Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Wine of the Week - Chateau Lamothe Bordeaux Rouge “Madame Etienne”

The stately Château Lamothe in the commune of Haux southwest of Bordeaux’s city center has actively produced estate-bottled wine since the 16th century. It is currently run by the Damien and Maria of the Néel-Chombart family, who have owned the property since 1956. Their more recent innovation is the ‘Madame Etienne’ line. Madame Etienne was the owner of the winery in the 1920s and was was responsible for significant restoration and expansion of the estate during her tenure, really putting the Château Lamothe name on the Bordeaux map. These wines represent a more modern, even feminine style of Bordeaux. The red undergoes skin contact for three days at 5° Celsius, encouraging fruit extraction and very soft tannins. The result is a juicy wine that shows the plush, red fruited nature of its Merlot/Cabernet Sauvignon blend.

Château Lamothe practices sustainable viticulture and has over time incorporated more and more organic techniques into their vineyard management and winemaking. They try to avoid spraying in
the vineyards and encourgage biodiversity in all their landholdings. To this end, they have joined Terra Vitis, an organization that: “is firmly planted on all three pillars of sustainable development; social, environmental and economic. Using the corporate social responsibility (CSR) method, Terra Vitis has launched an analysis of the impact of a wine estate on all the people involved (employees, suppliers and consumers). The aim is to make Terra Vitis estates models in social responsibility.” (From their website.) The 80 hectares of land belonging to Château Lamothe is home to a variety of wildlife, including bees, and Damien and Maria are very cognizant of maintaining meadow and forest habitats that encourage wildlife habitation.

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