2019 Chateau des Antonins AOC Bordeaux Blanc

$25

This latest vintage really let the Sauvignon Blanc express itself.  A few drops poured into the glass and it is an explosion of aromas to the nose; notes of grapefruit, exotic fruit on a hint of boxwood and mint to refresh. On the palate there are flavors of honeysuckle, green pepper, jalapeno, orange blossom, underripe white peach, cilantro, and white pepper.   A balanced, ample mouth with a nice length will make this wine the perfect ally of your festive moments.  

 

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Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc, a very recognizable white wine that is popularly dry, refreshingly zesty, and has strong, fruity and herbal characteristics. Ever hear of the term “pyrazines?” It’s a term noting the strong herbaceous flavors that are derived from compounds called Methoxypyrazines. These compounds are also found in bell peppers!

A flagship varietal to the Loire Valley in France (Sancerre) and New Zealand, the Sauvignon Blancs from New Zealand tend to be more aromatic and have tropical fruit notes than those from the Bordeaux or Loire Valley regions in France. Usually fermented in stainless steel vats, Sauvignon Blanc gives a clean, crisp flavor with occasional mineral notes, but no characteristics from oak, like you would normally see in a grape varietal like Chardonnay. However, look out for Fumé Blanc, this style of wine is an oaked-version of Sauvignon Blanc.

Bordeaux, France

The largest region within France, Bordeaux has made quite the name for itself with its prestigious producers and fine wines. Bordeaux, having a moderate maritime climate, sees much influence from the nearby gulf stream including warming effects, rainfall and humidity which is why you’ll find a number of their vineyards closer to the ocean with a high gravel soil content. You may hear the term “Bordeaux Blend” thrown around or used in other countries pertaining to their wines that are made from multiple “Bordeaux” grape varietals and blended together. When this term is used it means the winemaker has included these 5 main grape varietals that are traditional to the Bordeaux region: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Malbec. Customary white grape varieties from Bordeaux are Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon and Muscadelle. In the famous regions of Sauternes and Barsac you’ll find these classic white grapes used to make top quality sweet wine.

Bordeaux has many distinguished appellations within the large region often characterized by “left bank” or “right bank.” The Dordogne and Garonne rivers form the Gironde Estuary that divides the Bordeaux vineyards into these separate “banks.”  Falling on the left bank are the principal districts of Médoc/Haut-Médoc, Graves and Sauternes. Within each of these districts lies smaller appellations home to some of the most famous Château houses around the world. On the opposite side, Saint-Émilion and Pomerol make up the right bank where a vast majority of the Merlot grape is grown.

The name of the estate « Chateau des Antonins » comes from the St Antoine hospitallers whom established themselves in this former convent around the 13th century. The monastic order was founded to heal patients suffering from St Anthony’s fire – later called ergotic poisoning. The monks treated this illness thanks to healthier food – the famous saint Antoine’s pig – but more importantly thanks to the concoction of a secret drink with extraordinary therapeutic properties. The Saint Vinage is made with a wine base mixed with herbs.  The Antonins’s commandery still remains an halt to the pilgrims travelling to the shrine of Santiago de Compostella. Of this era remains a fine collection of buildings dating from the 13th to the 16th centuries including; the convent, chapel, the “toll” bridge, the water mill, all listed as “historical monuments”. In 1985, Geoffroy de Roquefeuil revived the the winemaking traditions of the hospitallers. He gradually restructured the old monks’ estate and joined the Abbeys Wines association. In 2016, Antoine, the aptly named, joins the family team and takes care of all the production.

 

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