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Larroque Bordeaux Blanc is made from 100% Sauvignon Blanc
Color : Pale yellow with green tints.
Nose : Complex aromas of white flowers, exotic fruits, citrus and boxwood, with a touch of minerality.
Mouth : Aromatic, with a nice richness and freshness. Predominant flavors of tart, crisp fruit.
Marie-Christine, the daughter of Henri Ducourt, purchased this prestigious left-bank property in 1979, which lies on the border of the Graves appellation.
The 60-hectare vineyard was rapidly replanted and the château building, which dates from 1348, was restored.
Our family now produces three different-colored wines there: red, white and rosé.
Grown on loamy-clay soil.
Harvest : Machine harvesting in the cool, early morning
Maceration : Skin-contact maceration for several hours, depending on ripeness, and pressing
Fermentation : Beginning of the cold alcoholic fermentation (12°C / 53°F) then an increase in temperature to finish the fermentation at 20°C / 68°F.
Enjoy this wine as an aperitif or during the meal with fish, seafood or chicken salad.
Marie Christine, the daughter of Henri Ducourt, purchased this prestigious left-bank property in 1979, which lies on the border of the Graves appellation. The 60-hectare vineyard was rapidly replanted and the château building, which dates from 1348, was restored. The family now produces three different-colored wines there: red, white and rosé.
In 1858, Ducourt family settled at Château des Combes in Ladaux, a small rural village in the south east of Bordeaux, in the heart of Entre-Deux-Mers area. Over time, new generations have followed in their footsteps; a passion for wine has become a profession, and their knowledge and the estate have grown ever greater as they have been passed down the line.
Pierre Ducourt, then his children and his grand-children farmed several hectares of vines that belonged to the estate. The arrival of the grandfather, Henri Ducourt, at the property marked an important turning point in the family business. He, with the help of his three children (Marie Christine, Philippe and Bernard), decided to drastically revitalize the company and turned the family vineyard into one of Bordeaux’s largest winemaking facilities, with 450 hectares of land and 14 chateaus in 6 different AOC's.
The crocodile is the emblem of Henri Ducourt’s vigorous business spirit, which lives on today, as strong as ever, in each family member. And what better ambassadors could exist to remind people that Entre-Deux-Mers is where this family adventure began?
In 1962, Henri Ducourt, a young winemaker, used to work 14 hours a day managing the 20 hectares of vines he had inherited from his father. He had a good friend, his neighbor, who owned 14 hectares and used to work with his two sons. At this time, suffice to say that running a vineyard was not the career that parents wished for their children, preferring instead to steer them towards more stable jobs. Some though, including Henri, were obstinate and unwilling to part from the vineyard. So, hard-working and hard-headed, Henri Ducourt slowly but surely bought the land and the vines of the neighboring producers and found himself by the mid-80’s at the head of almost 300 hectares of vineyards! One day, as much to poke fun as through admiration, the son of his friend drew a crocodile on a sign to represent the tenacity, lucidity and cold-blooded business spirit of Henri Ducourt, then planted this sign among the far-reaching vines of his neighbor.
Amused by the gesture, Henri Ducourt was inspired by the crocodile when he rebuilt the winery and asked that the new vats were decorated with this symbol. Today, Henri’s children and grandchildren manage 450 hectares of vineyards, always persistent, ready for new challenges, and faithful to what their parents have built. The crocodile has since become the emblem of the family.
Graduated as Oenologist in 2002 (University of Toulouse).
Before joining Ducourt in 2014, he worked for various estates :
- Domaine de l’Hortus in Pic Saint Loup
- Les caves de Sieur d’Arques in Limoux
- Chateau Carbonnieux, Grand Cru Classé in Pessac Léognan
The Ducourt's have always known that quality grapes are essential for making a good wine. Therefore they take the utmost care in the vineyards, to get the best from every plot of land. The size of the business also allows them to make numerous investments in the latest tools, which enable to unite traditional knowledge with the latest technologies, and therefore become ever more precise and respectful of the environment in their work.
The latest equipment
They regularly invest in new equipment for two main reasons : a desire to constantly evolve and improve quality while reducing the amount of strenuous and dangerous work undertaken by their co-workers.
With the development of the vineyard's surface, the harvests are now carried out with the help of the latest generation of harvesting machines, which make it possible to collect the grapes in the cool of the morning. Harvest is quicker offering more flexibility and quality improvement.
Among the latest acquisitions is a machine that allows to plant using a GPS guidance as well as an innovative and precise spraying system and flexible frames that allow to reduce waste and the amount of treatment products used.
A Grand-Cru-worthy setup
The family invests in equipment that is worthy of a Grand Cru, and therefore push further in the constant quest for quality, which applies to the entire range of wines.
The new pressing system allows them to press the grapes in a completely inert environment to prevent any oxygenation of the juice and to preserve the aromas of each varietal, to obtain more intense and fresher wines. The wineries and the stainless-steel vats are thermo-regulated in order to keep the juice in the best conditions possible and to maintain complete control over the entire fermentation process. They have also invested in a cross-flow filtration system for filtering wines before bottling, which ensures optimal quality and no waste. Finally, to improve safety for the co-workers they also regularly invest in new equipment such as carbon-monoxide detectors, helping to prevent accidents including asphyxiation during the cleaning of the vats. The most recent investment to date involves the bottling line that was set up with the collaboration of the employees in order to reduce their workload.
6 generations of shared experience
They have the good fortune to be able to build on several generations of winemaking experience and produce wines that respect their local typicity. They frequently organize tastings of two old vintages so as to improve their understanding of the wines’ evolution over time, and so as to be able to really tell people when is the best time to drink the wines.
Castelmaure Corbieres Vin-Gris (Rose) is made from 80% Grenache, 10% Carignan, 10% Cinsault.
Pale pink rose color, a classic gris de gris wine with salmon hues. Delicate strawberry nose, seamless and fine pointed.
Light pink-hued, the 2018 Vin Gris Rose from the Corbières has a juicy, fruity bouquet of ripe strawberries, violets, and white peach to go with a clean, balanced, deliciously gulpable style on the palate. It’s well done and I suspect a good value."
- Jeb Dunnuck (March 2020), 90 pts
Ambre de Maltus Bordeaux Blanc is made from 70% Sauvignon Blanc, 30% Sémillion.
The wine was aged in French Oak barrels for a few month (between 6 and 8 months depending on the barrel's toastiness and cooper)
Delicious with grilled fish or grilled vegetables
"A blend of mainly Sauvignon Blanc fermented in new wood, this wine is ripe and smoothly textured. It offers hints of herbal flavors but the main thrust is towards spice and white-fruit flavors. - Roger VOSS"
- Wine Enthusiast (February 2020), 90 pts
Burgo Viejo Rioja Blanco Organic is made from 60% Viura and 40% Trempranillo Blanco
No Oak. Aged 3 months on the lees with frequent batonnage
Pale yellow color with green tones. Fresh and intense flavors of white fruits, peach, apple and some citrus notes.
Full-bodied mouth with nice balance of volume and length.
Vineyards are located in Alfaro.
Manual harvest in 8 kilograms baskets.
Light pressing of the grapes.
Fermentation at controlled temperature in stainless steel tanks.
No Malolactic fermentation.
Aged 3 months on the lees with frequent batonnage. (stirring of the lees)
Pairs with seafood, pasta and rice dishes, smooth cheeses.
2019 Burgo Viejo Rioja Blanco Organic - Gold Medal - Berliner Wein Trophy
Cazaux Vacqueyras Blanc Les Clefs d'Or is made from 50% Clairette, 30% Roussanne and 20% Grenache Blanc.
A wine with lively acidity, expressive aromas of fennel and white flowers. It is long and full in the mouth with minty and anisy aromas mixed with white peach flavors. Refreshing and mineral character.
Clairette grapes are green harvested to concentrate and harmonize aroma. Each grape varietal is hand picked separately. Pressing with skin contact at low temperature. Aged 12 months in stainless steel tank. (No oak)
Enjoy this wine with all sorts of fish starters, squid salad with olive oil and basil. A must try with fresh oysters.
"The 2018 Vacqueyras Les Clefs D'Or Blanc is another head-turner. A blend of 50% Clairette, 30% Roussanne, and 20% Grenache Blanc brought up in tank, it offers a clean, vibrant style carrying classy notes of tart peach, citrus, lemongrass, and exotic herbs. Medium-bodied, balanced, and with a kiss of minerality, it’s solid today, yet I suspect it will age gracefully for 7-8 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (September 2019, Southern Rhône Part 2: 2017 & 2018 from Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Cairanne, and Rasteau), 92 pts
Hommage Blanc is made with 75% Roussanne and 25% Viognier. 2019 was the first vintage with 20% of the fruits coming from the Estate, the rest comes from James Berry, Glenrose and Adelaida. You will love this wine because of its perfume and its mouthfeel. Aged in oak for 6 months, it is elegant with a nice texture.
The wine has a refined bouquet of honeysuckle and some tropical notes. Nicely balanced, it has a great texture, a lingering finish with a beautiful minerality. To describe it I would use the word elegance. A beautifull white wine that can be aged for 8 years with an optimum drinking window between 3 to 6 years and ideal temperature to serve at 52F.
"The flagship white, the 2018 Hommage Blanc is a deeper, richer white based on 75% Roussanne and 25% Viognier that was brought up in 30% new French oak. Lots of white peach, honeysuckle, orange blossom, and hints of citrus all emerge from the glass, and it offers medium to full body, hints of spice and brioche, a rounded, supple texture, and outstanding length. It's going to shine on the dinner table. I expect it to put on weight with a year in bottle and keep for over a decade."
- Jeb DUNNUCK (October 31st 2019), 93+pts
Grand Veneur Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc Le Miocene is made from 60% Clairette, 40% Roussanne
Pale yellow colour with hints of green, aromas of white flowers (may blossom, honeysuckle).
The palate is pleasantly balanced between liveliness and roundness, which brings out characteristics of dried apricot, honey and elderberry. A Châteauneuf du Pape white displaying a great finesse.
Best between 1 and 8 years.
Soil type Coming from the single vineyard named “La Fontaine”, the plot is facing north.It is made of clay-sand and limestone. Thanks to the northern orientation, it is always very well aired. This sector allow the Roussane and Clairette to mature in great conditions without losing freshness, which we believe is key point. Winemaking & ageing Whole-bunch pressing. Vinification in stainless-steel tanks. Fermentation temperature controlled at 15°C.
"Based on a 60/40 split of Clairette and Roussanne brought up all in tank, the 2019 Châteauneuf Du Pape Le Miocène Blanc offers a pretty, already complex nose of mulled citrus and pear fruits, leafy herbs, and honeyed toast. With notable richness, medium body, and bright acidity, as well as a clean, dry finish, it’s classic white from this great region to enjoy over the coming 3-5 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (October 2020), 92 pts
Grand Veneur Cotes Du Rhone Viognier Blanc is made from 100% Viognier.
Soil: clay/sand with limestone.
Yield: 38 Hl / hectare
Hand-picked harvest. Vinification in stainless steel vats at a controlled temperature of 18°C.
Bottled early, 6 months after the harvest.
The color is clear and brilliant. A very intense nose of flowers, white peach and pear. On the palate, aromas are expressed with balance and an amazing freshness. A great example of Rhone white, single grape "Viognier".
To be enjoyed young, but can age for 3-5 years.
Located next to the single vineyard “Les Champauvins”, nearby the Domaine Grand Veneur. Soils are made of clay and sand with limestone.
Winemaking & aging
Hand-picked harvest. Fermentation in temperature-controled vats. Early bottling, 6 months after harvest.
"A rare good Viognier from the Southern Rhône, the 2019 Domaine Grand Veneur Cotes du Rhone Blanc de Viognier offers delectable floral and apricot aromas, a medium-bodied, taut feel on the palate and a cool, refreshing finish tinged with citrus zest and silk. Drink it over the next year. - Joe Czerwinski"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (September 2020), 90 pt
Philippe Milan Pommard AOC is 100% Pinot Noir
This wine has been aged in Oak (25% new Oak)
This is a little more structured and the style goes more toward the "vin de garde", or wines meant to age. This wine needs some food, or sometime in the decanter right now. It is well structured and reminds me of a Volnay. As a matter of fact, the parcel is located right next to Volnay. The finish is long and still quite juicy with chewy tannins lingering.
Continuum Red Blend 2017 is made from 54% Cabernet Sauvignon,31% Cabernet Franc, 9% Petit Verdot, 6% Merlot
VINTAGE NOTES- The 2018 growing season was a winemaker’s dream given the overall cooler weather patterns paired with ample sunshine. The spring brought timely, abundant rainfall nourishing the earth and setting the stage for a healthy crop. Moderately cool temperatures post veraison allowed the fruit an extended hang time, retaining vibrancy and evolving character complexity. Berry size was smaller than average, however berry count was up given the bountiful rain, leading to a relatively generous crop size for the estate at 2.4 tons per acre, still quite small by any measure. Harvest began 135 days from bloom on September 27th, and continued at an unforced and purposeful pace, reflecting the fewest degree days on record for August and September. Harvest concluded on October 22nd.
WINEGROWING- Continuum is estate grown on our Sage Mountain Vineyard. It’s location, high on Pritchard Hill along the eastern ridge above Oakville, overlooks Napa Valley and the San Francisco Bay. The rocky, volcanic soils of the site focus the vine’s energy keeping yields low yielding fruit of depth and complexity. 38 acres of mature estate vineyard, planted in 1991 and 1996, with additional plantings in 2004, 2010, together comprise 38 distinct vineyard blocks. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Merlot are grown from 1300 to 1600 feet in elevation, on western and southern facing aspects with slight northern and eastern slopes in places. This diversity of plantings on our volcanic soils are the essence of the complexity of Continuum.
PRODUCTION- Continuum is 100% estate grown, produced and bottled. All fruit is selectively hand-harvested at night. The fruit is then sorted before and after de-stemming, and gravity fed into French oak or concrete tanks. A threeday cold soak is followed by fermentation, receiving three to four pumpovers daily, and délestage two to three times in total during the most active period. The wine remains on skins in tank for 20 to 40 days. All lots are then drained, basket pressed, and transferred with lees for malolactic fermentation and aging. In 2018, Continuum spent 22 months in barrel. 63 percent of French oak barrels were new and 35 percent were once used. A single concrete amphora was also used for aging. The wine clarified slowly and settled naturally in our cold barrel room, was racked sparingly and bottled without fining or filtration. Each vineyard lot was tasted and carefully considered many times to assemble the 2018 blend. TASTING NOTES- 2018 Continuum shows energy and verve. The wine expresses purity and precision, with high tone aromatics of red and blue fruit, deep plum and rose oil. This vintage shows an approachable nerve of the land in the refined mineral quality on the palate. The surrounding native vegetation of bay and sage is evidenced in an earthy, savory profile. This is a shimmering, silky and harmoniously integrated wine with densely packed fine grain tannins. 2018 Continuum is a wine for the ages, delicious today with a long life ahead.
DECANTING- For the fullest sensory experience we encourage decanting to allow the wine to breathe before serving. Decanting awakens the wine’s more purely fragrant expression and enhances the suppleness of the palate. Continuum is accessible and enjoyable upon release; however extended aging will be richly rewarded.
Composed of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Cabernet Franc, 9% Petit Verdot and 6% Merlot, the deep garnet-purple 2018 Proprietary Red has a fantastically fragrant nose of candied violets, red roses, Morello cherries and blackcurrant pastilles with hints of wild blueberries, red currant jelly, iron ore and forest floor, plus a waft of cinnamon stick. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is completely packed with tightly wound black and red berry layers, framed by firm, ripe, finely grained tannins and seamless freshness, finishing with incredibly persistent and evocative floral and mineral layers. An absolute head-turner, this 2018 is all that and then some. Tim Mondavi mentioned that this is due to be bottled in just a few weeks—mid-August—meaning this barrel sample I tasted is pretty close to being a finished wine. With the estate vineyard turning 10 year's old in 2018, here's where we see how incredibly special this singular Pritchard Hill site really is. -Wine Advocate 98-100 Points