6 June 2013

Château Haut Peyrous – A Darroze Estate in Graves

DiscoverVin is proud to be importing wine from Château Haut Peyrous in the Graves appellation of Bordeaux.  While not a classified producer, Château Haut Peyrous exemplifies Bordeaux’s new generation. Producers adopting new techniques, including organic practices and working with their terroir to produce quality value for money wines.  Marc Darroze, of the famous Darroze family of Gascony owns Château Haut Peyrous and has been driving the changes to make these unique wines.

For three generations the Darroze family have lived in the area and have been known for their Armagnac.  Marc’s sister Helene Darroze boasts two Michelin rosettes at her wonderful restaurant in the Connaught Hotel, London, along with award winning restaurants in Paris and Moscow.

Marc has worked with his father producing Armagnac and recently diversified into his own wine estate, Château Haut Peyrous. Organic practices in the vineyard are producing wines with lots of personality, by making the most of the quality of the terroir on his estate.  Since June 2008, all work on the estate has been carried out in accordance with organic production criteria.  Wines from the 2012 vintage will be certified as organic.  The soil is worked mechanically, and the grass grows between rows to enable humus to develop and encourage intense microbial activity in the soils. Similar projects are cropping up across Bordeaux and the south-west of France with a new generation of wine-makers introducing modern production methods to properties on proven terroir.

When we first tasted the wines of Haut Peyrous, the quality and value blew us away.  The white wine being simply delicious and a great example of just what can be achieved in the white wines of Bordeaux.

The red wine was smooth and restrained, but opening a bottle recently from the 2008 vintage, has revealed a new level of flavour and complexity with the passage of time.
Mary Harrington from DiscoverVin says, “Marc Darroze is producing great wines. We are delighted that everyday wine lovers in Australia now have the opportunity to enjoy authentic French flavour and impressive quality, together with value for money.”

The Darroze wines in the DiscoverVin portfolio are:
RRP $46.20 (online)
The square shaped net (carrelet) that the fisherman has just hauled out of the Garonne is teeming with shad, lamprey and eels …tasty fish, which need to be cooked slowly and gently.  Fish like this need complex and generous wines to pair with! 
Grapes:  Semillon (75%), Sauvignon Blanc (25%).
Alcohol: 13.0% VOL
Our Tasting notes:  Lively nose with spice and mineral notes and vanilla from the oak.  Lovely soft and round mouth feel.  Richness and complexity on the back palate and a lovely soft acid backbone.

RRP $38.50 (online)
Palombieres (wild pigeons) return to the region each autumn in massive flocks which at times cover the skies, then roost in pine forests adjacent to the vineyard.
Grapes: Merlot (65%), Cabernet Sauvignon (20%), Cabernet Franc (15%) and small amount Petit Verdot and Malbec.
Alcohol:  13.5 % VOL
Wine making:  The long maceration period without massive extraction brought finesse to the wine, while maturing in oak barrels for one year helped to refine the tannins and to make the wine more complex.  In 2009 new oak was used to emphasise the lovely fruit.
Our Tasting notes:  Immediate complexity in nose with red fruits, chocolate and violets.  Great mouth feel, round, complex and gorgeous.  Lovely weight and primary fruit with restrained and integrated tannins. Lovely minerals and spice of good Graves. 

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