In college, a Médoc was my epiphany red wine moment. In just one sniff, my growing fascination with wine shifted from California to France. Regrettably, those thrilling experiences via Bordeaux don't really come around anymore. The point-chasing, over-extracted, over-oaked, ripe-beyond-recognition style set in motion in the mid-80s has changed the region for the worse, and the pendulum has to swing back. Yet, terroir-driven producers do still exist. 

Situated between Pomerol and Saint Emilion on the second-highest point along the Gironde estuary, Chateau Le Puy is a Bordeaux estate rooted in sensibilities more commonly found in Burgundy. The wines' finesse, transparency of place, and approachability are worlds apart from the stylistic norm in this revered region.
These vines have been farmed free of chemicals since 1610, and today, full biodynamic practices are employed, with work done by horse. The estate's plantings include 85% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, and small percentages of Malbec and Carménère on an amalgamation of red clay, silex, and limestone soils.
In addition to organic and biodynamic farming, their fermentation and élevage methods are also considered uncommon. Infusion and semi-carbonic methods limit the extraction of tannins, providing soft texture and bright, open-knit fruit out of the gate. Aging in large foudre preserves all of that backbone of mineral tension, bringing a freshness missing from the surrounding chateaux.
The Wines
Duc des Nauves sits at the lowest elevation on the property on a sandy limestone parcel and is fermented and aged exclusively in cement. It's one of the best values available in Bordeaux.
Emilien is the main wine of the chateau. Its personality shows silken tannins and elegance that neighboring Pomerol is revered for. Aged in century-old foudres and neutral 228-liter Bordeaux barrels. 
Bartélemy comes from "Les Rocs," a parcel of old vines planted on deep limestone. Its structure, saturating texture, and persistence rival those under the region's famous classifications of 1855 and 1955. Aged in 228-liter barrels (Less than 10% new).

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