Chengdu – March 2018
We moved in China to the Spring fair – 98th which was held in the Shangrila hotel, in the city of Chengdu from 18 till 23 March 2018.
We were present at the French Wine Discoveries monday 15th (in Dublin) and wednesday 17th January 2018 (in London).
On a private estate of 92 acres, the Benito vineyard, situated above Cadillac, overhangs the valley of the Garonne offering the visitor magnificent views.
The estate also benefits from some remarkable natural factors : generous sunshine thanks to the magnificent South-East facing slopes on limestone hillsides giving the vineyard a perfect situation and basis for the finest quality grapes. Closed hedges and forest give an excellent balance.
It is on these lands convenient to the quality grapes that developed this passion.
The grape varietals are distributed as follow:
The density of planting is 5,000 feet by hectare. Pruning is carried out using the simple guyot system.
The Merlot grape gives to the wine its body as well as a beautiful aromatic power with notes of red berries (strawberries, cherries, raspberries) but also nuances of plum and spices.
The Cabernet Sauvignon grape brings steady colour, notes of black fruits (blackcurrant, blackberry) and especially the structure of the wine with its silky tannins. It also brings to the wine a longevity in the ageing process which characterises the great wines of Bordeaux.
The Cabernet Franc grape is known for its aromatic sharpness and its spicy notes (pepper, raspberry, violet). It brings to the wine a more structured, less coloured and tannic quality than that obtained with Cabernet Sauvignon, and also permits faster ageing.
Sauvignon Blanc gives a lively, well-balanced and fine dry white wine. It characterises the more aromatic and herbaceous white wines, with a vegetal character and notes of blackberry, boxwood and citrus.
Sémillon, thanks to its fine skin allows the noble rot to develop, in order to give high-quality syrupy white wines. It is characterised by aromas of hazelnut, acacia and honey and brings some roundness, body and richness to the wine.
Sauvignon Gris produces delicate, subtle and particularly interesting aromatic wines for the assemblies.
Finally Muscadelle contributes an intensely floral character with floral tones of honeysuckle, acacia, muscat and orange.
Cadillac Côtes de Bordeaux vineyard is situated on a narrow band 40 miles long and 3 miles wide along the right bank of the Garonne river.
Thanks to the Gallo-Roman colonisation and to the presence of Benedictine monks in the middle ages, it is rich in historical heritage, with ancient manor houses, fortified castles, and romanic and baroque churches.
You can come across beautiful buildings called “folies” built by the bourgeois inhabitants of Bordeaux in the XVIIIth century which constitute just one of the delightful discoveries of one of the most charming parts of the ‘Bordelais’.
In fact this area of vineyards in Bordeaux was well-known to the Romans. The conquest of Gaul by Julius Caesar brought the first vines to the Cadillac region.
CHANTAL BENITO LARNAUDIE
LARBI EL BOUZIDI