Château d’Aiguilhe 2019
Chateau d'Aiguilhe is a castle located in the Côtes de Castillon wine appellation on the right bank of the Bordeaux region in France. The castle dates back to the 13th century and has been owned by a number of different families over the years. The castle is situated on a rocky outcrop and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. The vineyards surrounding the castle are planted with predominantly Merlot grapes, with smaller amounts of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Château d’Aiguilhe always had promising terroir, and this producer was making wine during the 1700s. Though the estate was primarily used for agriculture back in the day, the family that oversaw the operations at the estate, the Leberthon family, knew there was something special here. Eventually, Etienne Martineau purchased the land in 1920 and created the vineyards that are on the property today. At the time, the property was known as Château La Fleur d’Aiguilhe. He owned the estate for several generations, yet this jewel of Côtes de Castillon was relatively obscure. All that was to change in 1998, when the legendary Stephen von Neipperg set his sights on the property. The Von Neippergs are a prominent family within the Saint-Émilion appellation, famous for owning illustrious estates such as Château Canon La Gafféliere, Château Clos de l'Oratoire, and Château La Mondotte, to name a few. Once Stephan von Neipperg purchased Château La Fleur d’Aiguilhe, he renamed the estate Château d’Aiguilhe. The reason it is named, “l’Aiguilhe,” is because of the estate’s unique terroir. The property is bored on one side by a plateau and the other by a small valley. This overlooks l’Aiguilhe, which is a French term meaning, “needle.”
After purchasing Château d’Aiguilhe, much work needed to be done both in the vat room and the vineyards. The vineyards were completely replanted and the von Neippergs spared no expense in creating a brand-new, circular-shaped winery. The winemaking facilities were upgraded to the latest technology. As of 2014, Château d’Aiguilhe began to make a white Bordeaux wine, d’Aiguilhe Blanc. This wine is made from 100% Sauvignon Blanc. The terroir is a mixture of limestone and clay soils with an impressive elevation of 110 meters at its peak. This property sits on the choicest parcels within the entire Côtes de Castillon appellation. There is excellent drainage, and the vines have a southern-facing exposure, which gives them the perfect amount of sunlight. At the time of purchase by the Von Neippergs, there was a hefty portion of Cabernet Sauvignon. That was pulled in favor of more Merlot – the star of this region. This 140-hectare estate has 90 hectares planted with Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Château d’Aiguilhe practices sustainable viticulture, and all the vines are diligently tended to. Everything is harvested by hand, and the wine is vinified in a mixture of concrete and wooden vats. The wine is subsequently aged in French Oak for approximately 15-18 months to give it plenty of backbone and structure.
"A terrific effort from this large and immaculately maintained property on the clay-limestone slopes of the Côtes de Castillon, the 2019 d'Aiguilhe exhibits aromas of cherries and cassis mingled with notions of burning embers, licorice and warm spices. Medium to full-bodied, layered and concentrated, with lively acids, powdery tannins and a mineral finish, it's intelligently matured in tank and large-format oak as well as small barriques." - William Kelley, The Wine Advocate, Ratings: 92, Drink: 2021-2039
"The 2019 d'Aiguilhe sports a very deep garnet-purple color, springing from the glass with vivacious scents of fresh blueberries, kirsch and ripe blackberries plus wafts of underbrush, wilted roses, chalk dust, and chocolate-covered cherries with a hint of lavender. The medium-bodied palate has an electric line of freshness cutting through the perfumed black fruits, textured by finely grained, soft tannins, finishing with a skip in its step." - Lisa Perrotti-Brown., The Wine Advocate, Ratings: (90-92)
"I always love this wine. The 2019 Château D'Aiguilhe has a terrific sense of minerality and elegance yet still brings plenty of fruit. Coming from the cooler Castillon region east of Saint-Emilion, it offers a perfumed bouquet of framboise, white flowers, crushed rock, and spice. Elegant and medium-bodied, with nicely integrated acidity and a great finish, it's going to drink brilliantly for 10-15 years." - Jeb Dunnuck (6/30/2020), Ratings: 91-93, Drink: 2020-2035
|Appellation||Castillon - Côtes de Bordeaux|