Each year, Château Beauséjour hDL takes into consideration the quality of the harvest and adapts its vinification accordingly. A subtle balance between the frequency and intensity of the "pumping-over" process must respect the wine's maceration, which varies in duration, in order to extract the best tannins.
For over thirty years, the Michel Rolland Laboratory has accompanied Château Beauséjour hDL during the vinification of each vintage. The wine is afterwards refined for 16 to 18 months in oak "shook" barrels, then aged in bottles at a constant temperature in limestone quarries.
A portion of the vineyard is rooted in argilo-calcareous soil with an asteriated subsoil, while the remaining vines are rooted in the limestone that, here and there, rises to the surface at the top of the hill.
Today, the vineyard's varietals are made up of 81% Merlot, which particularly appreciates the coolness and humidity of the clayey soil and contributes fruitiness and fullness to the château's wines, and 19% Cabernet (16% Cabernet Franc and 3% Cabernet Sauvignon), which provides powerful aroma and structure. On average, the vines are between 35 and 40 years old.
"As I wrote after I tasted this cuvée from barrel, it is clearly the greatest Beauséjour Duffau since the immortal 1990. Under new management, the brillant duo of Nicolas Thienpont and Stephane Derenoncourt is in the process of developping what is on one of the great hillside terroirs of Bordeaux and St-Emilion. This big wine (nearly 15% natural alcohol) is a blend of 77 % Merlot, 19% Cabernet Franc and 4% Cabernet Sauvignon. It boasts an opaque blue/purple color along with a gorgeous bouquet of charcoal, incense, truffles, blackberry jam, black currants, raspberries and flowers. While enormous in the mouth, the limestsone soils in which the grapes are grown give the wine good freshness as well as laser-like clarity and precision. Amazing to taste, this massive, super- concentrated powerhouse comes across as ethereal and almost feminie despite its extravagant fruit, density and richness. It is a modern day legend for sure ! Anticipated maturity : 2025-2050+"Note: 100
The Wine Advocate – mars 2012 – Robert Parker
“Unquestionably the greatest Beauséjour-Duffau since the 1990, this property has made a strong comeback under the brilliant management of Nicolas Thienpont and Stephan Derenoncourt. One of St.-Emilion's greatest terroirs, it has underperformed in most vintages, although it generally produces very interesting wines because of its location and old vines. The 2009 is a whopper. A blend of 77% Merlot, 19% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Cabernet Sauvignon, with 14.8% natural alcohol, there is no hint of its aging in 100% new oak barrels given the extraordinary concentration and texture of the fruit. An inky/purple color is accompanied by a sumptuous bouquet of spring flowers, black truffles, wet rocks, blackberries, and black currants. The wine builds incrementally in the mouth with an ethereal lightness and precision that is unexpected in view of its massive concentration, power, and intensity. One of the vintage's most compelling efforts, it should evolve for 30-40 years. Bravo! (Tasted three times.) »
Note: 96 - 98+
The Wine Advocate - avril 2010 – Robert Parker