St-Émilion is one of the most popular areas of Bordeaux due to the beauty of the region as well as the sumptuous style of the wines. The grapes from your tiny Clos Villemaurine plot of Grand Cru vines are exclusively blended by us.
VINES: Clos Villemaurine
WINE: St-Émilion Grand Cru Clos Villemaurine
GRAPE VARIETIES: Merlot & Cabernet Franc
VINEYARD: Château Cardinal Villemaurine
WINEMAKER: Paul Carrille
GUIDE BOTTLE PRICE:* £19.31 (based on collect)
RENTALS START FROM £59
Our exclusive blend varies each year, but is generally around 60% Merlot and 40% Cabernet Franc aged in a mix of new and used oak for up to 18 months.
About the vines & wine:
Your vines are based right on the edge of the beautiful wine town of St-Émilion itself. Enclosed by a wall (the French word for this is Clos), this is a tiny plot of vines of less than two hectares in size. Paul works the clay, sand and limestone soils using a horse-drawn plough as he prefers not to compact the soils too much – which a tractor would do. Also, it’s a more environmentally friendly approach. And finally, he can’t get a tractor into the Clos anyway!
St-Émilion is one of the most famous and desirable of all wines. It is based on Merlot blended with Cabernet Franc. The style tends to be quite rich and opulent, with supple, juicy tannins.
It shows delicate floral notes and has intense savoury plum and damson fruit with attractive spice and toasty oak. It benefits from a few years ageing and will last at least a decade or more.
Paul Carille took over from his father Jean-François a few years ago. When you speak to Paul (he speaks perfect English – his wife is an English teacher at a nearby school), you can see just how passionate he is about his terroir and making wine in this, one of the most famous and desirable appellations of anywhere in the wine world.
About the region:
St-Émilion sits on an escarpment high above the River Dordogne. It is responsible for one of the world’s most appealing wines. The special terroir – that combination of sun, soil and slope – are ideal for the Merlot grape in particular. Wine has been made here since Roman times. However, one could say that in the last ten to fifteen years, the region has risen to dizzy heights due in part to the so-called Garagiste movement. This was the name given to the small bunch of passionate, artisanal winemakers who were making tiny quantities of incredibly rich and opulent wine, literally from their garage or back yard. They sold these wines at eye-watering prices, mainly to collectors in the US and the Far East. There are now Garagiste wines made all over the world – miniscule quantities of very powerful and oaky wines sold for outrageous prices. But this beautiful region spawned the first innovators.
The town of St-Émilion is a world UNESCO heritage site. It is in a delightfully picturesque setting, with many lovely shops, wine merchants and restaurants set amongst steep cobbled streets and Romanesque ruins. The well-kept ramparts offer magical views of the vines and the lovely houses below. The ancient Monolithic church is hewn into a cliff and above it sits one of France’s best restaurants. Paul Carrille’s vineyard is only ten minutes from the centre of town. Villemaurine refers to the ‘town of the Moors’ who once occupied the region.
Our Bordeaux Uncorked event takes place each year early in July. We get under the surface of the largest and most prestigious wine region in the world. Our weekend is designed to give a unique insight into the people, the place and naturally, the wonderful wines of this influential region. We base ourselves at the beautiful, charming and turreted Château Pontet d’Eyrans near Blaye. We have a splendid tour and tasting followed by a delicious meal with the Baudet family in their Pre-Revolution salle à manger at Château Monconseil-Gazin in Blaye. We visit your vines at Château Cardinal Villemaurine in St-Émilion and enjoy time in the stunning town itself. We also cross over the mighty River Gironde by ferry for a tour of the myriad of amazing châteaux on the left bank – where some of the world’s most famous and expensive wines are made. After a superb tour and tasting at our Margaux producer Château Mongravey, we dine with the owners at a local restaurant with beautifully-crafted food accompanied by many different vintages of Margaux. It’s a weekend brimming with great sights, stylish gastronomy, wonderful wines and of course, the unforgettable characters that we meet.
* Wine prices may vary slightly due to exchange rate differences. If you choose to have your wine shipped to the UK, shipping costs and duty will be added.