Vine-growing and winemaking
The plots we cultivate are spread over 3 distinct geographic zones in order to have very typical wines and to allow “haute couture” “assemblages” (blends) realized with the help of Gérard Basset, World Champion Sommelier, assisted by leading oenologists.
The grapes are vinified by plot in very small stainless-steel tanks and are systematically destemmed before undergoing a cold maceration to extract a maximum of fruit. The wines undergo a short passage under new French oak. To reach the maximum quality, we conduct an exceptionally severe sorting in the vineyard as well as in the cellar to keep only about 10% of the volumes produced. It is the association of an exceptional terroir, a drastic selection, very modern high-end wine-making equipment and the know-how of great specialists that makes it possible to obtain wines of truly exceptional quality.
Merlot is the main grape-variety planted at Château de Saint-Cernin, giving outstanding subtle wines with deep aromas of black fruits such as blackcurrant and blackberry.
We use Cabernet-Franc grapes to complement the Merlot and give green pepper, raspberry and violet hints.
Depending on the year, Cabernet-Sauvignon may be added in small quantities to give strength and structure to the wine and enhance its aptitude for aging as it is very rich in tannin and color. It is remarkably robust, of great distinction and intense aromatic complexity.
We occasionally add some Malbec grapes to bring a touch of pepper and spice in less sunny vintages.
The local terroir gives top quality wines, and this is not really a surprise because the vineyard is on the same latitude as Saint-Emilion, just a little further east, i.e. with a little less maritime influence (lower rainfall and higher temperatures) which gives even more concentrated wines than those of its prestigious neighbour. This concentration is even more important as the subsoil is very calcareous which causes the roots to draw their water and nutrient resources very deep, sometimes down to 5 or even 6 meters. This gives exceptional vine-growing conditions and very typical wines.
The plots we have selected are known to be among the best in the region. We have been able to study their soil quality by performing vertical tastings over twenty years.