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Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere 2012

Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

Blend: 50% Merlot, 50% Cabernet Franc

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 93
Wine Spectator
This has a lovely core of pure, fresh, well-defined boysenberry, blackberry and plum fruit, which glides beautifully over polished alder and vanilla notes while hints of violet and anise fill in on the finish. A lovely whiff of tobacco chimes in at the very end. This should be fun to cellar. A big wine that goes with the flow of the vintage and doesn't try to overdo it. Best from 2018 through 2027.
JS 93
James Suckling
Beautiful nose of strawberries, cherries and cedar notes. Shaved chocolate, too. Full body, ultra-fine tannins and a juicy and fruity finish. Persistent on the palate. Drink from 2017.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Proprietor Comtes von Neipperg has done an incredible job with this estate, turning things around from a vegetal, diluted and undernourished wine in the 1970s and 1980s to something that has gotten stronger and strong ever since 1988. The dense ruby/purple 2012 offers pure blackcurrant and black cherry fruit along with some notes of Christmas spices and earth. It is full-bodied and opulent, with light tannins in the finish. This is a beauty of impeccable balance, great purity and texture. Kudos to von Neipperg, who rarely ever seems to make a mistake. Anticipated maturity: now-2030. The final blend tips the scales at 13.5% from an equal-part blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
JD 93
Jeb Dunnuck
The 2012 Canon-la-Gaffeliere is an elegant, floral, and spice-driven Saint-Emilion offering full-bodied richness, fine, silky tannin and impeccable balance. It’s one of the more classic, elegant 2012s that’s going to benefit from another few years of cellaring and have two decades of overall longevity.
WE 92
Wine Enthusiast
This tannic wine is very dry and extracted. It doesn't have the weight to sustain this intense dryness, however, suggesting potential for a fine fruitiness with age. Dark on the palate, it finishes quite dry.
Barrel Sample: 90-92
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Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere

Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere

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Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere, St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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Located on the famous slope (and the foot of the slope) south of the medieval village of Saint-Emilion, Château Canon La Gaffelière has belonged to the Counts von Neipperg since 1971. Representing some eight centuries of family winegrowing tradition, Count Stephan von Neipperg has succeeded in placing Château Canon La Gaffelière among the top Grands Crus Classés of Saint-Emilion thanks to a winegrowing philosophy that gives priority not only to quality, but also respect for the environment.

Château Canon La Gaffelière is located on the outskirts of the medieval town of Saint-Emilion, at the southern foot of the slope. The 19.5 hectare (48 acres) vineyard has a complex, outstanding terroir of clay-limestone and clay-sand soil. The topsoil is primarily sandy, increasingly so as one moves away from the slope. The unusual proportion of grape varieties (55% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon) at Canon-La-Gaffelière is perfectly suited to the soil.

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St-Émilion

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Marked by its historic fortified village—perhaps the prettiest in all of Bordeaux, the St-Émilion appellation, along with its neighboring village of Pomerol, are leaders in quality on the Right Bank of Bordeaux. These Merlot-dominant red wines (complemented by various amounts of Cabernet Franc and/or Cabernet Sauvignon) remain some of the most admired and collected wines of the world.

St-Émilion has the longest history in wine production in Bordeaux—longer than the Left Bank—dating back to an 8th century monk named Saint Émilion who became a hermit in one of the many limestone caves scattered throughout the area.

Today St-Émilion is made up of hundreds of independent farmers dedicated to the same thing: growing Merlot and Cabernet Franc (and tiny amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon). While always roughly the same blend, the wines of St-Émilion vary considerably depending on the soil upon which they are grown—and the soils do vary considerably throughout the region.

The chateaux with the highest classification (Premier Grand Cru Classés) are on gravel-rich soils or steep, clay-limestone hillsides. There are only four given the highest rank, called Premier Grand Cru Classés A (Chateau Cheval Blanc, Ausone, Angélus, Pavie) and 14 are Premier Grand Cru Classés B. Much of the rest of the vineyards in the appellation are on flatter land where the soils are a mix of gravel, sand and alluvial matter.

Great wines from St-Émilion will be deep in color, and might have characteristics of blackberry liqueur, black raspberry, licorice, chocolate, grilled meat, earth or truffles. They will be bold, layered and lush.

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Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

CVY4061B2_2012 Item# 214511