Wineries

Angelus

  Angelus - one of the icons of Saint Emilion. Who among wine lovers wouldn't know this "Kingdom of the Bells" ... We visited it at the end of April 2018. We were greeted by the friendly Anna Tkachenko-Marie, but instead of moving in, Annie leads us in the opposite direction - out almost to the road. I guess she was trying to show us off the many bells of varying sizes up above the entrance. She presses a button on the mysterious box that she has been holding in her hand since the beginning. The bells go off and... is that the national anthem...? I turn to Annie with a questioning look. She smiles, winks and nods. What a nice welcome! :-)     After paying tribute to the guests and their co...

Brane-Cantenac

  Sometimes you're lucky...      You always look forward to a visit to the iconic Chateau. You just never know in advance who will take you in. It could be a "hostess" type employee who has perfect knowledge of the winery, but basically acts like an employee. Or it could be the cellar master or technical director, who are also employees, but the visit is something else. The hostess keeps her distance and never pulls a bottle of en primeur samples of the latest vintage out of the cupboard. Whereas the cellar master will calmly take you to a tank and pour something that is still in the process of being made. Just out of curiosity. And also because during the visit, he'll know that you ...

Clos Manou

  I didn't know this winery very well and I didn't plan to visit it. How fortunate that fate brought us here ...   I was delighted that the Portes Ouvertes 2022 in Médoc started on Friday. It was, but I somehow forgot to find out what time. Because on Friday it started in the evening ... What now? I hastily arranged to visit two wineries. And one of them was a discovery called Clos Manou. Once again, I was pleasantly surprised by how helpful and accommodating the winemakers in Bordeaux are. Despite the fact that they are busy, they find time to give their best to a bunch of Czechs they don't know at all.    Stéphane Dief and his son Françoise Dief started from scratch in 1998. They st...

Cos d'Estournel

  Visiting Cos d'Estournel is simply an experience. This Chateau is simply not overlooked. For one thing, it's right next to the road, so whenever you leave Pauillac and head north, you're bound to drive by. And then there's the visage. It looks completely different from all the other wineries. You'd suspect the owner and architect of this being a good marketing ploy - it's so easy to remember the look of Cos d'Estournel.     In reality, it was a little different. Louis Gaspard d'Estournel built this early 19th-century estate in the style that had charmed him when he was in the Far East. And because he was lucky enough to inherit land in such an exceptionally good location for growing vine...

Domaine de la Solitude

  You wake up to a sunny June morning, have a good breakfast and a few dozen minutes later, in the shade of a lime tree, a handsome cellarmistress pours you nicely chilled white and rosé wines ... Could you ask for a nicer summer morning? :-)        The winery is called Domaine de la Solitude, it's in the Pessac-Léognan appellation (there's also a winery of the same name in Châteauneuf-du-Pape) and we stopped there as part of Portes Ouvertes 2022. To take it one step at a time, we tasted these white wines:: Petite Lune 2018 Clos de Lunes 2017 Lune d'Argent 2018 Notre Dame de la Solitude 2016 Domaine de la Solitude 2015 Château Lespault-Martillac 2013   Rosé: Rosé d...

Domaine de Merlet

  This winery is not large, with just over 4 hectares of vineyards. This was matched by a modest, but practical and in a way cozy space for wine tasting - a counter built just outside the door of the small vatroom, just in front of the stainless steel tanks. There was only one drawback: it was a bit cramped inside, i.e. in the shade. The June sun was beating down outside and it was not pleasant to let it heat you up at all.     But the mood was excellent and Joël Tauzin, the head of the winery and a member of the family that owns it, was in good spirits. We were not encouraged to taste his products. We went through most of the samples that were available, viz: Domaine de Merlet 2019 Domai...

Dompierre

  A brilliant pioneer and a rising superstar.   We've just started our visit to Chateau Doyac when my phone rings. Unpleasant thing, but I'll take it. Some guy asks, where are we? He says we have an appointment to visit him and a tasting. I'm not aware of any such thing. I'm very careful to mark my appointments. I promise I'll text him tonight. When I get to the e-mails, I find that I did write to him, but there's no reply. I think it must have wandered off somewhere... For a while, I considered not visiting him. We've got a busy schedule all week. I finally decide to skip lunch and go there. I'm lucky enlightened me! This chateau is worth a week of fasting!   We park and a smiling young m...

La Fleur Morange

  In the "nineties" Jean-François Julien was a carpenter who knew nothing about viticulture.His only contact with the wine industry was when he repaired furniture for Count Stephan von Neipperg, owner of Château Canon La Gaffelière.Today, his little Chateau has the same attribute behind its name as the Count had then: Grand Cru Classé. But let's take it one step at a time... In the village of St-Pey-d'Armens, where Jean-François lived from birth, the local council decided to build social housing. On land that Jean-François and his wife Véronique owned. The municipal authorities urged them to give them up. "Never!" said a man with the appearance of a rugby player. "I'd rather plant a vineyard."And as he ...

Lafargue

  We visited Château Lafargue as part of the Portes Ouvertes Pessac-Léognan in June 2022. And it was a good choice. Mrs. Muriel Brunel, the sales director, greeted us still at the car park and was already inviting us in, inside, where the temperature was much more bearable.        She briefly introduced us to their winery and ... we started to taste. Muriel is a likable, action-packed woman who has worked at Château Lafargue since 1997 and knows everything you ask her. Just the man for the job. Well, about the wines ... ... we tasted: Dauphin ou Château Lafargue 2018 Château Lafargue 2018 Château Lafargue Cuvée Alexandre 2019 Château Lafargue Cuvée Alexandre 2018 Prestige C...

Lafon-Rochet

  We arrived a little early. Our friendly guide Mathilde Bocquillon asked us for a few minutes of patience. It seems to me that the French don't mind if you arrive a bit late - 15 minutes is the standard, apparently. They're more surprised if you show up early.     First, a brief history: the Antoinette de Guillemotes, who was the owner of Domaine Rochet, marries Etienne de Lafon, and so Chateau Lafon-Rochet is born. This took place in the 17th century. In 1960, Chateau Lafon-Rochet is bought by Guy Tesseron, who passes it on to his children in 1999. Mathilde considers one fact important, namely the painting of the Chateau building yellow (Mathilde is pictured with Lafon-Rochet before the ...

Pédesclaux

  I must admit that I didn't expect much from this chateau. The opposite was true ...     You arrive in front of a massive iron gate. You ring the bell, introduce yourself, and after a few seconds, the several tons of metal start to slide sideways. The road is clear and you feel you have been allowed to enter the grounds of a well-classified military base. From the car park you walk through a piece of vineyard and soon you are in the reception area. A nice lady seats you in a stylish lounge. It's almost 40 outside in the shade, so you appreciate the air-conditioning more than the artsy furnishings, bringing the temperature down to a level at which at least the vital organs function.  ...

So far only photos ...

  Below are other Chateaux that our Bordeaux family group has visited in greater or lesser numbers. Occasionally, I will go into more detail about some of the visits. For now, I am only showing photos ...     Médoc  Le Reysse     Tour de By     Saint-Estéphe Calon-Ségur   Cos Labory   Le Crock   Lilian Ladouys   Montrose   Petit Bocq   Phélan-Ségur      Pauillac Grand-Puy-Lacoste   Lafite Rothschild   Les Sadons   Pichon Baron   Pichon Longueville Comtesse   Pontet Canet                   &n...