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One of my favorite bottles of Bordeaux. This 100% Cabernet Franc is made using zero sulfur, from vines that are tended under strict organic measures. The Dupuy family have been farming the same land since 1934, and have done an amazing job creating terrior-driven reds from their healthy grapes. This 2018 dark purple in the glass. The nose is beautifully plummy, with smashed raspberries, cherry leaves, graphite, all-spice, and violets. Flavors range from of blackberries, cranberries, pine, mint, and espresso. Graced by a dynamic level of clean acidity and formidable tannin. An absolute must for any lover of Cabernet Franc, especially if they enjoy examples from the Loire Valley. David Hatzopoulos
Chateau Micalet, with a few hectares in the commune of Lamarque was classified "Cru Artisan" by Feret in 1893. Acquired by the Fedieu family in 1972 the estate was enlarged slightly, never using herbicides, and with a new generation the conversion to organic agriculture was started in 2006. The estate now has 10 hectares on deep beds of gravel, planted at 8,000 pieds/hectare; the normal blend is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot - and 7% Petit Verdot, a grape the Fedieus feel is particularly important. The grapes are harvested by hand and undergo a 3 to 4 week fermentation, the wine ages in barrique, 30% new. The nose on the Haut Medoc has dark plummy fruit, with hints of vanilla and baking spice. Young leather notes and dark gravel tones as well. A little floral with dark violets and roses. The palate has lush black cherry. Graphite and iron on the tongue give an earthy glimmer. Medium acid and soft tannin, but great density at its core. Drink up! David Hatzopoulos
Catherine and Christian Grebaut decided to move to Saint Christophe des Bardes in the Libournais (Saint-Emilion) and take over a small hectare of vines planted in 1956, on the "cote nord" of the AOC, inherited from Catherine's family. "The idea was to get the best quality grapes to make it as easy as possible to vinify" and so they started "gardening" their plot, hoping to one day make a wine they could all be happy with. The project starts in 2015 when Catherine and Christian start getting their hands dirty, but still had to provide the local cooperative their fruit, tied to a contract. Right away they start converting the plot to organic viticulture. For the next four vintages, she not only converts her terroir to certified organic but makes one of the great wines of her appellation, following the principles of natural winemaking, naturally fermented, low sulfur the first year and zero sulfur the last. Being alone and going through some medical issues, Catherine decided to call it quits with the 2020 vintage.Rarely has Saint Emilion been so joyful and drinkable so young. Using a mix of stainless, barriques, and amphora, Catherine managed to strike a fine balance between seriousness, ageability, and immediate pleasure that is not often seen in the grand cru...
What a treat - a beautiful Haut-Médoc with zero added sulfur from certified organic and biodynamic farming! Pascale Choime and Laurence Alias of the Closeries des Moussis have a small parcel with sandy gravel soils (bordered by dense woods providing biodiversity) on the Plateau de Sénéjac, 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, where they produce this pure and vibrant Bordeaux. There is minimal extraction, aging is 16 months in old barrels. The 2020 is open and inviting, and clearly worthy of cellaring as well, with lovely silky red and black fruits, and great purity and length. An outstanding Haut-Medoc, unburdened by new oak and sulfur-dioxide. Quite delicious for current drinking or cellaring for ten - fifteen years. Highly recommended!
This is the special cuvee of old-vines from Chateau La Grolet. Aromatically extremely ripe and complex, it has cassis liqueur, fig, prune and cedary notes that continue on the palate that is ripe but balanced with good acidty and structure. Long-time biodynamic farming has given this young wine an earthy complexity and depth that is sadly lacking from today's cookie-cutter, oaky, over-extracted Bordeaux. The finish is long with mineral and acid notes balancing the ripe red and black fruits, cocoa and smoke. Lovely to drink now, this wine should be fabulous in 5 to 10 years or more. Congratulatons to our friend Jean-Luc Hubert and family for making the lovely organic wines of Chateau Peybonhomme and Chateau la Grolet!
Chateau La Grolet has been certified organic and Biodynamic since 2000. Double Guyot pruning, spontaneous winter grass cover. Soil tillage during the spring, every other row ploughed. Treatments combining small quantities of Bordeaux mixture with herbal teas such as horsetail or nettle. The blend is 70% Merlot, 15% Cabernet-Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet-Franc, 5% Malbec. The Hubert family's great farming creates this sensational value Bordeaux which is truly a subtle, complex and profound wine. When young, it is dominated by red and black fruit aromas, then as the years pass, cocoa and mild tobacco notes combine with hints of spice and earth. Can be drunk young but is also a very good wine for laying down, recommended cellaring time: 5 - 10 years.
Didier Michaud works 1.7 hectares in the Medoc with 30 to 100 year-old vines on limestone with thin soils of clay with sand and stones. He has old vines of Merlot Queue Rouge and massale selection Cabernet Sauvignon, farmed organically with just a little compost and shallow plowing. Vinification with wild yeasts, no extraction and no added sulfur (total SO2 less than 2 mg/L). This is one of the most "natural" and deliciously old-fashioned wines of Bordeaux. In the glass, the '19 is rich and plummy in color. The nose is heady, with awesome smells of mint, fresh garden soil, graphite, and pungent dark flowers. Flavors steer towards ripe forest fruits, like blueberry, blackberry, and cassis. Anise and herbs, with crunchy minerals, add flare to the wine's fruit. Great density, a velvety texture with engaging tannins and bright acidity. Definitely a bold Bordeaux, clocking in at 15% ABV, but so delicious, well structured and drinkable. Yum! David Hatzopoulos