There’ll be no shortage of hype about Bordeaux 2014 – ‘an Indian summer of historic proportions’ and all that. Whilst we won’t be offering our 2014 red en primeur, our two whites and our rosé have just been bottled and are ready to go. Here’s a run-down of the new wines on offer this Spring, including a new red and our Sauternes from the 2011 vintage. (2011? Blimey, time flies). You can order them here for delivery in the UK, or here for collection from Calais.
Château Bauduc Sauvignon Blanc 2014
2014 has turned out to be a very good vintage, with good weather for the flowering in June, a fairly cool summer and then a lovely September both before and during the harvest. We made this crisp, dry white from the blocks of Sauvignon Blanc that surround the chateau. An upmarket house wine that is grassy, zingy, refreshing and versatile, and bottled with a Stelvin+ screwcap.
The 2014 has just been selected by Restaurant Gordon Ramsay once again as the house white at his eponymous three Michelin star establishment in London, and we’ll soon be going to see Rick Stein for the annual, slightly nervy ’man from Del Monte’ moment. (Gordon leaves it to his head sommeliers and wine buyer, in truth, but Rick still likes to keep his oar in at The Seafood in Padstow.)
Château Bauduc Rosé 2014
Dry and uber-pale like a rosé from Provence but, unlike the pink from Peter Mayle country, this was made from the juice of Merlot (two thirds) and Cabernet Sauvignon (one third). We select the parcels of red on the estate that we want to use for the rosé, and then harvest them slightly earlier than for our rouge. That way the rosé has the acidity and the freshness we’re looking for and isn’t too heavy or high in alcohol.
The wine is made from just the ’free-run’ juice, so only the slightest colour is drawn from the dark skins into the pale extract before we cool-ferment it. A wine for the summer, of course, although we drink it all year round with the occasional Thai green curry and other spicy dishes. Stelvin+ screwcap.
You can order the wine direct from us for UK delivery.
Les Trois Hectares blanc 2014
Longstanding customers will know by now that this dry white comes from a single, 7 acre block of Sémillon vines which was planted in 1947. Not old vines, mind, just comfortably middle aged. In fact, back in the day they weren’t too accurate with the precise varieties they planted, and we reckon now that around 20% of the vineyard is, in fact, Sauvignon Blanc. We now call this a ’field blend’ in that the assemblage is created in the vineyard.
The yield from these mature vines is consistently low, so there’s not much of it. We’re more likely to drink this with food than on its own but this could just be a habit. Victoria Moore of the Telegraph rather astutely referred to the wine as ’meadowy’.
Available for UK delivery here.
Les Trois Hectares rouge 2011
Les Trois Hectares 2011 is an artisanal affair. It was made from vines with fewer bunches for greater concentration and harvested entirely by hand. It’s mostly Merlot with a healthy dollop of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend, and was aged in small French oak barrels. This is a wine that can be drunk now although it will continue to improve in bottle. There’s no rush, in line with many really good red Bordeaux from this vintage.
Decant if you can to give this fairly powerful wine a chance to open up. We’ll be posting the story and plenty of pictures on our blog shortly.
Order for UK delivery here.
And a wine that we introduced last Autumn that you should seriously consider.
Bauduc Sauternes 2011
Sauternes has to come from the designated region on the other side of the Garonne from us, so we worked with a fifth-generation grower there and bottled the wine at Bauduc.
2011 was a terrific vintage when the celebrated ‘noble rot’ took hold, shrivelling the skins of the grapes and concentrating the natural sweetness of the juice. The grapes were hand picked in three separate sweeps from 2 hectares (5 acres) of low-yielding, 60 year-old Sémillon vines that are sandwiched between the vineyards of two prestigious chateaux.
Served by the glass and in 50cl bottles at Rick Stein’s Seafood Restaurant, Gordon Ramsay and Hotel du Vin. The wine can be ordered here.