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Chateau Charmail 2011CBE Haut Medoc

Deep ruby with a tight rim. Dense. The nose is ripe and mature; fruit is dried prunes and berries; oak tones are more tobacco, liquorice, and spice than creamy vanilla. The medium-weighted palate reflects the nose: a slightly dried fruit character with reconciled tannins and acidity. On the second sip, it leaves integrated red and black currant fruit, spices and wood elements. People will say that this wine is extracted, which is, in our view, not exactly true. Composition is 42% Cabernet Savignon, 50% Merlot and 8% Petit Verdot. ABV 12% only.

Over the dinner, even more, generous Merlot fruit is uncovered. These softer and riper fruits add a certain richness to the Haut Medoc tripod of soil-tannin-acidity type of austerity. And these fruit characters continue to stay strong.

This wine made with maximum non-intervention gives a lighter and elegant style. The wine starts with a 15-day cold soak at 5 degrees Celsius before fermentation, retaining as much fruit as possible. Then a 21-day cuvasion in stainless steel keeps the quality of the fruit. They are then ageing in 12 months in an average of 30% new French oak barrels. Not filtered and unfined, this wine has racks only two times a year. Terroir is 34 hectares on a single plot on sloping terrain with a southerly aspect looking out to the Gironde estuary, and so an excellent ripeness. Soils are clay gravel, sandy gravel and colluvium, and so is the structure. The result is a claret that can be drunk young and will not conflict with their ability to age due to the tannins' richness. It has consistent scores: DD90, WE89, WS88.

Critical Acclaim

🏅Wine Enthusiast 89 Pts

The ripe berry fruits round out the initial sense of structure. It's a dense wine, full of firm tannins but with fine acidity, sweet fruitiness and a sense of brooding power. It will be a rich wine.

🏅Wine Spectator 88 points

Currant paste and plum skin notes form the core, with well-embedded charcoal and tar details on the finish lending a grippy edge.


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