Monday, 20 April 2009

Haut Médoc Wines

Haut Médoc Wines

Haut Médoc is part of the Médoc appellation and it's name means Upper Médoc as it sits at a higher altitude. The appellations of Pauillac, Listrac, Moulis, Margaux, Saint Julien, Saint Estèphe are encompassed within it.

The Haut Médoc lies on the Left Bank of the Gironde Estuary and its vineyards cover 10,500 acres.

Due to its size and composition Haut Médoc produces a wealth of different wine styles as the vineyards lie on varying soil types each with its own micro climate.

Terroir and Grapes

The soil is made up of well drained alluvial gravel terraces are best suited for the growing of Cabernet Sauvignon with clay and limestone lying underneath.

In ancient times the Haut Médoc was a vast region of salt marshes used for grazing but in these were drained in the 17th century to exclusively plant vineyards.

Cabernet Sauvignon is the dominant grape variety planted but Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Carménère, Petit Verdot and Malbec are also grown.

Wine Style

Wines from the Haut Médoc are bright, generous red wines with a delicate bouquet of dried cherries, vanilla, wood, liquorice and black fruits.

The colour tends to be a rich ruby or garnet red. They age well and as they develop they acquire wonderful aromas of leather, roasted coffee, prunes and truffles.

Famous Châteaux and Recommended Red Wines

Château d'Agassac
Château Sociando Mallet
Château La Lagune

Château Marquis de Perissac 2004 (£5.62) is made by a small, traditional co-operative of wine makers in Perissac itself, once an important stronghold that was destroyed in the 16th century and the countryside around the hamlet is famous for it's standing stones and dolmens. Marquis de Perissac is a typical example of a wine from the Haut Médoc, it's a generous, not too powerful red with rich aromas of blackberries and cherry with soft tannins and good structure.

Aged in oak barrels, it offers an elegant and pleasant woody fragrance and being a medium bodied wine it is perfect drinking with such meals as Duck, Lamb, Fillet Steak & Beef Stroganoff. It also captures and enhances the flavours of many Vegetarian delicacies, which contain protein based items such as Nuts, Lentils and Beans.

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