Chateau Valandraud (slightly torn label) 2005
Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
In 1989, Jean-Luc Thunevin and his wife Murielle Andraud acquire a small parcel of 0.6 hectare (1.48 acres) in the small Valley of Saint-Emilion between Pavie- Macquin and La Clotte. They produced and bottled their first vintage in 1991. Since then, they acquired other parcels and properties, in Saint-Sulpice de Faleyrens, Saint-Emilion and Saint-Etienne de Lisse.
Although the first wine critics called it a "garage wine," as Château Valandraud is not classified, it is considered by almost all wine professionals, Robert Parker included, as one of Bordeaux best wines.
Wine Spectator - "Dark ruby in color, with intense aromas of blackberry, mineral and dried lavender. Full-bodied, very dense and layered, with powerful tannins. This is big and very rich. A bodybuilder. Needs time. Best after 2016."
The Wine Advocate - "This is one of the most riveting examples of Valandraud Jean-Luc Thunevin has made over the last fifteen years. Thunevin and his partner, Murielle Andraud (who has much of the responsibility for their brilliant Margaux, Marojallia), exhibit impeccable attention to detail, resulting in an inky/blue/purple-colored 2005 Valandraud boasting a sweet nose of melted chocolate, licorice, graphite, espresso roast, and copious quantities of black cherries and blackberries. Pure, layered, and full-bodied, with gorgeous integration of acidity, tannin, alcohol, and wood, this stunning effort will be drinkable in 7-8 years, and should keep for three decades."
International Wine Cellar - "Saturated, deep ruby-red. Very complex aromas of plum, mocha, iron and minerals, lifted by a floral topnote. Wonderfully lush and smooth in the mouth, with fully ripe flavors of black raspberry, currant, licorice and mocha perfectly supported by ripe acidity. This boasts terrific balance and somehow manages to hide its 14.5% alcohol. Finishes impressively long, with big but thoroughly ripe tannins. The pH here is a very reasonable 3.6, notes Jean-Luc Thunevin. A splendid vintage for Valandraud, and likely to evolve slowly."
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Chateau Valandraud Winery
Château Valandraud is represented by the passion of a couple: Jean-Luc Thunevin and Murielle Andraud. Following the great success with the wine merchant business in Saint Emilion, they opened their own vineyard to produce their own wine.
In 1989, they bought a small parcel of 0.6 hectare (1.48 acres) located in a small valley near Saint Emilion between Pavie-Macquin and La Clotte. The origin of the wine name is as much geographic (Val: Vallon de Fongaban), as sentimental (Andraud: Murielle’s maiden name). Thus Château Valandraud was born.
Little by little, Jean-Luc and his wife purchased several other parcels of vines, and now, the domain represents a total surface of 10 hectares (24.71 acres), located in various areas of Saint Emilion. The diversity of soils and varietals permit the production of 6 different wines: Château Valandraud, Château Valandraud Casher, Virginie de Valandraud and the 3 de Valandraud (the second wine of Château Valandraud and Virginie de Valandraud), Blanc de Valandraud N° 1 and N° 2.
The final blending of the various parcels occurs in the month of March, following a blind tasting with the help of the world famous oenologist, Michel Rolland. View all Chateau Valandraud 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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