Grape(s): Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc
Localization: Bordeaux, France
Description: The red wine is a blend of 50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. The grapes are destemmed and then manually sorted for quality before being crushed and put into the stainless steel fermenting tanks. Maceration lasts for 2-3 weeks with pumping over of the juice twice per day. It is aged in barrel for at least a year during which period it is racked several times and then fined and filtered before bottling.
The Domain: Château Magneau is an ancient property that has been run by the Ardurat family since before the reign of Henri IV. It is located in the historic commune of La Brède, a mile from the historic moated castle where Montesquieu was born. Today, Chateau Magneau is run by Henri Ardurats and his two sons Jean-Louis and Bruno along with Jean-Louis’ wife, Brigitte, who is responsible for the sales. Jean-Louis is in charge of the vineyards as well as the winemaking. He continually works on the expression of his wines by farming parcels of land individually and then vinifying each separately according to its intrinsic character. A modern winery was built in 1980 and a new barrel cellar in 1996. From one generation to the next, the Ardurats have passed on the philosophy of “quality before profit" and they have been recognized by an exhaustive list of awards. In 2002, they received the Trophée des Crus de Graves, an award which is given by colleagues and which recognizes only a few chateaux from the entire appellation. The Ardurats farm 41 hectares of land with deep gravelly soil in the heart of the Graves appellation. Farming is done without the use of chemical insecticides and harvesting is done both by hand and by machine. Before entering the winery all grape bunches are hand-sorted to ensure the highest quality of fruit. The Ardurats are a member of Terra Vitis, an organization that certifies the practice of sustainable agriculture as well as high standards for the wine’s vinification.