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Chateau d'Aiguilhe (Futures Pre-Sale) 2016

Bordeaux Red Blends from Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux, France
  • WS94
  • JS92
  • RP92
  • D91
0% ABV
  • WS93
  • JD93
  • JS90
  • V90
  • WS92
  • WE92
  • JD92
  • D91
  • V90
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Winemaker Notes

Blend: 85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 94
Wine Spectator
Well-formed and integrated already, with a fleshy edge and good energy throughout. Features plum, anise and blackberry fruit, accented by a streak of bramble. A tasty wine in the making.
Barrel Sample: 91-94 Points
JS 92
James Suckling
Dense and silky with a polished and refined tannin backbone. Medium body, beautiful fruit and a soft-textured finish.
Barrel Sample: 91-92 Points
RP 92
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2016 Chateau d'Aiguilhe is a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc picked from 30 September until 18 October, matured in 30% new oak. It has a warm and sensual bouquet: small macerated black cherries, blueberry and sloes, a light floral tincture emerging with time. This has a little more strictness compared to the 2015 last year. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin and good body. Sappy black fruit, a touch of spice towards the finish, and you have yourself a very fine Côtes de Castillon.
Barrel Sample: 90-92 Points
D 91
Decanter
This takes its time to open in the glass, slowly revealing its flavours one at a time, starting with tight, dark-fleshed brambly fruits and chocolate. Polished, glossy and vibrant.
Barrel Sample
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Chateau d'Aiguilhe

Château d'Aiguilhe

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Château d'Aiguilhe, Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux, France
Stephan von Neipperg's Saint-Emilion estates have received praise from around the world for their excellent quality. von Neipperg has also decided to leave his mark on Château d'Aiguilhe, one of the finest vineyards in the Côtes de Castillon. Château d'Aiguilhe has 65 hectares, of which 42 are devoted to producing wine. The vineyards are planted on the upper part of the slopes and thus have excellent natural drainage and sun exposure.

The estate is expertly managed by Jean-Patrick Meyrignac. It benefits from the tried and tested winegrowing methods used by Stephan von Neipperg at his Saint-Emilion estates: letting the terroir express itself fully, low yields and a very flexible approach to winemaking.

Cotes de Castillon

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Though the region is larger than many of its Right Bank neighbors, it is one that consistently produces high quality, well-valued red wines. In fact, Cotes de Castillon can almost be considered a geographical eastern extension of St. Emilion, producing similarly-fashioned reds based on Merlot.

Vineyards in the region’s clay, limestone and sandstone soils produce sturdy red wines. On alluvial terraces, in vineyards closer to the Dordogne River, wines tend to be more supple and fruity. In either case, a great Cotes de Castillon red will be bursting with raspberry, plum and blueberry, have an enticing bouquet of dried flowers and a finish that is plush and opulent.

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/or 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 can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can 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, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

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