Chateau Labegorce (Futures Pre-sale) 2009
Bordeaux Red Blends from Margaux, Bordeaux, France
Wine Spectator - "This has dark fruit, but comes off as sleek, with cassis, plum eau de vie, blackberry paste and fig sauce notes all seamlessly held together by light toasty structure. Drink now through 2019. 14,000 cases made."
The Wine Advocate - "Showing vastly superior from bottle than it did from cask, Labegorce’s 2009 comes from a property that now includes the former estate Labegorce-Zede, which has been absorbed completely into this attractive vineyard just to the north of Chateau Margaux. They have excelled in this vintage. Dense ruby/purple, with notes of creosote, spring flowers, blueberry and blackberry fruit, this is a rich, medium to full-bodied wine with loads of character and depth. It is usually one of the better values of Bordeaux and it certainly stands out as a major sleeper of the vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2025. "
International Wine Cellar - "Dark ruby-red. Aromatic nose shows very ripe raspberry and red cherry scents complicated by mint and bay leaf. Fresh and clean, with juicy red fruit flavors of moderate intensity. Though initially suave and light on its feet, offering attractive sweetness and good overall balance, this finishes with slightly astringent tannins. Not the last word in complexity or aging potential, but a successful wine that should offer considerable early drinking appeal. Incidentally, Chateau Labegorce-Zede, under the same ownership as Labegorce, has now been fused with the latter property. There is now a new second wine called Zede de Labegorce.
Barrel Sample: 88-90 Points "
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Chateau Labegorce Winery
The origins of Labégorce lie in a large estate in the northern parts of the commune of Margaux which belonged to the Gorce (or Gorsse) family, perhaps as long ago as the 14th Century. The family were originally merchants, gradually climbing the social ladder in Bordeaux, assuming a more aristocratic standing in the community as they did so. They were still the proprietors here in the 18th Century, and documents from that time indicate that there was viticulture on the estate, the vineyards dotted between fields of wheat and pasture where cattle grazed. This was the situation at the time of the French Revolution, when like so many other estates in Bordeaux, Labégorce was divided and sold off, giving rise to three estates that still estate today. The first, that which concerns us here, is Chateau Labégorce and the second is Labégorce-Zédé, named for Pierre Zédé who acquired the estate in 1840. The third is the curiously named L'Abbé Gorsse de Gorsse, an estate long defunct as far as viticulture is concerned, but which is still clearly visible on the currently available maps of the commune. Following the break-up of the original estate the modern-day Labégorce first passed to a gentleman named Capelle, and subsequently changed hands a number of times, most recently coming into the ownership of Hubert Perrodo in 1989.
The Labégorce vineyards include three main plots, totalling 70 hectares in all, although only approximately 40 hectares are fully planted up. All three plots lie in the northernmost part of the commune. The largest plot, accounting for about two-thirds, lies just northeast of the fine chateau, which was constructed by the renowned architect Courcelles. There is a second plot around the chateau itself, accounting for about a quarter of all the Labégorce vines, while the smallest plot lies a little further north around the church in Soussans. The vines average 30 years of age, with the oldest vines, of which there are just four hectares, dating from between 1902 and 1950. More date from 1951 to 1985, whereas a quarter date from 1989 when extensive replanting took place. Vineyard practices involve careful use of chemicals, with no herbicide used at all, and yields are typically 50 hl/ha. Harvesting is by hand, and fermentation begins with a short, cold maceration followed by a temperature controlled process. Each parcel of vines, of which there are many, is vinified separately. The blend is 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Malolactic fermentation takes place in oak, 30% of which is new, where the wine spends up to fifteen months. It is fined using egg whites before bottling. The grand vin is Chateau Labégorce, and the second wine is Chateau Tour de Laroze. There is also a third wine, produced from a 4 hectare plot entitled to the Haut-Médoc appellation, called La Mouline de Labégorce View all Chateau Labegorce Wines
About MargauxView a map of Margaux wineries (mahr-GOH)
Soft, elegant, feminine… these are words often used to describe the wines of Margaux. The commune is different from its northern neighbors of the Haut-Médoc in both geography and style. Home to the name-sharing premier cru, Margaux lays a few marshlands south of St.-Julien.
Notable FactsAs in other Medoc appellations, Cabernet Sauvignon leads the blends of the region, but the percentage of Merlot in Margaux's wines is higher than other left bank communes. Add that to a diverse soil, lighter than that in the north, and you have a softer, more voluptuous wine. In the best years, wines of Margaux are delicate, elegant and refined - structured, but not austere. Chateau Margaux is, of course, a first growth and a highly esteemed and sought-after wine. Chateau Palmer, a third growth, is also well-respected and often commands prices equivalent of first growths. Look for Cru Bourgeois if you want to try the finesse of Margaux at a lower price.
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 & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.