Le Grand Chai Montagne Saint-Emilion
Merlot, Cabernet Franc • Montagne Saint-Emilion AOC
Best loved of all the satellite appellations, Montagne produces claret closest in style to Saint-Émilion proper and always with impressive richness and depth. And with Jean-Marc Sauboua and Chai team in charge of this wine's creation, you have even more of both – a wine that offers velvety ripe red fruits with creamy vanilla length.
With Le Chai situated on the Dordogne river in Castillon, our winemakers are always close by when a parcel of top fruit comes up for grabs ... especially when its from close-neighbour Montagne Saint-Émilion. The region lies just northeast of the beautiful cobbled town of Saint-Émilion and is only separated from the grander appellation by a stream, the Barbanne.
In fact, it was long-time friend Olivier Cazenave who introduced us to this small Montagne estate back in 2009. Olivier is himself a négociant and property owner on the Right Bank, so has many contacts himself. He kindly told us of an estate that he believed had particularly fine terroir. We gladly took up the recommendation and were highly impressed by the grapes. Indeed, the quality is so high, every year we carefully ferment the wine and age a substantial portion of it in new oak barrels at Le Chai. This lends the velvety Merlot fruit an extra layer of creamy depth and subtle oak hints. For now, open and decant an hour before serving with lamb - this wine's ideal food 'mate'. It'll continue to improve with age.
Aromas of dense black fruit with gentle vanilla oak. Velvety and ripe with dark pruney richness and a luxurious oaky layer.
Region: Montagne Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux
Grapes: Merlot, Cabernet Franc
Style: Medium-bodied red
Colour: Deep crimson