Chateau d'Aiguilhe Cotes de Castillon 2003
Bordeaux Red Blends from Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux, France
|This large (120+ acres) vineyard planted on limestone and clay soils is composed of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc. Bottled unfined and unfiltered, the 2003 was produced from yields of 28 hectoliters per hectare. It exhibits a dense purple color as well as a big, sweet nose of scorched earth, blackberries, underbrush, cherries, and smoke. Layered, opulent, powerful, and rich, with its tannin character well-hidden by abundant fruit, it should drink well for 10-12 years. It is another example of this backwater appellation producing a wine that transcends its pedigree.
Château d'Aiguilhe Winery
Stephan von Neipperg's Saint-Emilion estates have received praise from around the world for their excellent quality. von Neipperg has also decided to leave his mark on Château d'Aiguilhe, one of the finest vineyards in the Côtes de Castillon.
Château d'Aiguilhe has 65 hectares, of which 42 are devoted to producing wine. The vineyards are planted on the upper part of the slopes and thus have excellent natural drainage and sun exposure.
The estate is expertly managed by Jean-Patrick Meyrignac. It benefits from the tried and tested winegrowing methods used by Stephan von Neipperg at his Saint-Emilion estates: letting the terroir express itself fully, low yields and a very flexible approach to winemaking.
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About Cotes de Castillon
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Cote de Castillon is located just east of St-Émilion and south of Fronsac. The region is Merlot-based like its surrounding neighbors and produces great value wines. Wines of Castillon may not have the depth and elegance of a Pomerol, but they are delicious & affordable, allowing consumers to enjoy the right-bank of Bordeaux and a friendly price. These wines also have the additional benefit of being approachable when young, though some producers are creating wines that will age well and improve with a few years in the bottle.
About France - Other regions
When 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.
Alcohol By Volume Guide
Most 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.