"The 2015 Le Dôme, 80% Cabernet Franc and 20% Merlot, shows good energy and saline tension that is such a signature of Cabernet Franc-based wines. At the same time, there is plenty of the signature Maltus richness and intensity here. Le Dôme is the most distinctive wine in the range today."
89-92 points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous
"Very suave and attractively cast aromas of violets, blueberries, plums and dark chocolate with spicy, cedary notes and slate-like nuances. The palate’s velvety, fleshy and smooth with dark berries, chocolate and roasted-coffee flavours set in ribbon-like, silky tannins. Try from 2022."
95 points, James Suckling.
"The 2015 Le Dôme is a blend of 80% Cabernet Franc and 20% Merlot picked on October 2 and 6. It has a clean and precise bouquet, tightly wound at first, gently warming up, developing more delineation and focus. This might be a more understated Le Dôme compared to recent years, but you might argue more sophisticated. The palate is medium-bodied with impressive density, a vein of dark chocolate on the entry that is rapidly overtaken by layers of lightly spiced black fruit. The finish is tightly wound at the moment, but it will open by the time of bottling. What I like here is the fineness of the tannin, something not always exuded by Mathus' top cuvée. It simply expresses the joys of Cabernet Franc and it should age nicely over the next 5-20 years."
94-96 points, Neal Martin, eRobertParker.com
"A juicy red with walnut, berry and chocolate aromas and flavours Full and savoury. Loads of fruit and chewy tannins."
94-95 points, James Suckling, jamessuckling.com
St.-Émilion is the star of Bordeaux’s Right Bank, north of the Dordogne River. The rich red wines produced in St.-Émilion, based on Merlot and Cabernet Franc, are less tannic and generally more fruit-driven in flavour than the Cabernet-based wines of Left Bank. Merlot thrives on the plateaus high above the Dordogne, where the soil is filled with sand and clay, a perfect medium for creating opulent, fruit-forward wines. With a typically savoury character, St.-Émilion wines are sometimes called the “Burgundies of Bordeaux.” These refined reds, with loads of finesse, are elegant companions to beef, chicken, pork and duck.
The wines of St.-Émilion were not included in the famous 1855 classification of Bordeaux, which ranked wines of the Left Bank. In 1955, St.-Émilion published its own classification, based on soil analysis, wine quality and reputation of the properties. Unlike the 1855 classification, St.-Emilion’s system requires properties to continuously prove themselves. The list is revised regularly, most recently in 2012. There are two tiers within the classification, Premier Grand Cru Classé and Grand Cru Classé. There are currently just 18 Premier Grand Cru properties and 64 Grand Cru Classé properties.
The St.-Émilion appellation is home to hundreds of individual producers, enhancing the variety of wines made there. Many of the properties remain small, family-run enterprises, unlike the large châteaux of the Left Bank. The area is also the base of France’s controversial micro-châteaux or garagiste wine movement; these innovative winemakers operate outside the traditional classification system, making very high quality (and very expensive) highly extracted wines.