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Tour Saint Christophe 2016

  • JS96
  • RP94
  • JD94
  • WS91
750ML / 0% ABV
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4.6 14 Ratings
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4.6 14 Ratings
750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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JS 96
James Suckling
This has a rich and ripe dark-fruit nose with a wealth of stony attraction and a lighter, floral edge. The palate has a very rich core of deeply ripe, fleshy fruit, framed in cedary oak. Really impressive clarity and web-like tannins. Superb finish. Try from 2023.
RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2016 Tour Saint-Christophe is made up of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc. It was aged in 40% new, 40% one-year-old and 20% two-year-old oak for 18 months. Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, it sings of roses, chocolate-covered cherries, redcurrant jelly and cinnamon stick with touches of cigar box and forest floor. Big, full-bodied and richly fruited yet with great tension, it has a compellingly perfumed palate and gorgeous velvety texture with great persistence.
JD 94
Jeb Dunnuck
This incredibly beautiful estate was purchased by Peter Kwok, a Hong Kong-based financier, in 2012. The estate covers a tiny 6.5 hectares (some terraced) just down from Château Barde-Haut, and it remains one of the hidden gems in just about every vintage. The 2016 Château Tour Saint Christophe is another winner. Composed of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc that spent 18 months in 40% new French oak, this concentrated, structured 2016 is one for the cellar. It offers a deep ruby/purple color and a powerful array of black fruits, graphite, and earthy minerality as well as a hint of salinity and spring flowers. It has fine tannins (but plenty of them), beautiful balance, and a straight, focused texture, all pointing to the cellar being your friend. Hide bottles of 4-5 years and enjoy over the following 15-20. Tasted twice.
WS 91
Wine Spectator
This is filled with dark, juicy black currant and blackberry preserve flavors laced liberally with bramble and wood spice accents. The fruit kicks into a second gear through the finish, where a roasted apple wood note adds texture and more energy. Rock-solid. Best from 2021 through 2030.
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Tour Saint Christophe

Tour Saint Christophe

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Tour Saint Christophe , France
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Chateau Tour Saint Christophe was acquired by Peter Kwok and his daughter Karen in 2012. The property is located on the appellation of Saint-Emilion situated at the limit between the two villages of Saint-Emilion and Saint Christophe des Bardes. Today the estate adds 20 hectares.

The Chateau overlooks beautiful dry stone terraces several hundred years old on a chalky-clay terroir. The vineyard is planted on this plateau where it has optimal sunlight and perfect natural drainage. The average age of the vines are thirty years old, they flourish and reach perfection in a limestone clay soil enhanced with sedimentary fragments of flint and chalk. It's this secret alchemy which makes the quality of our 'terroir'.

Aware of the richness of the legacy of the past and to preserve it, they undertook to restore Chateau Tour Saint Christophe. The objective was to revive the vineyard terraces with the disassembling and the reconstruction of this dry stone equipment as it had been built in the 18th century. About 1.5 km of dry-stone terraces have been renovated by re-shaping each stone by hand. A titanic work to preserve the original appearance of these unique terraces in Saint-Emilion.

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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.

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