90% Sauvignon Blanc- 10% Semillon
Vineyard & Vinification Note
Château La Garde was one of the first properties to introduce integrated viticulture, an approach that produces premium quality grapes with total respect for the environment and for mankind. Studies carried out on the estate have analysed the correlation between grape ripening and the quality of the soil and subsoil, particularly in relation to its water retention capacity. This has resulted in a highly detailed mapping of the vineyard, identifying individual rows or micro-plots within each parcel which reach full ripeness at the same rate. As a result of trials previously undertaken on test plots, coupled with our in-depth knowledge of the vineyard, our teams can now tailor and fine-tune viticultural practices in each zone accordingly. Carefully considered soil management techniques – tailored ploughing methods and green fertilizer – and an environmentally conscious approach to protecting the vineyard (reducing inputs, sexual confusion to combat pests, machine weeding, manual canopy management and yield control) promote harmony in the vine. These painstaking, rigorous techniques play an important role in controlling yields and plant vigour and result in optimised grape ripeness.
Severe pruning for example promotes even budburst, while bud stripping, secondary shoot removal, desuckering and leaf stripping improve the circulation of air around the grapes and guarantee healthy fruit. The grapes are harvested selectively on a row-by-row basis, and with meticulous care, ensuring that only perfectly ripe grapes of uniform ripeness enter the tanks.
Vintage 2017 : Winter was extremely mild and favoured early budburst and very rapid growth in the vine, followed by good and even bunch set. Frost at the end of April spared the estate’s white grape varieties, which continued to develop well approximately 3 weeks ahead of schedule. Flowering was quick and even in the dry, sunny May weather. Summer, particularly August, will be remembered for hot days (but not too hot) and cool, damp nights, with the contrast promoting freshness and balance in the bunches during very early ripening. Determining optimum harvesting dates for the Sauvignon blanc (dominant at La Garde) and Semillon is crucial in this early vintage. We harvested only in the morning, from August 29 to September 6. The wines are fresh and aromatic with a citrus fruit note.
HARVEST: manual, in crates Sauvignon Blanc: August 29th to September 6th Semillon : September 4th to 6th
AGEING: 10 months, on the lees, in the same oak barrels, 12% of which are new. « Batonnage » takes place by rotating the barrels using the Oxo Line system. The frequency varies according to the batches. The ageing allows a greater expression of the varietal aromas , with a well-integrated and elegant oaky character.
ESTATE BOTTLED: July 2018
The 2017 vintage once again confirms the originality and exceptional character of Chateau La Garde’s white-grape vineyard parcels. Here the pure expression of Sauvignon blanc on limestone reaches dizzy heights, and offers stunning minerality and purity on the nose, enhanced by aromas of citrus fruits and grapefruit in just the right measure. The mineral dimension is echoed on the palate, accompanied by poise and length carrying all the finesse, freshness and body that a touch of Semillon will harmonise to perfection. A very accomplished La Garde white for its distinction, freshness and purity. Frédéric Bonnaffous, Dourthe Estates Director
This is very linear and really energetic with a driven acidity and tight and compact fruit. Full-bodied yet remains so agile and bright. The lemon-zest and salty character is impressive. Only 10% new wood here. 93-94 Points, April 2018
Has a pessac signature not achieved by all in 2017. Pronounced citrus and rich stone fruits, clever oak and a very long finish. Primeurs 2017 Jane Anson.-92Points, July 2018
Delicious, with a mix of salted butter and brioche notes that should expand with cellar time, though for now the core of lemon pith, yellow apple and white peach flavors is tightly coiled and mouthwatering in feel. A long sel gris hint emerges on the finish too. Drink now through 2023. 1,275 cases made. 92 Points, James Molesworth, March 2019
Decanter World Wine Awards
Silver Medal – 91 Points – May 2019
This wine is a very good match with shellfish, grilled fish or in a sauce, hard cheese.