Chateau Lafleur, Pensees de Lafleur and Les Champs Libres

Chateau Lafleur, Pensees de Lafleur and Les Champs Libres
“It’s hard to describe perfection. It’s not just power and depth. It’s something mystical and ethereal. The wine just floats on your palate with incredible density yet precise. Taste it and you want it forever. So creamy and textured. Glorious. 100 points." – James Suckling

"Gorgeous elixir." – Jancis Robinson

Merlot is back in 2015. Baptiste Guinaudeau of Lafleur can never remember seeing such wonderful Merlot. That is not to say that the Cabernet Franc is anything less than spectacular; this varietal still expresses itself with complex aromas and brooding layers of minerals and starry fruit; it’s just that the Merlot offers something quite unique. It complements the Cabernet with an opulent core of fruit and a breath-taking, sumptuous texture. The combination makes this one of the most complete and engaging Lafleurs we have ever tasted. Baptiste describes it as having the concentration of the awesome 2009, but with more charm. We think it possesses the same decadent structure of 2009, but with brighter, more elevated fruit. 2015 will certainly rank amongst the most distinguished vintages of Lafleur. If the quality is not motivation enough (and it should be), the release price should make this utterly compelling. At £2250 per 6 bottles, this is a fraction of the price of similar great vintages, such as: 2000, 2005, 2009 and 2010 (all £3750-£6000 per 6).

The splendid Merlots also feature in their exquisite Pensées de Lafleur. This always hails from the same strip of land that possesses a different geological composition to the rest of the vineyard. There is less gravel and more clay, which make Pensées a more typical style of Pomerol. The 2015 is an extraordinarily fine example, full of early promise.

And finally to Les Champs Libres - the white wine of Lafleur if you like - although this is produced from the finest plots at sister property, Grand Village. The first two vintages were exclusively made from Sauvignon Blanc clones from the Loire, but as the name suggests, the team is not bound by regulations; their sole focus is to achieve the best wine humanly possible. In 2015 one plot of Semillon excelled - so much so that it couldn’t be ignored and forced its way into the blend. The wine retains its minerality, florality and vivacity one expects from the finest Sauvignon Blanc, but the Semillon lends a little texture and even more complexity. It is an astonishing and unique wine.

We are proud to be one of the Guinaudeau’s formal distributors. We admire their extraordinary attention to detail and their constant pursuit of quality. Their wines defy challenging vintages and truly excel in the best conditions. 2015 is clearly one of the very best!

Chateau Lafleur 2015
"The 2015 Lafleur is a blend of 51% Merlot and 49% Cabernet Franc picked 11-15 September and 1-2 October respectively. As usual, I waited for the Grand Vin to open in the glass, so I chewed the fat with Baptiste Guinaudeau before I started to tap away at the laptop. It unfurls beautifully delivering small red cherries, cranberry and Japanese nori aromas that gain intensity with every swirl. The palate is medium-bodied with full and rounded tannin, very complex with layers of cranberry and raspberry fruit, veins of white pepper and bay leaf, structured on the finish but not as foreboding as the leviathan 2010 Lafleur. It will still require ten years in bottle to reach its plateau, but it will be one of the standout wines of the vintage. 97-99/100." – Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate

Pensees de Lafleur
"The 2015 Les Pensees de Lafleur is a blend of 54% Merlot, picked on September 21, and 46% Cabernet Franc that was picked on October 2. It has a broody bouquet with cranberry and raspberry coulis aromas, touches of dried herbs and brine developing with time in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with lightly spiced red berry fruit, vibrant in the mouth, very harmonious with superb precision on the finish. What a gorgeous deuxième vin from Baptiste Guinaudeau. 91-93/100." – Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate

Les Champs Libres
"The 2015 Les Champs Libres (from the Guinaudeau family at Château Lafleur in Pomerol) includes a little Semillon Blanc this year. It was picked between September 5-9. It has an attractive bouquet with lime cordial, dried pineapple and honeysuckle scents that are very well defined. The palate is fresh and crisp on the entry, vibrant and energetic, the 100% new oak barely noticeable. This is one of the less-known gems from the Guinaudeaus and it comes highly recommended. 91-93/100." – Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate