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Describe the soils of the Medoc
Gravel atop limestone; in Margaux, the subsoil is marl
Describe the Medoc region
- 48 miles long (from Pointe de Grave to Blanquefort Jalle)
- This includes the Bas-Medoc and the Haut-Medoc
Describe the Medoc AOC (aka Bas-Medoc)
- vineyards since mid-1800s
- Gunz and Pyrenean gravel atop clay-limestone
- Mostly Merlot
- About 660 producers
- 11-13% alcohol
- 50-66 hl/ha
- 5K-10K vines/ha
Describe the Haut-Medoc AOC
- 36 miles long
- vineyards since 1700s
- Gunz gravel atop clay, limestone, sand, iron pan
- 10-12.5% alcohol
- 48-66 hl/ha
- 6.5K-10K vines/ha
What is iron pan soil?
A hard layer that prevents root penetration
How many classified growths are within the Haut-Medoc AOC?
- 3rd Growth: La Lagune Ludon
- 4th Growth: La Tour-Carnet Saint-Laurent
- 5th Growth: Belgrave Saint-Laurent, de Camensac Saint-Laurent, Cantemerle Macau
What does jalles mean?
Are all Medoc AOCs for red wine only?
How are whit and rose wines from the Medoc labeled?
- Regional Bordeaux AOCs
- Vin de Pays de l'Atlantique
Does the Medoc AOC include the Haut-Medoc AOC?
- It only includes the Bas-Medoc
What is the main grape grown in the Medoc AOC
Merlot (CS struggles to ripen)
Was was Saint-Estephe known as until the 1700s?
Saint-Estephe-de-Calon ("calon" is Gaulish for "wood")
Name the 2 channels that drain the marshes in Saint-Estephe
- Saint-Vincent channel drains the Lafite marshes
- Mappon channel drains the Vertheuil marshes
Describe the soil of Saint-Estephe
- gravel atop marl/limestone; iron pan is deep
- higher percent of clay so drainage is slow
Describe the soil of Pauillac
- gravel atop marl/limestone; iron pan is deep
- Most owned by 17 classified growths
- Separated from Saint-Estephe by the marshland around the Jalle de Breuil
Describe the soil of Saint-Julien
- gravel atop clay, marl, iron-pan
- Separated from Pauillac by the Ruisseau de Julliac stream
Describe the soil of Listrac-Medoc
- Only 3 gravel mounds
- Listrac: clay, gravel
- Fontreaud: clay, sand, gravel
- Fourcas: sand, gravel
- East of gravel mounds is clay-limestone or clay-marl
- West of gravel mounds is small gravel and sand
Describe the soil of Moulis-en-Medoc
- S/W: sand, gravel, clay-marl, clay-gravel atop clay, marl, iron-pan
- Center/NE: clay-limestone, clay-gravel atop gravel, marl, limestone
Describe the soil of Margaux
- thinnest layer of Gunz gravel in the Medoc (produces thin wines in rainy years) atop limestone or clay-marl
- Excellent drainage
- Air movement due to breezes off Gironde
What is the size of each Medoc commune AOC?
- Saint-Estephe: 1300 ha (view of Gironde)
- Pauillac: 1200 ha
- Saint-Julien: 925 ha
- Listrac-Medoc ("fringe"): 670 ha
- Moulis-en-Medoc ("mill"): 600 ha
- Margaux: 1400 ha
What is the size of each Graves AOC?
- Graves: 5400 ha (including palus which are Bordeaux AOC)
- Sauternes: 2385 ha (2/3 semillon, 1/3 sauvignon blanc)
- Barsac: 620 ha
- Cerons: 1000 ha (445 ha red, 555 ha white but only 100 ha designated for Cerons AOC)
Describe the wines of Saint-Estephe
- Young: hard, tannic, unapproachable
- Mature: rich texture and heady note of spice
Describe the wines of Pauillac
- consistent, power and finesse
- Firmly structured that age well
Describe the wines of Saint-Julien
- Most underrated commune
- Most "new world" style (supple and satin tannin)
- Chocolate covered cherry
Describe the wines of Listrac-Medoc
- Dissimilar because of diversity of soil types
- Rustic and chewy tannins
Describe the wines of Moulis-en-Medoc
- Dense tannin that takes 10 years to soften
- Dumb in their youth
Describe the wines of Margaux
Most feminine, delicate, perfumed of all Medoc AOCs
Name 4 things that Margaux refers to
- a commune
- a town
- 1st growth within AOC Margot Hemingway changed her name to Margaux after tasting)
Name 2 earlier names of Saint-Julien
- Saint-Julien-de-Reignac (early 1900s)
What was the first commune of the Gironde to submit its wines for tasting panel approval?
Where is the highest elevation in the Medoc?
Listrac-Medoc (limestone plateau in the west)
Who was known as the "Prince of Vines"?
- The Marquis de Segur
- Owned Latour, Lafite, Mouton, and Calon-Segur(Saint-Estephe 3rd growth)
Name the first area in the Gironde planted to the vine
What ancient city became the port city of Bordeaux?
Burdigala (Roman times)
Describe the Graves region
36 miles long, 9-12 miles wide
Why is Graves wine good, even in rainy years?
Drainage is so good
Describe the soil of Graves
- Gravel, deepest in the north near Bordeaux
- Soils change in Cerons to gravel with clay, marl, limestone, sand
Describe the wines of Graves
- 75% red, 25% white
- Whites aged in oak
- Reds cellar-worthy
Name the Graves AOCs
- Graves Superieur: w
- Graves: r, w
- Pessac-Leognan: r, w
Name the sweetness levels of Graves white wine
- Dry: < 4 g/l (<0.4% RS)
- Moelleux: 4-45 g/l (0.4-4.5% RS)
- Liquoreux: > 45 g/l (4.5% RS)
Do Sauternes, Barsac, and Cerons AOCs lie within Graves?
Describe the soil of Sauternes, Barsac, and Cerons
- Sand, gravel, clay, marl, limestone atop limestone, gravel, clay, iron pan
- Best terroir is gravel atop clay
Describe the Barsac region
- Confluence of Ciron and Garonne
- N: hills
- S: low flat plateau (Haut-Barsac)
- vineyards bordered by low stone walls
- clay-limestone atop red Mindelian sand atop starfish limestone
Describe the Cerons region
- Similar to Barsac... hills and low flat plateau (Haut-Cerons)
- Cerons has more gravel so more red wine
What are carrassons?
- Stakes within vineyards
- Made from Acacia forests to the west
Name the 5 communes permitted to use the Sauternes AOC
If a dry wine (r or w) is made in Sauternes or Barsac what is it labeled?
Bordeaux or Bordeaux Superieur
If a dry or semi-sweet white is made in Cerons what is it labeled?
- Dry: Graves or Bordeaux AOCs
- Moelleux: Graves Superieur