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Chateau Carbonnieux 2012

Bordeaux Red Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

The Merlot in Chateau Carbonnieux gives the wine a fine and deep intense color while the Cabernet adds a full fruity character. The 2012 blending with a little Petit Verdot gave a vintage that is extremely pleasant and charming to drink when eating.
Blend: 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc

Critical Acclaim

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JS 92
James Suckling
Racy and refined with a perfumed and sweet fruit character. Full body, yet condensed and very silky texture. A really pretty wine from here.
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
There is a lot to like in this luscious, fruit forward offering where extraction was not overdone. The wine is nicely balanced with a style similar to a premier or grand cru Burgundy given its earthiness, floral, bay leaf and red and black fruit characteristics. Ripe and medium-bodied with excellent texture, cleanliness and overall equilibrium, it should drink well for 10-15 years.

Range: 89-91 Points

WS 91
Wine Spectator
This has polish and good drive, with a core of cherry preserve, currant paste and plum fruit that stretches out nicely over fine-grained, integrated tannins. Long spice-infused finish.

Range: 88-91 Points

WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
This wine is dry, full of tannins and dark fruits. It is weighty, structured and ready for the long term with its acidity, dry tannins, dense structure and intense black currant fruits. Drink this mineral-textured wine from 2020.
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Chateau Carbonnieux

Chateau Carbonnieux

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Chateau Carbonnieux, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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The history of Carbonnieux goes back a very long way, and records show that wine was made there at least as early as the 12th century. Benedictine monks from Sainte-Croix abbey in Bordeaux replanted and renovated the estate in the 18th century. They took advantage of the exceptionally pale, clear color of the white wine to label it as "Carbonnieux mineral water", which they then proceeded to ship to the sultan of Turkey.

Marc Perrin acquired and restored the château in 1956. His son, Antony, currently manages the estate. The gravelly soil at Carbonnieux is perfectly drained thanks to the Eau Blanche stream that carries away any excess water. The 85 hectares of vines are evenly divided between red and white wine varieties. The white wine is fermented and aged in barrel for 10 months. The red wine is aged for 15 to 18 months in barrel, depending on the quality and characteristics of the vintage.

Pessac-Leognan

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Recognized for its superior reds as well as whites, Pessac-Léognan on the Left Bank claims classified growths for both—making it quite unique in comparison to its neighboring Médoc properties.

Pessac’s Chateau Haut-Brion, the only first growth located outside of the Médoc, is said to have been the first to conceptualize fine red wine in Bordeaux back in the late 1600s. The estate, along with its high-esteemed neighbors, La Mission Haut-Brion, Les Carmes Haut-Brion, Pique-Caillou and Chateau Pape-Clément are today all but enveloped by the city of Bordeaux. The rest of the vineyards of Pessac-Léognan are in clearings of heavily forested area or abutting dense suburbs.

Arid sand and gravel on top of clay and limestone make the area unique and conducive to growing Sémillon and Sauvignon blanc as well as the grapes in the usual Left Bank red recipe: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and miniscule percentages of Petit Verdot and Malbec.

The best reds will show great force and finesse with inky blue and black fruit, mushroom, forest, tobacco, iodine and a smooth and intriguing texture.

Its best whites show complexity, longevity and no lack of exotic twists on citrus, tropical and stone fruit with pronounced floral and spice characteristics.

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.

WBX6358325_2012 Item# 134315