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The usual blend is a full 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, with 25% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot, reflecting roughly the plantings within the vineyard itself, and recent replanting has been intended to maintain this high level of Cabernet Sauvignon. Average age of vines 40 years.
Vinification: Work is led by winemaker and managing director Marjolaine de Coninck, who joined the team in 2010. The winemaking is carried out in half wooden vats, half concrete vats, all fully replaced in 2010, and that will form part of the new winery when it is completed in 2015. The wine spends 18 months in barrels, with between 50-60% new oak. Fabien Raymond works as technical director alongside Marjolaine de Coninck.
Terroir: The vineyard is divided into three plots – one right next to the chateau building in the village of Margaux, where the soil is largely gravel and clay. A second, more gravel heavy plot runs alongside the D2 Route des Chateaux road, and the third is in the village of Soussans, to the north of Margaux, of marl, silt and gravel.
In Bordeaux, the heat resulted in early flowering. Also, this led to an early harvest after a very hot summer. As a starting point, there is great maturity in the grapes, and one can expect a more opulent vintage than in the last few years.
The summer this year has been the warmest since 1959, yet the rain has fallen at the right times during the growing season. The harvest took place two weeks before the norm and will yield grapes with high potential alcohol and the lowest acidity since the 2003 vintage. As they say in Bordeaux: "It has been a good and extreme growing season which hopefully also produces great wines".