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Chateau de Fonbel, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux 2020

  • $40.00
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WinemakersPhilippe BAILLARGUET, Gilles PAUQUET

Variety: Around 85% Merlot, complemented by the other grape varieties- Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and Carmenère. 

Farming: Organic

Terroir: The vineyard of Château de Fonbel is located in the plain of Saint-Emilion, installed on some 16 hectares. The soils are sandy-gravelly.

Vinification: The average age of the vines in the vineyard is 20 years and the harvest is done manually. Depending on the vintage, part of the wine is vinified in temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks and then goes into barrel to give lightness, elegance and flavour.  allowing a wide range of blending possibilities.

Aging: Takes place in barrels of which 30% are new for 12 months

From our 2023 Cellar Builder Bottle Club

Château de Fonbel, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux 2020

St. Emilion sits on the right bank of Bordeaux, in the southwestern part of France. The climate here is moderate and humid in the warmer months. It is extremely influenced by the Gironde estuary, which floods in from the Atlantic and splits into two distinct rivers as it flows south: the Dordogne to the north and the Garonne to the south. The St. Emilion Grand Cru appellation sits on the right bank of the Dordogne, and unlike its left bank counterparts (Paulliac, St-Estephe, Margaux, etc), it did not achieve wide commercial success until the post-WWII era.
Whereas Cabernet Sauvignon rules the left bank, thriving in the sandy, gravelly soils, Merlot reigns supreme on the right bank. Merlot is a late budding vine, and its delicate buds are more protected from the coastal elements by being planted on the clay-rich soils of the right bank. Moreover, the right bank is also home to much of the region’s Cabernet Franc, which takes well to the limestone-dominant soils found on the slopes.
Chateau de Fonbel is one of a handful of Right Bank properties managed by the Vauthier family, who also have a stake in the infamous (and exceptionally expensive) Chateau Ausone. Château de Fonbel has received special attention because its vineyard is a test-bed for Château Ausone and its second wine, Chapelle d’Ausone. In this way, Fobel provides incredible value to how much wine is packed into the bottle! The vineyards are all organically farmed with the belief that good wine is made in the vineyard, not the cellar. It’s fermented in thermo-regulated stainless steel tanks, and aged in barrels for 12 months, with some portion of new oak. The wine is supple and welcoming, offering a very classic reflection of the St Emilion terroir. Full-bodied, with aromas of black cherry, licorice, cacao, fresh roses, and well-integrated but earthy tannins. Enjoy this with game meats, grilled steak, and a lavish red wine and mushroom sauce.  —Simi Grewal