Chateau La Fleur Garderose
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Country of Origin: France
Location: Saint Emilion, Bordeaux
People: Pueyo Family, Owners & Winemakers
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Château La Fleur Garderose is made by the Pueyo family in Saint-Emilion. The Pueyo family has owned Château Belregard Figeac since 1853. The estate has remained in the family, and this continuous ownership is accompanied by the priceless and intimate knowledge of the best parcels of each vineyard gained through seasons of observation. This is the kind of understanding that no amount of time at university can replace. It shows through in the wine, a true example of the character of their particular corner of Saint-Emilion.
Essentially, Château La Fleur Garderose is a selection of the best vats from the Pueyo cellar. Both bottlings are the more serious companions to the Belregard Figeac Saint-Emilion and Tellus Vinea. The difference in quality from that of their counterparts is not generally in elevage, but in the quality of fruit. In the glass, both show a greater structure and concentration, and perhaps will need more time in the bottle to unleash their full potential.
Brothers Jacques and Jean-Paul Pueyo are the current generation in charge of all affairs at Belregard Figeac. Jacques’ son Christophe Pueyo joined the Château in 2010. As is often done with the new generation, Christophe began making changes at the domaine like converting their vineyards to organic viticulture and making some dramatic changes to the elevage. Since 2012, Christophe has begun to replace the small barrique in the cellar with neutral demi-muid and foudres, which he buys from the Austrian cooperage Stockinger. Christophe has also instilled a gentler and more natural approach than was the norm with his father and uncle. The results of these changes have been crystal-clear. Today the wines exhibit a purity of fruit and vibrant energy that was not present in the past.
Merlot dominates at Château La Fleur Garderose, comprising 68% of the vineyards. Cabernet Franc (25%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (7%) make up the rest. The vines are an average 40 years old (as of 2018). The majority of the holdings are situated on the plain of Figeac, certainly one of the most renowned of the various terroirs of Saint-Emilion, located on the border of Libourne and Pomerol. The harvest is done manually.
The vineyards are situated on the slopes near the picturesque village of Saint-Emilion but in the section that borders Libourne and Pomerol. Saint-Emilion is a large appellation, with noticeable variation in soil types; over 17 different combinations of soil and subsoils are classified here, which results in wines that can be very different from one another. At Belregard Figeac, the soil is a deep sand positioned on moderate slopes. Compared to the Médoc, the soils are richer. Vines are more vigorous and require wider spacing, with an average 5,000 to 6,000 vines per hectare as compared to 9,000 to 10,000 vines per hectare that is common in the Médoc.