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WINES BY REGION

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Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou

ch-ducru-beaucaillou.jpgWith the exception of a period in the late 1980s (sadly including 1990) when the cellars had a significant problem with both TCA and brettanomyces, Ducru-Beaucaillou is quite probably the most consistently-performed Château in the Médoc since 1970, producing excellent wines befitting its classification.  They combine elegance with subtle power, fruit with finesse, and above all, perfectly balanced wines of utmost pleasure.

Vineyards:ducru-2009s-and-winemaker.jpg

Relatively modest at around 50 hectares, planted to 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc.  Roughly half of these surround the Château and run nearly to the Gironde, whilst the other half is further inland in St.-Julien.  Total ownership of vineyards is much larger - more than 200 hectares, but the remainder are utilised for other wines, notably Lalande-Borie.  The 50 hectares service only Ducru-Beaucaillou and its second wine, La Croix de Beaucaillou.

The vineyards are planted on deep gravel soils, with notablecailloux or large pebbles that give the property its name.

Winemaking:

ducru-barrel-hall.jpgIt is not surprising that meticulous attention-to-detail is employed at Ducru-Beaucaillou, resulting in the wines’ consistently high level of quality.  Strict and quite severe selection of fruit is taken first in the vineyards at harvest, and the fruit is again sorted by hand prior to being destemmed, pressed and fermented for about two weeks in temperature-controlled stainless steel vats.  A further week’s maceration follows, before blending and being placed in oak, 50-75% new, where it completes malolactic fermentation.  It remains in barrel for around 18 months, being racked every three months, before being eggwhite-fined and bottled.  Occasionally a light filtration is employed.

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