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Wine of the Week- French Bordeaux from ALDI “La Chartreuse” De Prieuré Marquet 2015

Written by Aksel Ritenis

Wine of the Week– French Bordeaux from ALDI

“La Chartreuse” De Prieuré Marquet 2015

With the recent passing of Le 14 juillet i.e. Bastille Day Celebrations ,.. and the running of the French Film Festival, and the new Covid-9 inspired  requirement to indulge only  in Virtual Travel experiences– ,..I was recently forced to focus on enjoying some French experiences like “Culture,.,gastronomy and wine”  right here in Sydney!
Somewhat fortuitously, I  had the opportunity to see La belle Epoque  (a great movie  full of reminiscences about the 70’s,.. when life was so much simpler) at the French Film festival, and I believe that Palace Cinemas is continuing to show some French Movie Highlights from the Alliance Francaise run film festival over the coming weeks!
Whilst in this melancholy French mood,.. and in an effort to forget about the “Covid Lockdown”,..I came upon a really exciting wine that has just been ranged by ALDI.
As I had been in the process of  writing up and sharing some Bordeaux Primeur content from one of the most prestigious First Growth wineries in Bordeaux  (Chateau Mouton Rothschild) on Connoisseur Magazine,.. and missing  the opportunity to attend the En Primeur Tastings held in Bordeaux every year ,.. instead I had to read copious pages of Tasting notes from numerous Wine Authorities including James Suckling who now  appears to have something of a local following.In this context,..  it was interesting  to discover a respectable Bordeaux wine for a modest price  right here and now in Sydney!
As I am constantly scanning the shelves of the majorBricks & Mortar Wine Retailers”  looking out for exciting new wines,…when I  came upon this particular wine ,..and knowing the “modus operandi”s of the Wine Buyers at ALDI,.. I figured I might be in for a treat!
My hunch that this wine might outperform its price-point, much like the Premier Crus MONSIGNY French Champagne that we discovered a couple of years ago proved correct.Hey Voila!

 Although not wildly complex,like a Classified Growth Bordeaux,.. this wine proved to be enjoyeable and smooth and is a damn good quality wine, considering its modest pricepoint $14.99. (Please note that it costs the same in Pounds in the UK ,..so it really does represent extraordinary good value!)

Terroir and Variety:

A Right Bank 100% Merlot from a recently revamped estate just north of St-Émilion with a very swanky hotel and a pristine cellar. The estate’s vineyard is located on a “deep silty-clay  rump” which gives the wine its power and its substance. Whilst the wine is produced in the less prestigious Canon Fronsac (located North East of Bordeaux, near Libourne),.,.. I reckon the terroir is pretty similar to that in the more prestigious appellation of St Emilion,..adjacent,.. which is renowned worldwide  for its “plummy and velvety smooth  Merlot dominated blend of wine”  as is the climate.

The publicity proclaims that “This terroir confers on the wines a freshness and a singular charm”. The Prieuré Marquet wines are the result of  work conducted with passion, seriousness and pleasure. Bernard Canonne, the estate owner, entrusted the responsibility of the destiny of this exceptional wine heritage to Luc Barusseau, an accomplished oenologist .The expression of the terroir is an element that takes on its full meaning in the wines of Château Prieuré Marquet , from the work of the vine to the cellars.

Here, attention to detail and a sense of precision inspire everyone at every step, both in the renovation of the château and in the monitoring of the vineyard and the patient production of the wines Chartreuse de Prieuré Marquet 2015 .

The wine is 100% Merlot and the vines are grown on a Deep silty-clay Terroir. The age of the vines is 15 to 25 years old

Appearance:

A deep ruby wine with dense dark colour and  violet fringes. In the glass and the wine has a density and viscosity that one tends to associate with quality wines.

Bouquet:

 A dusty black plum/cherry  and hints of oak and vanilla on the nose.It offers fresh and intense aromas of slight spice with dominant dark fruit and is reminiscent of  Forest Berries,….most notably ripe Blackberries,…,  with hints of leather,some perceptible chocolate and maybe a hint of vanilla.

On the Palate :

Medium bodied, Mid weight and reasonable complex and  smooth on the palate Although not wildly complex, this is a tasty, smooth, good quality wine.

 

Generally Merlot wines tend to be quite plummy in character,…and whilst this may well have a black plum character on the nose and the palate,(or ripe black cherry)..I instinctively concluded that the dominant bouquet was   reminiscent of ripe Blackberries.

Now I have frequently been amused by witnessing wine aficionados each finding  different flavour characteristics and Descriptors for the same wine!

Personally I think,.if you haven’t actually spent time in a forest or grown Berries and then stewed or conserved them,..into  a jam or conserve  ,..its difficult to distinguish fruit characteristics in an actual wine….but In this case ,..“I think its tout simple!”

If you have a jar of French Conserve from Bon Maman with the Forest Berries (Blackberries ,Raspberries,Strawberries and possibly ripe  Blackcurrants all stewed together in a Jammy Compote,..you would get an approximate Bouquet and flavour profile,…so far as the fruit component is concerned.
Of course different people find different aromas,..but I reckon the dominant one in this mix is the ripe Blackberry perhaps merged with or overlaying ripe  Black Plum,…Of course as with all quality wines there is a degree of complexity so there is also hint of Chocolate,Vanilla  and Tobacco,…not really surprising for a wine that spent 18 months  in French Oak Barrels.
So the wine is dry but fleshy on the palate with a decent amount of acidity, average finish.with tight and slightly firm tannins, length and freshness. the palate with a decent amount of acidity, average finish.with tight and slightly firm tannins, length and freshness.
The structure is enhanced by  a balancing attack of acidity,..(Acidity imparts a freshness and vigour to wine that makes it drinkable) and an immensely satisfying “tannic structure underrpinning the fruit core running through the wine on the middle and back palates.”
Good stuff!
 

Winemaking

From 3 to 4 weeks from vatting to runoff. The grapes are picked mechanically and sorted by hand, near fermentation maceration for 24 to 48 hours at 16-18 ° C, fermentation for 5 to 7 days in tanks at 26 ° C.

In barrels, casks and stainless steel tanks for 10 to 12 months.
The expression of the terroir is an element that takes on its full meaning in the wines of Château Prieuré Marquet , from the work of the vine to the cellars.The estate’s vineyard is located on a deep clay rump which gives the wine its power and its substance. .Here, attention to detail and a sense of precision inspire everyone at every step, both in the renovation of the château and in the monitoring of the vineyard and the patient production of the wines Chartreuse de Prieuré Marquet 2015 A Right Bank 100% Merlot from a recently revamped estate just north of St-Émilion with a very swanky hotel and a pristine cellar.  .

Medals and Awards: 

This wine has been awarded a Silver Medal at Concours Mondial de Bruxelle

TOURISM-La Chartreuse De Prieuré Marquet

The wine described comes from a  recently revamped estate just north of St-Émilion with a very swanky hotel and a pristine cellar!

The Chateau Prieuré Marquet is located north of Bordeaux, near Libourne and Saint-Emilion, in the center of the Bordeaux countryside. Beautiful in all seasons, the area boasts rolling hills, vineyards, charming villages and elegant châteaux.

Located on a hill, the castle dominates its surroundings.From the large terrace, the view encompasses beautiful vineyards and forest landscape. A long pathway leads to the authentic “chartreuse” made from traditional Bordeaux limestone, characterized by its four main buildings arranged around a large open courtyard.

Since its acquisition in 2014, the castle has undergone a complete renovation including a respectfully modernized wine storehouse, in keeping with the traditional spirit of the settings. In a classic and contemporary harmonious blending, noble materials deal with bold gestures of great designers.

A high-end guest house, the Château Prieuré Marquet is now a luxurious haven which offers both exclusive and unprecedented services. Preserved and enhanced, the castle’s soul is embodied in a warm setting where each guest can enjoy a real “French lifestyle ».

Forming several hectares, the vineyard extends from the foot of the castle. Tours and tastings are offered so you can enjoy all the advantages of an estate designed for vacation and viticulture.

CONTACT

  • Château Prieuré Marquet,
  • Château d’hôtes de prestige
  • 33910 Saint-Martin-du-Bois, France
  • (GPS: 45.0365, -0.2513)

About the author

Aksel Ritenis

Publisher Sydney Times