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2008 Lussac Saint Émilion

Château de Bellevue

2008 Lussac Saint Émilion Château de Bellevue - Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant

No, we did not forget a digit when typing up the price of this wine, a nine year-old Bordeaux straight from the cellar of an organic vigneron in the heart of the Right Bank. The magic of so–called “satellite appellations,” as we refer to Lussac in relation to neighboring Saint-Émilion, is that there is more variation in terroir within each AOC than between the two. A great Lussac can therefore outperform an average Saint-Émilion, but its price will never come close.

Bellevue sits on a plateau of pure chalk, which gives the wine a flavor as site specific as can be. It manifests itself in its appetizing acidity, stony tannins, and lively fresh fruit that make this Lussac delicious now and for many years to come.

Anthony Lynch

Vintage: 2008
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: 95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc
Appellation: Lussac Saint Émilion
Country: France
Region: Bordeaux
Producer: Château de Bellevue
Winemaker: André Chatenoud
Vineyard: 40 years, 9.5 ha
Soil: Clay, Limestone
Farming: Organic (certified)
Alcohol: 13%

More from this Producer or Region

About Bordeaux

Often considered the wine capital of the world, Bordeaux and its wines have captured the minds, hearts, and wallets of wine drinkers for centuries. For many, the wines provide an inalienable benchmark against which all other wines are measured.

Bordeaux is divided into three winegrowing regions with the city that gives the region its name in the near geographical center. The “right bank,” or the area located east of the Dordogne River, produces wines that are predominantly Merlot with small amounts of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. The “left bank” is located to the west of the Garonne River and produces wines dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, with Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot.

The third region, Entre-Deux-Mers, lies between both rivers and produces white wines from Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon, and Muscadelle. Though technically in the left bank, it is worth noting the appellation of Sauternes, which produces arguably the world’s most famous sweet wines from Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon, and Muscadelle as well.

Though many top Bordeaux wines are sold en primeur (in advance of their bottling) and often through a middleman known as a negoçiant, Kermit has always preferred to purchase directly from the winemaker. For more than three decades he has sought out small producers, who make classic Bordeaux wines and are willing to play outside the negoçiant system. This ethic has led to longstanding relationships, excellent prices, and perhaps most important—wines of great value and longevity.

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When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:

1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.

Inspiring Thirst, page 174


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