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Southeast of the Mondot hill, overlooking the town of St. Emilion lies Chateau Troplong Mondot. Named for its location and its former proprietor, Gerus Troplong, this estate has been home to viticulture since 1745. Its 33 hectare vineyard is planted to 90% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. "Cold," late-ripening soils produce one of the most dramatic wines of the appellation: an exotic, flashy, modern Saint-Emilion.
While it possesses more than enough stuffing and structure for extended cellaring, the wine's depth of fruit and supple tannins rarely get in the way of early drinkability. The Valette family, owners of Chateau Troplong Mondot, oversee production of 8000 cases of the Grand Vin each year, in addition to 2-3,000 cases of the second wine, called simply, Mondot.
In Bordeaux the 1955 began with unstable weather conditions just before summer, but turned into an extremely favourable season by the end of the year. A beautiful, sunny and warm—if not hot—period prevailed throughout August and September, until the just the right amount of much-needed rain came along. The crop turned out to be of the highest quality. However, because the vintage was overshadowed by the 1953, it offering wines with a good price-quality ratio that can still be enjoyed today. Ripe grapes and autumn rain guaranteed an excellent year for Sauternes wines. The wines of this vintage vary widely in quality, and many are dominated by tannins. Only the finest wines, such as the Lafleur, Cheval Blanc and Mouton-Rothschild, offer balance and richness.