terrior of Ch. Figeac is among the best in the whole of St-Emilion.  With soil mainly of gravel, Ch. Figeac planted quite a substantial amount of Cabernet Sauvignon (35%) and Cabernet Franc (35%).  Merlot only account for 30%.  A wine that is high in cabernet is generally not as pleasing in its youth when comparing to other wines that have a high proportion of Merlot.  Maybe also because of this reason, Ch. Figeac almost never score high in St-Emilion blind tasting.

This bottle of 2007 Ch. Figeac reflects wine style of Ch. Figeac well.  Elegant and very restrained nose. Not very expressive.  Need time and patience to analyse its aromas.  Mixed bags of black and red fruits, chocolate, cigar, earth, spices, vanilla and black tea.  Tannins are abundant but very fine.  Although it didn’t have a long length, this is a wine that has very good character and depth.  I would not say this is a very high scoring St-Emilion but I’m very happy with it.  Maybe Parker do not like the wine style of Ch. Figeac but I like it!

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