Chateau Brown Pessac-Leognan Blanc 2008
Bordeaux White Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
#94 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2011
Wine Spectator - "This muscular white has a firm backbone of acidity that supports fleshy flavors of melon, mango, chamomile and toast. Balanced and harmonious, with ample reserves to age well. Two-thirds Sauvignon Blanc and one-third Sémillon. Drink now through 2020. 750 cases made."
Chateau Brown Winery
Chateau Brown, as its name suggests, bears testimony to the close links that have always existed between the Bordeaux region and the Anglo-Saxons. Founded in the late Middle Ages when Aquitaine belonged to England, Chateau Brown owes its name to the wealthy Scottish wine trader John Lewis Brown, who settled in Bordeaux in the late 18th century. An enthusiast of wines and art, this epicurean passed on not only his name but also his passions to his grandson, the animal painter John Lewis Brown.
The owners came and went at Chateau Brown over the centuries and the estate alternated between glory and neglect. It was not until the late 20th century that the estate was fully restored to its former eminent position under the impulse of Bernard Barthe, the master of the chateau for the last decade.
In December 2004, he decided to place his “life’s work” in the hands of a famous dynasty of wine traders who had been at the forefront of winegrowing in Bordeaux since 1897: the Mau family, in partnership with the Dutch Dirkzwager family. When you discover the gently-sloping vineyard, its thousand-year-old history and its majestic building in which the finest paintings by J. L. Brown are still kept, you can understand the passion that Château Brown arouses in Jean-Christophe Mau, the current manager. He devotes himself fully to the estate, backed up by the experience of his elders and his convictions as a young winegrower, but also borne by a deep fascination for this place with its exceptional past. View all Chateau Brown Wines
About Pessac-LeognanView a map of Pessac-Leognan wineries (PEH-sak lay-ohn-yawn)
One of the top appellations within Graves, Pessac-Léognan is home to the only Graves chateau listed as a first growth in the 1855 Médoc classification – Chateau Haut-Brion. In fact, praise for the chateau dates back to the days of Thomas Jefferson, when, upon visiting the chateau in 1787, he bought 125 bottles for his cellar in Virginia.
The majority of wines made here are red, but Pessac-Léognan is also known for producing some of the finest dry white wines of Bordeaux. Many of the top chateau, like Chateau Haut Brion and Chateau Mission Haut Brion, produce top-quality whites alongside their red. Other Chateaux, like Smith Haut Lafite and Carbonnieux, are better known for their distinguished white wines than reds. Both colors of wine from this region have the specific tastes of the gravelly soil where it's grown.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.