Chateau Belgrave Haut-Medoc 2015 - 750ml
93 Points Wine Enthusiast
Still firm and structured, this wine is dark and solid while still having a line of freshness and good acidity. Juicy black currants and elegant tannins are still developing, giving the possibility of a rich, generous wine from 2023.
Included as a 5th growth in the 1855 classification thanks to the quality of its deep gravel soil, Chateau Belgrave has been managed by the negociant firm of Dourthe since 1979. An attractive 18th century hunting lodge surrounded by sixty hectares of vines in a single block, Belgrave is located in the commune of Saint-Laurent, separated from the Saint-Julien appellation only by a small stream.
Starting in 1990, they changed their farming techniques for Chateau Belgrave, moving closer to a cleaner form of vineyard management with the elimination of all chemical fertilizers and limiting the use of pesticides, along with harvesting riper fruits and seeking lower yields. In 1993, a major renovation of the wine making facilities and cellars took place.
The terroir is deep gravel with clay, sand and limestone deposits in the soils. The vineyard is inland, on two sloping hillsides, next to Chateau Lagrange in St. Julien. At its peak, the elevations rise to 26 meters.
The vineyard is planted to a vine density that ranges from 6,500 vines per hectare up to 10,000 vines per hectare, depending on the parcel.The vineyard is in one large, single block of vines, which are contiguous to the chateau.
The wine of Chateau Belgrave is vinified in a combination of temperature controlled vats of stainless steel and wood vats. This breaks down to 33 stainless steel tanks and 6 oak vats. The wine of Chateau Belgrave is aged in 40% to 60% new, French oak barrels, depending on the character and style of the vintage. Chateau Belgrave is consulted by Michel Rolland.
Cuvaisons were long, lasting almost 30 days, alternating cap-punching and pumping over to keep the grapes in healthy condition to complete extractions. Transferred to barrel at the end of January, the wines show magnificent structure and are elegant and concentrated. At Château Belgrave, 2015 will sit alongside the very best vintages.
One of the most—if not the most—famous red wine regions of the world, the Medoc reaches from the city of Bordeaux northwest along the left bank of the Gironde River almost all the way to the Atlantic. Its vineyards climb along a band of flatlands, sandwiched between the coastal river marshes and the pine forests in the west. The entire region can only claim to be three to eight miles wide (at its widest), but it is about 50 miles long.
While the Medoc encompasses the Haut Medoc, and thus most of the classed-growth villages (Margaux, Moulis, Listrac, St-Julien, Pauillac and St. Estephe) it is really only those wines produced in the Bas-Medoc that use the Medoc appellation name. The ones farther down the river, and on marginally higher ground, are eligible to claim the Haut Medoc appellation, or their village or cru status.
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