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Built on a Roman-era ecclesiastical dwelling, Château Prieuré-Lichine provides an historic stop-off at Cantenac in the heart of the Margaux appellation along the Médoc’s château route. Its wine-growing history is one of the oldest in the region. From the very beginning, the Prieuré’s wine was popular with parishioners such as those of Saint-Didier de Cantenac. Successive owners of the Château contributed, over the years, to its growing quality. Promoted to the rank of Grand Cru Classé in 1855, Château Prieuré-Lichine offers its visitors the elegance and finesse mirrored in its wines and the characteristic traits of Margaux, together with the peacefulness of its grounds and the exquisite intimacy of its tasteful country home.
Just as the history of the estate has been made up of multiple eras and styles, so too the vineyard of Château Prieuré-Lichine is composed of a constellation of different plots characteristic of the terroirs of Margaux, forming a patchwork of soil types that cover 5 of the appellation’s communes. Brought about by unique geological eras, these soils are essentially composed of gravel (conglomerates of pebbles, gravel, sands and clay sediments), deposited by the river during the breaking-up of glaciers during the Quaternary era. The terraces of Günz Garonne gravel, which are incredibly well-preserved and offer superb draining capacity, are the defining feature of the Margaux terroir.
With its audacious, ingenious design, the new Prieuré-Lichine vat room offers the visitor an almost science-fiction-type atmosphere. Architecturally graceful and functional at the same time, the emblematic mark of the new Ballande family era, the style of the vat room acts as a bridge between the rotunda of modern-day architecture and the main historic 18th century structure. Designed by Sylvain Lagarde of the Archi Concept agency, this new cellar features 34 tulip and square-shaped concrete vats of different capacities enabling enhanced plot selection and more precision in the expression of the whole range of Margaux terroirs. The old vat room, which remains remarkably well-conserved, showcases the modernism of the Alexis Lichine era.
The wines of Château Prieuré-Lichine, a jewel of the appellation, express the elegance, finesse and pedigree of great Margaux wines. The estate boasts a long tradition of warm hospitality, embodied by the flamboyant and affable “Pope of Wine”, Alexis Lichine, who dedicated his skills and gave his name to the property. The cellars and château are open all year round to visitors from all over the world to come and discover that special spirit found at the estate, share a love of wine, an appreciation of beauty and Margaux’s own brand of “art de vivre”.
The First Wine of Château Prieuré-Lichine expresses all the qualities of a great Margaux wine. The estate also produces a Second Wine that displays attractive fruit with a succulent structure called Confidences de Prieuré-Lichine. Le Clocher du Prieuré, in the Haut-Médoc appellation is 100% Merlot and offers crisp fruit flavour and notes of fresh red berry fruits. The Blanc du Château Prieuré-Lichine is a limited release production expressing seductive notes of citrus and tropical fruit.
The year 2017 will long remain in our collective memory in Bordeaux, because of the devastating spring frosts that occurred over the last ten days of April. In Margaux, the frosts hit hardest on the nights of 27 and 28 April 2017 causing damage that hadn’t been witnessed since 1991.
Harvesting dates were early, and the crop size was what had been expected in the plots spared by the frosts. The reactivity enabled the winery to be precise in the harvesting dates with full ripeness achieved in all sectors that were preserved. The nice surprise was the Cabernet Sauvignon, which displayed a silky, tannic mouth-feel together with precise aromatics of small red berry fruits.
It is in these difficult years that the Great Margaux Terroirs shine through and demonstrate their ability to maintain the quality potential of a vintage in spite of the vagaries of the weather.
252 SGD -7%