Château de Bellevue is not your typical Bordeaux estate: it is small, family-run, and entirely organic—all rare in this vast and prestigious wine region. Covering just twelve hectares, Bellevue sits on a limestone plateau that gives its wines a particular goût de terroir that sets it apart from others in the region. This blend of Merlot with a drop of Cabernet Franc is consistently firm, fresh, and chalky from year to year, a stark contrast with the opulent, velvety reds produced in Saint-Émilion and even other parts of Lussac. This mineral backbone endows it with great aging potential, and yet the wine delights in its young years thanks to the pure, bright fruit and mouth-watering finale. Proprietor and vigneron André Chatenoud has been known to serve his Lussac with duck breast grilled over vine cuttings, but any number of other simple, yet delicious pairings will work. In the summertime, don’t hesitate to give this red a slight chill if necessary.
The good-natured proprietor of the Château de Bellevue, André Chatenoud, seems more at home in his cellars than anywhere else. Though he and his family have owned the property since 1971, the history of the château dates back to at least the 18th Century. One needs only to explore the incredible limestone caves and see the rich range of old graffiti engravings to be impressed: from harvest workers of the 1700s to American G.I.’s of the 1940s. The terroir of Château de Bellevue is characterized by exceptional quality – only surprising because the great, low prices here at Bellevue stand to shift the perceptions of what good Bordeaux should cost.
Let the brett nerds retire into protective bubbles, and whenever they thirst for wine it can be passed in to them through a sterile filter. Those of us on the outside can continue to enjoy complex, natural, living wines.
Inspiring Thirst, page 236