Country: France Region: Bordeaux Vintage: 2016
Category: Red Wine Color: Red
Producer: Château Mahon-Laville
"The 14-hectare Château Laville in Sauternes is Jean-Christophe Barbe's family property. A Professor of Oenology at Bordeaux University, he is mostly famous for his outstanding Sauternes, but also produces some stunning reds, albeit on a fairly small scale. Although the domaine is mainly planted with white grapes, Jean-Christophe has set aside a 1.3 hectare vineyard of red varieties, which is sold as 'Château Mahon-Laville'.
Thanks to the team of pickers that are constantly on hand at Château Laville (to perform the various passes through the vineyard required to make top Sauternes), Jean-Christophe is able to wait and pick the Merlot and Cabernet grapes when they are ripe (which can be an issue in this part of Bordeaux), rather than when he has pickers available. The 2016 Mahon-Laville Bordeaux Supérieur is 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and is aged for 12 months in oak. 'Les Graves de Mahon-Laville' comes from 40 year old vines grown on gravel soils in 2.5 hectares of vineyard that are classified as Graves. It is also a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and spends 15 months in barriques before bottling. "
Product Features: Sustainable;Vegan;Vegetarian
Winemaker: Jean-Christophe Barbe
Jean-Christophe's original 1.3 hectares of red grape varieties are located at Laville on a plot of land called Mahon, hence the name. Soils are predominantly clay and the average age of the vines are 15 years old. The wine is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, and it is startlingly good for a red Bordeaux at this price. The work that goes into it - leaf plucking to expose the fruit, crop thinning before veraison to lower yields and aid ripeness, hand picking, three weeks on skins followed by 12 months in vat - all add to this great value wine.
The grapes were hand-picked then spent three to four weeks on skins fermenting at 28°C-30°C. Malolactic fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at temperatures of 22°C followed by ageing for 12 months in wooden barrels.
Good colour, a classic nose and ripe, supple fruit on the palate with the sort of grip on the finish that reminds you that you are drinking a claret.
Food Suggestion: Serve with a grilled steak or game stew with lots of root vegetables.
Closure: Natural Cork ABV:13.5% Acidity [g/l]: 6.2