Chateau Haut-Marbuzet - 2013.
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
Saint Estèphe AOC, Bordeaux, France
Toasty and smoky. Lovely weight of berried fruit with elegant spicy tones. Tannins are round and ripe and give this red wine a perfect frame.
- Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
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Reading the works of a number of commentators on Bordeaux and it soon becomes clear that some hold Haut-Marbuzet, as shaped by Hervé Duboscq, in the highest regard. Clive Coates once ranked it third in the commune behind only Montrose and Cos d'Estournel.
The origins of Haut-Marbuzet lie in the 18th Century, when much of the land around the hamlet of Marbuzet, in the commune of St Estèphe, was in the ownership of two families. The first is a familiar name, it being none other than the nobleman Alexandre de Ségur, who held sway here until his death in 1776, when his lands were divided and sold.
This estate was acquired by Marc-Antoine Domenger, who was régisseur at Latour, and these vineyards subsequently gave rise to Chateau Le Crock, now owned by the Cuvelier family of Léoville-Poyferré, and Chateau de Marbuzet. The other name, not so familiar, is Sylvester Fatin, who bequeathed his lands to his daughters in 1770.
In 1825, however, these vineyards came to the MacCarthys, a family of Irish immigrants and wine merchants. It was the MacCarthy estate that would give rise to Haut-Marbuzet.
"Henri Duboscq and his son Louis of chateau Haut-Marbuzet believe in the power of terroir above anything they do. Certainly, this is a hugely overlooked sleeping superstar, situated on brilliant land, about two minutes drive behind Cos D'Estournel. Previously a Cru Bourgeois Exceptionnel, it is of Classed Growth quality and increasingly priced as such, but this 2009 is still reasonable for such a fine wine: cedar, deep dark bruised fruit, fine tannins and a succulent, mildly smoky and dark chocolate tinged finish. A delight, with several years of evolution to come."
Nestled between Châteaux Cos d'Estournel and Montrose, Château Haut-Marbuzets vineyard covers 61 hectares and is planted with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc. Overlooking the Gironde estuary, most of the vineyards lie on the gravel of Marbuzet and the plateau of Long Treytin. Often described as exotic or opulent, Haut-Marbuzet wines develop a lushness that is unusual in the somewhat severe style of Saint-Estèphe. A second wine is produced from the vines under 12 years old, under the label Château MacCarthy, which bears the name of the Irish Jacobite family who created the vineyard.