It’s extremely rare for heart and mind to rule together, and Château de Ricaud, near Cadillac in southern Bordeaux, is the exception.
When Alain Thiénot bought the property in 1980, he was utterly convinced that quite apart from the splendour of the site, Château de Ricaud was a rough diamond set in a unique natural setting in the Côtes de Bordeaux appellation. Time and essentially work carried out in the vineyards by skilled craftsmen in recent years, resulted in 2010 in the creation of a true jewel of a wine – the Grand Vin de Château de Ricaud – a fine wine prized for its elegant character and pedigree, its concentration and extremely fine tannins
64% Cabernet Sauvignon – 30% Merlot – 6% Petit Verdot
Vineyard & Vinification Note
Surface in production for this wine : 7 Ha Soils : deep gravel on a clayey subsoil
Average age of the Vineyard : 20 years old.
Vine density : 7 000 plant/Ha Pruning : Guyot mixte
Average load : 8 to10 clusters by plant.
Vine management : plot by plot Integrated viticulture. Higher trellising to increase the canopy. Soils work adapted to the characteristics of each plot.
Multiple tasks in the vineyard: de-budding, removing the secondary shoots, removing the secondary shoots, 2 leaf-thinnings depending on the plot; removing uneven bunches after midveraison if necessary.
Harvest: By grape variety and type of soils, when the grapes have reached a perfect ripeness. New-generation harvesting machine, with integrated destemmer-separator and camera: greater control of the general quality. Sheltered harvest reception.
Vinification in separate batches, by varietal and by vineyard parcel. Fermentation temperature closely monitored to adapt the wine to specific vintage conditions. Ageing 12 months in new oak barrels, on fine lees
Vintage 2015: The first half of the year was blessed with excellent conditions, with the first signs of flowering emerging 29 May, slightly earlier than average. Hot and dry weather lasting just over seven weeks from mid-June to the end of July, blocked growth in the youngest vines. We meticulously adapted canopy management techniques to minimise the effects of water stress, and the vineyard coped well as a result. A spate of moderate rainfall in the middle of summer proved sufficient for veraison to get underway across the entire vineyard. The grapes swelled and favourable weather at the beginning of autumn facilitated excellent ripening. Harvesting lasted two weeks, and with no rainfall, we were able to leisurely pick each parcel at optimum ripeness. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are wonderful.
Deep, intense colour. Cultivated on gravel over clay, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates the blend, offering an intense bouquet with precious wood aromas of cedar, together with cigar box and delicate spices (white pepper). On the palate, the concentrated, velvety texture envelops the tongue, revealing generosity and intensity, together with great balance. The tannic structure and impressive length point reveal great ageing potential. Frédéric Bonnaflous, Dourthe Estates Director, November 2017
Wine Advocate Tasting Note
The 2015 de Ricaud, which has 52% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Merlot and Petit Verdot, has a focused, detailed bouquet with crisp blackberry and briary scents, a touch of cedar in the background. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, good depth and freshness with a sappy, harmonious finish that has really blossomed in barrel. This Cadillac Côtes de Bordeaux comes recommended. Excellent. 91 Points, Neal Martin, March 2018
James Suckling Tasting Note
This is really focused and polished for this chateau with currants and cherries and some flowers. Medium to full body, fine tannins and a bright finish. Pretty wine. Drink now. 91 Points, February 2018
Wine Enthusiast Tasting Note
This is a beautiful, ripe, soft, perfumed wine. Its intense berry fruit is well to the fore, backed by firm tannins. Packed with fruit and smokiness from wood aging, it has strong aging potential. 91 Points,December 2017
Drink with grilled red meat or meat and gravy (meatballs in sauce, rabbit stew…), roasted poultry (quails and plum, guinea fowl with chestnuts, chicken and mushrooms-filled vol-au-vent) and cheeses such as camembert, brie de meaux and goat cheese.