Les Asteries (Futures Pre-sale) 2010
Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Emilion, Bordeaux, France
This Single Vineyard wine is made from a single hectare on 'Asteries' (rock limestone) soil between Chateau Fonroque and Clos Fourtet. The vines survived the frost of 1956 and are up to eighty years old. 'Panacheed' in the old style (Merlot interspersed with Cabernet Franc to ensure easy blending in the days before pumps) they are cropped down to four bunches per vine to reflect the 'terroir' of the parcel.
Very focused with the sophistication that could only come from 80-year old vines. Wonderful.
Blend: 83% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc
International Wine Cellar - "Medium dark ruby. Fruity, pure aromas of raspberry, graphite, white pepper and violet. At once rich and linear, offering a wonderfully vibrant expression of raspberry, red cherry and graphite. The long, sweet finish shows a steely, peppery quality. This wine comes from 80-year-old vines situated on very thin clay over hard limestone, which survived the frost of 1956. I like this wine's purity and the fact that the cabernet franc, even though compromising only a small part of the blend, makes its presence felt.
Wine Spectator - "Very lively, with lots of enticing blueberry, violet and plum aromas and flavors. There's nice focused grip on the back end, with ample length. Very solid.
Barrel Sample: 91-94"
The Wine Advocate - "Another tiny production offering from proprietor Jonathan Maltus, this blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc is produced from a single vineyard situated near La Carre. The 2010 reveals notes of powdered rock as well as red and black fruits, moderately high tannin, good acidity and a fresh, lively, medium to full-bodied personality. Although slightly austere, it has not fleshed out from its late malolactic, but it looks very impressive. Give it 2-4 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 15+ years.
Wine Enthusiast - "This is rounded, ripe, a densely tannic mineral wine, very intense. It is tense, structured, firm, promising long aging.
Barrel Sample: 92-94 "
James Suckling - "Mineral and blackberry with a fresh herb note. Full and velvety."
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Les Asteries Winery
This Single Vineyard wine is made from a single hectare on 'Astéries' (rock limestone) soil between Château Fonroque and Clos Fourtet. The vines survived the frost of 1956 and are up to eighty years old. 'Panachéed' in the old style (Merlot interspersed with Cabernet Franc to ensure easy blending in the days before pumps) they are cropped down to four bunches per vine to reflect the 'terroir' of the parcel.
Unlike most of the wines of the Château, Les Astéries exhibits a strain of minerality that emphasises the rock like sub-soil. The wine is pure vineyard rather than a 'winemaker's' wine. Huge colour, high extraction of black fruits, totally hedonistic palate but almost Saint-Estèphe grip on the finish, fresh and very, very long. View all Les Asteries Wines
About St-EmilionView a map of St-Emilion wineries (saint eh-meel-YOHN)
A region named after the charming, quaint historical town in Bordeaux, St-Émilion is situated on the right bank of Bordeaux. It's grapes of choice are Merlot and Cabernet Franc (called Bouchet on the right bank). The region has its own classification system, updated and revised every few years. Two of the hottest chateaux of the area (and the only Premier Grand Cru Classé A) are Chateau Ausone and Chateau Cheval Blanc.
St.-Émilion produces the most wine on the right bank of Bordeaux. As most of its wine is based primarily on Merlot, St-Emilion wines are described as having finesse and elegance. The best wine of the region can last upward of 10-20 years, like a good left-banker, but many find that the wines here matuer earlier than those based on Cabernet Sauvignon. The soils in the area differ greatly, from gravel to limestone to clay and sand. As a result, the wines of this region are diverse. Quality wines display silky tannins and ripe, soft fruit – the higher quality wine showing full-bodied texture and layers of complexity.
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.