La Dame de Montrose, St Estèphe , 2016

  Château Montrose

Martin and Olivier Bouygues, of the Bouygues construction and communications empire hold the keys to this magnificent second growth Chateau. In fact it is Martin's wife, Melissa who is the official President of Montrose. The wines of this great estate were firm favourites of their father. In 1995 after an experience with a bottle of the 1990, Martin vowed to buy the chateau. Sure enough, 10 years later and he was in possession of the keys... A huge renovation project began in the cellars, a 20 hectare parcel was re-patriated from Phelan Segur and two of the biggest names in Bordeaux were appointed as directors: Hervé Berland and Jean-Bernard Delmas - clear intent that the Bouygues meant business... This is definitely a chateau with first growth pretentions, producing wines to back that up. The 2016 Dame de Montrose is crafted from 52% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc and 11% Petit Verdot. A little reticent initially, then a gorgeous perfume of minerals and flowers. This is salty and lithe and possesses plenty of class for a second wine. Taut and precise with great purity - not broad-shouldered, but sure to put on some weight during elevage, this is destined to be a very handsome and classical Dame.

Contains Sulphites.

About Château Montrose

Established as a Second Growth in the 1855 classification, Château Montrose enjoys an exceptional geographical situation in Saint-Estèphe, facing the Gironde estuary. Its 95-hectare (235-acre) vineyard benefits from the moderating influence of the vast water mass nearby during the very hot summers and harsh winters. The vineyard is in a single sweep, a rare and priceless advantage in the region. The soil, consisting of deep gravel over clay, favours natural drainage and ensures the vines benefit from a slow and regular water supply from the water reserves in the subsoil.

An extensive renovation program with very strict environmental objectives has been carried out at the estate since it was acquired by Martin and Olivier Bouygues in 2006, reflecting the new owners’ determination to perpetuate the quality of the wine and make Château Montrose an exemplary model of skilled wine-making and sustainable development.

Under the direction of Hervé Berland since 2012, the estate has 68 employees in the vineyard and winery, all of whom share the same philosophy: respect for the terroir and a constant quest for excellence. That philosophy is manifested in meticulous vineyard practices, precise parcel selection and use of only the best grapes to make the premium wine, Château Montrose.

The other lesser-quality grapes are used to make the second wine, La Dame de Montrose, and the third wine, Le Saint-Estèphe de Montrose.

Appellation: St Estèphe

A part of St-Estèphe is separated from Pauillac's Lafite only by a stream.Though St-Estèphe contains some gravel, it is largely renowned for the high clay content of its soils compared with other vineyards on the left bank. These wetter cooler soils favour the Merlot, hence the relatively large proportion of plantings compared neighbouring communes, though Cabernet Sauvignon dominates. The cool soils means the grapes are later ripeing and tend to have high acidities, archetypal St Estèphe is a strong-willed, tannic structured wine to be laid down. The stars of St-Estèphe are Montrose, Cos d’Estournel and Calon-Segur, whilst Haut Marbuzet and Lafon Rochet have been producing excellent value wines over the last few years.

Grape Blend: Cab. Sauvignon | Merlot

A classic partnership. The stock left bank Bordeaux blend also used to good affect in the New World. Cabernet's, acidic, tannic complex qualities marry ideally with Merlot's sweet, softy flesh characteristics.