Special Buy – Claret Under £200 a Case
We have a selection of ready to drink clarets that offer superb value for money. It is also worthwhile to bear in mind that we offer some of our wines in Half Cases (6 x 75cl bottles) so you can find some Grand Cru Classé Chateaux to suit every budget.
La Tour du Pin 2006 (6 x 75cl) - £152.50
La Tour du Pin was originally part of the great Figeac estate (as was Cheval Blanc). Figeac is the largest estate in Saint Emilion and is also one of the oldest Bordeaux estates. Previously owned by the Moueix family – one of Bordeaux's great wine making dynasties – La Tour du Pin was purchased by Chateau ChevalBlanc in2006, and subsequently by LVMH.
The team at Cheval Blanc have instigated finely tuned plot management systems and soil analysis to release the full potential of the 40 year old vines. To build on these efforts the first vintage was conducted in small vats to respect the diversity of the vineyard. The vatting process was carefully controlled on a case by case basis to bring out the potential of each grape variety, each type of soil and each type of vat. This has produced a wine with ripe – but not over ripe fruit, tannins which are dense but not harsh and fine mellow flavours of wood which leave the wine flavours to the fore.
La Tour du Pin vineyards cover 22 acres and lie between Cheval Blanc and Figeac at the edge of the Pomerol appellation. The soil is considered the more gravelly of the three La Tour properties, closer to the conditions of neighbours Figeac and Cheval Blanc. This is definitely a wine to watch and has been recently applauded by Robert Parker as well worth hunting out.Quinault L'Enclos 2006 - £195.00
Robert Parker 90 points. “The 2006 Quinault l’Enclos exhibits the elegant style that Raynaud has achieved in every vintage over the last decade. Sweet black raspberry and currant fruit along with hints of spring flowers and smoky oak are followed by a round, gentle, restrained wine revealing outstanding purity, medium body, and a fine finish."
Château Quinault L'Enclos is a tiny walled Château and vineyard within the city of Libourne in what was until 1973 the satellite appellation Sables Saint Émilion. It is thought that the Château takes its name from a famous writer - Philippe Quinault (1635/1688), who was a very popular Parisian dramatist and librettist at that time. The wines are known as garagiste as though the vineyard may be small the wine has achieved somewhat of a cult status.
Quinault L'Enclos was owned by Dr. Alain Raynaud (one time president of the Union des Grands Crus, owner of the Pomerol estates Châteaux Croix de Gay and La Fleur de Gay and supervisor at Château Lascombes) and Françoise Raynaud. In 2008 it was purchased by Bernard Arnault and Albert Freres, co-owners of Chateaux Cheval Blanc and Yquem – it is now part of the the LVMH group.
Sansonnet 2006 - £120.00
Château Sansonnet is located at the east of Saint Emilion, on the highest point of the plateau, neighbouring Trottvielle. It's name translated from the French means Château of the Starlings. Sansonnet has a rich history, as the Château belonged in the 19th century to the Duke Decazes, Prime Minister of Louis XVIII, who was also Ambassador to Britain and founder of the industrialised metallurgy in France. The town Decazeville was named after him and is still there today.
The d’Aulan family (former owners of the Champagne House Piper-Heidsieck) took it over in 1999. Nowadays they are part of Edonia, a French family-owned negotiant business which owns and distributes their wines from Château Sansonnet, La Croix du Casse, Jonqueyres, Clinet, the Argentinian Alta Vista, and the sweet Tokaj from Château Dereszla, amongst others.
Sansonnet is a relatively unknown estate steeped in history which in recent years has been producing some very good wine and is a little gem. The château is starting to be recognised once more since the change of ownership and has won awards across the globe including the Hachette Guide's Coup de Coeur and a gold medal in the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. Its quality belies its price and offers much better value than more familiar estates from St. Emilion. For this very reason Sansonnet is a favourite of mine and well worth considering when you are looking for a good honest claret.
Sansonnet's wines are a deep crimson purple with notes of raspberries, minerals, cherries, smoke, blackcurrants and coffee. They are medium to full bodied wines which are complex, intense and well balanced. The wine expresses the rocky sub soil when young but deepens and becomes smoother with age. They should be cellared as they have good longevity.
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